March 8th marks International Women’s Day (IWD), the annual civil awareness day, observed worldwide by companies, organisations and governments such as the UN. The earliest recorded observance of IWD was in New York, 1909, organised by the Socialist Party of America.
IWD 2016 will be celebrated globally through a number of different themes, with the UN pressing, ‘Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality’, Google sharing their #OneDayIWill IWD Doodle, and the IWD foundation pushing #PledgeForParity, with leaders from across the world – including influential figures such as Richard Branson, Fiona Dawson, Deborah Gillis and Mark A. Weinberger – pledging, “to take concrete action to help accelerate gender parity”.
This is a cause to be celebrated and recognised by all, and is one which resonates with Pebbletree Managing Director, Janni Thornton, who, alongside her husband, has built the catalogue of 5 businesses under the Pebbletree name, from the ground up.
She explains: “There may have been a time when society wrongfully accepted that gender parity wasn’t a topic worth approaching, and some countries continue to accept this, but I am proud to be part of a society and culture where we promote the successes of women, support the development of female figures and businesswomen, and where equality is a reachable target rather than a pipe dream.”
“Here at Pebbletree we recognise that every member of our team is an individual, to be judged and rewarded based on their merit and achievements, regardless of gender, race or sexual orientation.”
Having grown up in Denmark, Janni had the chance to travel to the UK for university, where she began her development from ambitious student, to successful entrepreneur. Working her way up through a number of blue chip companies, gaining vital technical and customer-orientated experience, Janni was determined to mark her mark on the world, and in 2005 her wish came true.
“The birth of Pebbletree, and the launch of Soho66 gave me a sense of accomplishment I hope that all women can feel at some point”, Janni describes. “10 years, and a great number of notable industry awards later, and we couldn’t be more proud of what we have achieved.”
Janni goes on to say: “Whether you are male or female, there are opportunities out there for you to achieve everything you hope for, if you work hard and put your plans in action, you can be a success. At Pebbletree we look to train, support and reward our staff, not based on their gender, but based on their hard work and commitment”.
So take a look around this International Women’s Day, and ask yourself if you are doing enough to promote gender equality.