Female business owners, along with Sydney’s Lord Mayor Clover Moore, are calling on Sydney startups to make gender equality a core business objective in order to achieve higher productivity, better performance and more effective decision making.

“The data shows that having gender parity strengthens businesses and improves profits, but I believe it needs to be framed as part of the values of a company,” Andrea Myles, CEO of China Australia Millennial Project, said.

Andrea Myles will be a key speaker at a free ‘City Thought Leaders’ seminar discussing women-led businesses, to be held in Sydney on October 25.

CEO Andrea Myles says gender parity is essential

CEO Andrea Myles says gender parity is essential. Image: Supplied

Voted one of Australia’s most influential women, Andrea says businesses must focus on gender pay equality.

“Startups should have iron-clad targets that women will make up 50 per cent of everything they do, and every person in the team and company should be driving towards that goal unless you design for inclusion, there will be exclusion,” she said.

The seminar is run on behalf of the City of Sydney and asks the question: What does it take to navigate a pathway to success?

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the seminar will offer female business leaders and prospective startups a place to network and become part of Sydney’s dynamic and diverse business community.

“We know companies that value diversity will attract and retain a high performing workforce,” Clover Moore said. “This event will be an ideal opportunity for established businesses and startups throughout Sydney to learn from the most innovative minds in business who are shaping an agile and equal business landscape for the future.”

Clover also said City of Sydney is committed to leading by example, with their 2016-17 gender pay equity review showing more female employees in higher paying jobs across their company.

“When you compare male and female employees at the same salary level, the City has a gender pay gap of 2.8 per cent compared to a national gap of 15.3 per cent.”

Other speakers at the ‘City Thought Leaders’ event are Sarah Gibson, co-founder of Chippendale-based furniture and design studio Design By Them; and architects Amelia Holliday and Isabelle Toland, co-directors of Aileen Sage Architects whose projects include the award-winning Prince Alfred Park and Juanita Nielsen community centre upgrades.

“I’m hoping this seminar will inspire women to step up and take a chance. I want to encourage women to start their own businesses,” Ms Holliday said.

“The big message for me as a business owner is that this is your chance to design your own life and have a workplace that works for you – and that is also a successful and viable business.”

City Thought Leaders seminar
Date: Wednesday, 25 October, 2017
Time: 6.30pm
Cost: free, but bookings are essential

For bookings and event information, click here.

Feature image supplied.