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Celebrating International Women’s Day #BalanceforBetter

Steven Cheeseman

Steven Cheeseman | Senior Digital Marketing Executive

Friday 8th Mar, 2019

March 8th marks International Women’s Day. A day for us to celebrate women’s achievements, raise awareness against bias and take action for equality. This year’s theme is #BalanceforBetter. We wanted to celebrate just some of the many inspirational women we have working here at PayStream by asking them 4 simple questions…

Laura-Fay Hughes: Internal Recruiter

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

It’s a day to really think about and recognise inspirational women throughout the years and also celebrate your own personal successes in business and at home. As a single Mum with a busy career and child that has an active BMX career, it will make me sit back and be proud of what I do each day instead of worrying that I’m not doing enough.

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

Ensuring there are more high powered women in business and leadership teams.

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

To not put others people’s happiness before my own (excluding my son) , travel more and to have taken that amazing job in London working for Armani when I was 21!

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

I don’t really have very many women in my life, so bit if a tricky one. Kylie for her music! Lol!

Kerry Hull: Marketing Manager

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

We’ve seen in recent times we still live in an age of gender inequality, particularly in business. International women’s day is an opportunity to raise awareness of not only the inequalities that still exist but it’s also an opportunity to recognise, appreciate and celebrate amazing women from all walks of life, around the world. 

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

If I encourage the young women around me to be strong, confident women then I feel I will have played my part in supporting women’s rights.

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

Be the best version of yourself and live your best life because you only get one.

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

My mum <3

Vicky Knight: Lead Accountant

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

I think it is a great opportunity to celebrate us wonderful women in the world, while supporting women’s right. It’s a chance to reflect on the awesome things us ladies have been achieving, while highlight the work that still remains- knowing that many women across the world still don’t receive basic civil rights and protection.  

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

Not being afraid of standing up for things and people I believe in, staying up to date and educated with the world around me and ensure the message passed to younger future females generations is you can be whatever you want to be!   

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

Something I heard recently “anything worth fighting for is a fight worth having”. I wasn’t always the confident person I was today, so I would tell myself not to doubt myself and don’t be afraid to stand up for what you believe in.  Just because someone shouts louder then you, does not necessarily means they are right (probably me doing the shouting these days!).

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

Serena Williams - the definition of a strong women! Dua Lipa - an absolute goddess! Nicola Sturgeon - she’s definitely strong and stable! Meg White (from the white stripes) - awesome drummer and I bet she has some stories to share! My Mum - the strongest, hardworking person I know!  

Mary-Beth Cullen: Customer Care Team Leader

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

As recently as 100 years ago women had very few rights or a say in their own lives and were essentially kept in a “waiting room” until they got married. IWD is important as it reminds us to celebrate the progress we have made and show how far we have come.

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

Having a baby is probably one of the most life changing experiences that a woman can have and the maternity pay that women receive is pretty shambolic. When you put it into perspective a woman has had that little parasite leeching off of her 9 months and then having them drain the life from her even further with night feeds, crying and them soiling themselves anytime the need strikes them. All while trying to live off 3 shillings a week… seems pretty unfair doesn’t it? If I could play any role in women’s rights it would be better maternity pay for women.

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

I’ve worked really hard for everything I’ve achieved but it’s very easy to fall into the trap of feeling like an imposter and thinking that I got to where I am from being at the right place at the right time or that it was just luck. If I could give my younger self any advice I would tell her to not be so apologetic and enjoy your success because you deserve it. I would also tell her to move into a house and not a flat so she can get a dog.

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

I would make a float about Ursula the sea-witch. Ursula was a real BBW who took no prisoners and didn’t hesitate to go after what she wanted. Not that I condone cursing an innocent 16 year old to get your way - I still admire her tenacity. Go on with your bad self hon.

Sally Morris: Head of Operations

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

The opportunity to celebrate the achievements of woman round the world and promote equality for all.

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

Coming from a payroll background the gender pay gap is very topical and I strongly believe in equal pay for work of equal value.

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

Take more risks and challenge more often!

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

My Nana. She may not be in the Top 20 Inspirational Woman or in the National Women’s Hall of Fame, but she was of the few working woman of her time. For part of her career she worked for Christies Hospital in Manchester on the team researching cervical smears. The results of the research were published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health in the 1970’s. Smear tests have saved the lives of about 2000 women per year so I’m extremely proud my Nana was part of the journey to raise awareness to help prevent so many deaths in woman.

Jayne Stirrup: Finance Director

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

A celebration of womens achievements; I think we’re naturally more reserved when it comes to publicising ourselves and celebrating our success.  International Womens Day encourages us to look at the amazing accomplishments of women and the difficulties that have been overcome to triumph.

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

I would like to ensure  women feel their voice is being heard without the constant nagging doubt that they’re viewed as bossy.  Outdated attitudes need to be challenged as they discourage us from talking about important subjects, putting forward ideas and achieving goals.

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

To chill out and enjoy the journey more. 

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

Amelia Earhart, a true pioneer in education, aviation and womens rights.

Sophie Jagger: Operations Senior

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

Finding a balance (#BalanceforBetter) between celebrating women and women’s achievements, and drawing attention to work still to do in areas like the gender pay gap, reproductive rights, political representation, education, domestic violence and other women’s issues worldwide.

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

Remembering to do more than occasional self-righteous retweets! Try to actually put my money where my mouth is by supporting female creators and business owners, and charities focused on women’s issues - some good ones close to home are The Pankhurst Trust/Manchester Women’s Aid and Manchester Action on Street Health (MASH).

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

Be more brave (and go to your lectures, you skiving child).

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

Dolly Parton: rhinestone-encrusted songwriting legend; would put on an amazing show; has donated more than 100 million books to children.

Colette Booth: Outsourced Payroll

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

International Women’s day is a reminder for me that women have not always been afforded the same rights that are considered common practice today. I have been fortunate enough not to have known a time when what we consider basic rights such as voting were not available to women.

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

Personally I feel in today’s day and age Women’s rights shouldn’t need to be referred to separately. We are all equal regardless of gender.

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

To be much less concerned with other people’s thoughts or perceptions. Over time I have learned to still take the advice and guidance of a select few, but in the main be true to myself.

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

My mum. For the majority of my life she has juggled working with raising a family, and in my eyes she could not have got that balance more right. Even now, when I am fully grown up, she continues to be a rock to me and my family. She is a complete inspiration and I couldn’t do without her.

Louise Topham: Agency Service and Support Manager

1. What does International Woman's Day mean to you?

It’s a day to celebrate the achievements of women, but to also highlight the continued inequality that women face. It’s quite shocking that we’re still not at a point where women have equality with men.

2. What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women's rights, today?

As an woman, you must strive to reach your full potential, and not allow inequality to get in your way. The issue is far greater than any one person, so I think the only thing that any individual woman can do is try to lead by example.

3. What advice would you give to your younger self?

Be determined.

4. If you could put on a parade for International Women's Day what woman would put on the main float?

Dolly Parton. She’s an extremely talented and a savvy businesswoman who has proven that you should never judge a book by its cover.

PayStream staff raise £4400 for charity

Over the last year we have taken part in a step-a-thon to raise money for Sports Relief, bake sales, raffles, sweepstakes, pumpkin carving and lots of dressing up!

Read more here