Author: Nic Parmaksizian, Capco Digital, Partner
Published: Monday 11 March, 2019

Growing up in France, I spent my formative years surrounded by strong and independent women. Cut to my time in the professional world, and I have had the good fortune to work with many inspiring female CEOs and leaders in the finance industry, many of whom provided me with mentorship and insights which helped shape my career trajectory.

Seeing first-hand the very real and monumental struggles that women go through balancing and juggling multiple commitments, made me appreciate, empathize and relate to women starting from a young age. Through family members, friends, colleagues, bosses and clients, I have learned many valuable lessons that have carried me through my life and career and made me a champion and proud advocate of women, both in the workplace and outside.

From them, I have learned that many women that I have worked with:

  • Promote kindness and empathy by intuitively being attuned to others' needs and meeting them without being asked;
  • Are sensitive, compassionate, empathetic and self-disciplined;
  • Realize that words matter, and choose the right ones more effectively and deliberately;
  • Build up self-worth by engaging with the wider world rather than retreating from it;
  • Are wonderful listeners, communicators and react with controlled emotions, reason and thought.

This year on International Women’s Day, we address the theme of #BalanceforBetter, and I have been thinking about how we can apply this concept to the business world and Capco. Commemorating the accomplishments of women every March is wonderful, but we can do more to consistently engage employees and managers in the global conversation and to learn from and cascade these powerful advancements across our organization. And, we need the involvement of both men and women.

I will continuously aim to be a champion of diversity, equality and empowerment in the workplace, and urge all senior leadership and staff to engage too through these simple behaviors:

Challenge stereotypes and biases – by eliminating statements that limit women and removing barriers to progress, staying true to the “Be Yourself At Work” ethos.

Promote the positive visibility of women – by extending opportunities to women and selecting women as representatives and leaders at the business table.

Change beliefs and actions – by helping eliminate inappropriate behavior and actively contributing to changing the status quo.

Celebrate women’s achievements – by making sure credit is given to women’s contributions and by valuing women’s individual and collective successes.

In today's climate, with more women in political and business leadership positions than ever before, and with movements like #MeToo and #TimesUp at the forefront of conversations, there is now a renewed sense of urgency and responsibility to be as educated as possible. Knowledge is the power that will allow us all to work towards a #BalanceforBetter. As we celebrate the achievements of so many women through history who have overcome barriers, as well as the courageous women AND men who are working hard to shed light on the inequalities still present, I challenge myself, and you, to join them to become one of the bold.