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Event Report: WiN UK Powers Together

WiN UK Powers Together

Our fourth annual conference was a huge success and I want to offer my thanks to all the speakers, sponsors, workshop hosts and delegates for being so open and enabling such a brilliant day of discussion.

We explored what power means and how to truly harness it to make a difference, it isn’t about having power over others, but power with others to create change.

Our keynote speaker, Jo Swinson MP explored this in detail. Having been first elected to Parliament at 25 and becoming a Business Minister and Minster for Women and Equalities during the coalition government, she understands the power of power!

And, being responsible for the introduction of policies on shared parental leave and gender pay gap reporting, she also understands the issues which WiN UK seeks to address.

“Don’t feel you need to fix everything, but you do need to fix the bits you can” was her closing remark and it really struck a chord.

It reminded me of Adrienne Kelbie’s call to action closing our 2017 conference where she asked delegates to just do one thing to create a foundation for change. She reflected on that in her closing speech this year, saying that no-one listened to her – people went out and did lots of things.

This year, she wants people to switch on their power and I hope you do.

We wanted people to take away a moment from this conference. Something to inspire a positive change and seeing the energy in the room and the hearing the lively conversations, I think we achieved that aim!

It was great to hear Dave Ellis from Jacobs describe himself as a WiN UK conference veteran and to hear him and the organisations signed up to the Industry Charter talk about the importance of diversity and inclusion.

Discussing the need for an agile workplace to attract the best people, the ways they are trying to make all levels of the business understand the importance of diversity as well as the pitfalls of unconscious bias was something we could only have wished for four years ago.

Our first panellists of the day were from all different stages of their career. It was heartening to hear Deanna Pearson, who has recently finished her apprenticeship, say that she can see change happening.

Fiona Rayment OBE said to take your power you need to shape your own agenda but its important to recognise differing personalities; “We need to enable everyone to have a say. Some people just need a little more time!”

Our awards finalists showed just what can be achieved if you use a little of your power; each of the winners were inspiring and deserving.

The afternoon’s workshops put much of the morning’s discussion into practice with sessions looking at finding, using and sustaining your personal power; cognitive diversity; managing relationships; why you should ask why and resilience.

We’ve had great feedback on the sessions and thanks must go to each of the organisations for offering their support.

I’m already excited about next year’s event! If you have any feedback or questions, please do email us at

You can also take a look at all the pictures from the conference at and if you search for #WiNUKPowerTogether on Twitter you’ll be able to see a selection of tweets from the day.

And remember as men and women, what we share is more powerful than what divides us. I am inviting you to step forward, to be seen to speak up, to take your power, to be the "he for she" to be the "she for she", and to ask yourself if not me, who? If not now, when?

Until next year…