International Women's Day is a global day marking a critical call to action for accelerating gender parity. But it is also designed to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women — to ensure that their world-changing achievements don't go unsung. This year's official theme, #ChooseToChallenge, calls on us all to challenge gender bias and inequality, be that at work or in our personal lives, and to choose to seek out and uplift women's achievements.
At Yext, we have amazing female colleagues working all over the world, and we thought there was no better way to show our support for this important day than to hear their thoughts on what IWD means to them. All of our contributors have also shared a book recommendation from a female author, providing a vibrant mix of titles for you to explore as you think about this year's theme.
From challenge comes change, so let's all choose to challenge.
Amanda Chen, Senior Manager, Sales Operations & Strategy, EMEA
What do you do at Yext? I lead the Sales Operations team in EMEA with analysts based in London, Berlin, and Paris. We partner closely with the EMEA Leadership team across regions and functions on GTM strategy, forecasting and pipeline management, territory design, as well as sales system and process enablement to scale efficiently and drive the business forward!
What does IWD mean to you?International Women's Day is a day to celebrate, recognise, and lift up all the amazing, diverse women in our communities from family to friends to colleagues and teammates. It is incredibly important to bring awareness to the progress and wins, both big and small, that we've made thus far, but even more importantly, acknowledge how much further we need to go.
Amanda's book recommendation:The Power, Naomi Alderman
Charli Rogers, Vice President, International Client Services
What do you do at Yext? I run the Customer Success team across EMEA, with teams based in London, Berlin, Paris and Milan. Our teams help Yext clients to adopt and see value in our technology, with the ultimate aim of retaining and growing these relationships.
What does IWD mean to you? International Women's Day is a great opportunity to celebrate the power of women, whilst reflecting on the work which needs to be done to structural and social changes needed to make equal opportunity possible. There is still so much more work to be done to level the playing field, despite significant progress being made in recent years. Inequity and inequality are still too common, and it is up to everyone, not just women, to address it. When women are confident in bringing their best and true selves to their work, amazing things are possible!
Charli's book recommendation: Glennon Doyle, Untamed
Stefania Fussi, Director, Client Success
What do you do at Yext? I work at building and growing relationships and platform optimisation with our Italian client base, working closely with our services functions and cross teams to make sure our clients can be well represented and supported throughout their journey in becoming Search-ready as well as making sure we can replicate and scale best practices across our regions.
What does IWD mean to you? International Women Day to me means celebrating all women! It means recognising the leadership qualities each one has within herself and the way they demonstrate these qualities in all aspects of their life. It means the powerful resilience and commitment women show at all levels. It's an opportunity to remind the world women are a source of admiration, hope and inspiration through all their experiences and the grace and compassion with which they navigate life; whether that is working from home, leading a company, dealing with pregnancy or overcoming difficult workplace and social situations. I hope we all keep challenging inequality and contribute to forging a more inclusive world! Cheers to all women of history, those sharing our present and who will build our future!
Stefania's book recommendation: The Inner Edge: The 10 Practices of Personal Leadership by Joelle Kristin Jay
Alicia Phuah, Director, Client Success EMEA
What does IWD mean to you? International Women's Day to me means celebrating the strong women who have forged the way forward and a reminder that there is still so much more that needs to be done. This is a day where women are reminded of how we need to continue to lift each other up.
Alicia's book recommendation: Such A Fun Age, Kiley Reid
Mel Bickford – Director, Client Success EMEA
What do you do at Yext? I run a brilliant team of strategic Customer Success Managers who own our customer relationships from end to end across a broad range of countries, cultures & timezones! We partner with our clients to ensure a strong relationship that drives value, helping each unique business across a plethora of industries ensure their business goals are achieved through our partnerships.
What does IWD mean to you? IWD is a welcome reminder of all the amazing women in each of our lives, no matter how far away, especially during such a challenging pandemic where so many of us have been separated from our loved ones. It is a day to take time to reach out to those female superheroes who matter most to us and tell them what makes them special to you. This day isn't just about women though – it's a day for every human on this planet to think about what they can personally do to progress the equality agenda on every front. We have a lot of work left yet and need all hands on deck.
Mel's book recommendation: Dare to Lead, Brené Brown
Mari Shimizu, Senior Director, Japan Marketing
What do you do at Yext? I am the head of Japan Marketing and I am based in Tokyo. I have been covering PR and Marketing since Yext started a business in Japan.
What does IWD mean to you? International Women's Day is a day to honor the courage and determination brought about by the women who have played such an amazing role. I would like to make this a day for both men and women to think about and act on gender equality as a day to think about women's lives in Japan. Happy International Women's Day (IWD)!
Mari's book recommendation: The Professor's Beloved Equation, Yoko Ogawa