As advocacy group, Rise, enters its second year championing and supporting women in the broadcasting industry, IBC365 speaks with participants from Avid, BT and Deluxe.
Rise was launched at IBC2017 with the primary mission to help advance the careers of women in non-craft roles working across the broadcast industry.
Rise founder Sadie Groom conducted a survey which found 1,500 manufacturers and service companies had less than 2% women in chief executive roles and only 10% of manufacturers had women on their boards or in senior executive teams.
Since launching, Rise has supported 40 mentor buddy schemes. In 2018 there were 17 partners and this year growing demand saw an unprecedented amount of applications with 23 successful mentor and mentee matches already underway in its award-winning six month programme.
The participants benefit from three main pillars: monthly informal meetups, industry opportunities and a training programme that aims to support women to strengthen and enhance their career pathways with personal brand management and deliverable action plans.
Rise director Carrie Wootten tells IBC365 ‘The demand for the mentoring programme goes beyond the UK with requests for programme to be launched in Europe and the US, which we are starting to look at’.
She adds: “The mentoring programme was designed to support and promote women from across the industry. The aims were, and continue to be, to help build their confidence, develop their understanding of the industry, to support their career development and enable the women to network with a wide range of contacts from across the sector.’
The participants come from a variety of backgrounds at various job role levels and stages of their career.
“Mentees are getting value as well as the mentors, the networking opportunities are really great and we all benefit from a shared learning experience.” Anne-Louise Buick, Avid
Avid vice president global field and channel marketing Anne-Louise Buick has been involved with Rise since its inception volunteering as a mentor. She brings more than 20 years of broadcast technology experience and not just from a vendor side. She explains how the programme has helped her support her mentees and guide their career pathways.
“Mentees are getting value as well as the mentors, the networking opportunities are really great and we all benefit from a shared learning experience,” she says.
Recalling some six years ago on a flight to the NAB Show she was one of only six women travelling to Las Vegas for the trade show, while the IBC Show hosted “young females wearing not very much.” Pointing to the gender discrepancy, she notes that change is coming and the balance across is the industry is improving.
Buick adds: “Rise is a great initiative and superb organisation bringing balance and diversity to the forefront of the industry but there is long way to go, there are not enough women in leadership roles, but it is evolving.”
The retention of women in the workforce across many business sectors has been disproportion for years, whilst changing this ethos is on the agenda, its groups like Rise which are developing functional solutions.
Buick says: “Everybody knows and is supportive of addressing a better gender balance because women are still disproportionally paid less and take on more child care, there are more general social issue here as well as industry problems.
“Some countries have done a lot better about tackling that balance.”
Rise is opening the opportunity to educate participants on the roles and jobs prospects beyond the front of camera roles or writing programmes but the other critical positions that necessary for the overall success of the industry.
On supporting women in the industry, Buick says: “There is nothing massively glaring we are butting our heads against at the moment; however, the broadcast industry is moving and is driven by technology, innovation and by the consumer.
“We are all here to do one thing which is deliver content for the appetite.”
- Read more: Rising up: Mentoring women in broadcast
Deluxe Entertainment Service Group marketing and communications assistant
2019 Rise mentee
Stockdale entered the broadcast industry nearly two years ago when she joined Deluxe. She was eager to have a formal mentor to help establish her career, she tells IBC365.
She applied for the programme after working on the press campaign at Deluxe, which has sponsored Rise for the last two years.
She recalls: “I applied for Rise because I had seen and heard first-hand the value that previous mentees had gained from the scheme. I was still relatively new to the industry, and wanted a way to expand my skills, experience and network.
“I wanted to challenge myself and I saw this as an opportunity to build my confidence and learn from someone who had built a successful career in the industry.”
Only a few months into the scheme and Stockdale has already started to see changes and has set career goals whilst building a supportive network of peers to aid in her career progression.
She adds: “At any given time if I’m having a challenge or need a different perspective, I have access to a wonderfully supportive group of women from across the industry.
“It’s a network that would have taken me years to build organically, and even then we wouldn’t share this bond of going through this brilliant experience together.”
During a Rise networking evening Stockdale met Digital Production Partnership (DPP) marketing manager Jayne de Ville, who was actively recruiting for a marketing executive to join the team and coincided with Stockdale’s own job hunt.
Stockdale joins the DPP next Monday, explaining: “The scheme has literally helped me find the next step in my career and I wouldn’t have met Jayne or heard about this opportunity if it weren’t for Rise.”
BT sales and business development
2019 Rise mentee
Drew started a business management degree apprentice at BT focussing on the media and broadcast department in October 2018 working on an annual rotational programme across the various divisions of the firm to explore new job roles and business areas.
She tells IBC365: “New to the broadcast industry, I am keen to expand my network and understand the different components of the broadcast sector outside of BT, including post-production and broadcasting.
“The Rise mentorship programme is a fantastic way to network in the industry and gain the support of a mentor outside of your company, as well as having the ability to liaise with the other mentors and mentees.”
Rise works on building a real sense of community amongst the mentors and mentees, particularly within an industry that is male dominated.
Drew explains: “Invariably due to the technical side of the industry and the lack of encouragement for women to enter the sector, the gender imbalance across the industry is prevalent.
“However, this is where the Rise programme is very important, promoting women working in the industry and building a collaborative group that will hopefully inspire and enhance female career progression in the industry.”