International Women’s Day

by Johnny Clayton on Friday, 8 March 2019

(Photograph by Richard Walker;

Most people work hard, every day, to create a more gender-balanced world. International Women’s Day is the specific day where we get to shout about it. YEP Global is a diverse networking group that not only supports young people in the early stages of their careers, but has a near 50:50 gender balance. To celebrate International Women’s Day, we asked the chair of our Leeds chapter and some of its members to their views.

YEP Leeds’ female membership is over 50%. With over 300 members, that’s no mean feat. The 12-member committee panel is also split equally between men and women. That’s certainly #BalanceForBetter.

Emma Murgatroyd, YEP Leeds Chair, said: “I’m proud to chair a committee that is so balanced in terms of gender. We worked very hard at the beginning to ensure that the people we approached to be on the committee brought different skill sets to the table, along with being brilliant individuals that would share our vision for YEP Leeds. The membership we have attracted since further proves the point – over half of them are women.”

All YEP Leeds events reflect the members and their interests. There are no stuffy golf days to be found! Members are encouraged to showcase their colourful personalities through a wide range of activities – the TRIB3 networking whilst doing a high-intensity workout event in January is a prime example of that!

Nancy Bradford, of Turner & Townsend, has been attending our events for the past year and said: “It’s great to be able to build my professional network through an organisation that encourages diversity, especially amongst women in construction through a range of different events, environments and committee members.” 

Nancy isn’t alone in her opinion, and it’s not only women who remark. There has been plenty of feedback from men as well and the general consensus is that diversity enables each event to be well-balanced and more engaging, which is extremely positive and proves that what YEP Leeds is doing works. There are male and female speakers at every single event and with 10 events under our belt, this is a huge step forward for gender equality in the property and construction industry.

Mia Hodgkinson, Committee member, added: “It’s so incredible to be part of such a diverse group of people. As soon as I met Emma, I felt really excited by YEP and everything it stands for. We’re a mini community of sorts and I love how different our individual roles are, but how much they work when we all come together.

“As a woman in business, it isn’t always easy to get your voice heard and this is particularly true of the property market which is very male-dominated. However, YEP Leeds has a great split of men and women, we are encouraged to participate equally and we all get our chance to be heard. We’re just a forward-thinking group of people with a mission to promote our great city and the amazing things it has to offer. Watch this space – 2019 is going to be an incredible year for YEP Leeds.”

Keep an eye out on the YEP Leeds events page for what’s coming up and pop along.

To all our female members across the YEP Global network, have a wonderful and empowering International Women’s Day. #BalanceForBetter

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