AFA Inspire NSW – Roundtable

At the beginning of March, the NSW Chapter of the Association of Financial Advisers’ Inspire initiative hosted a roundtable to discuss some of the key issues facing women in finance roles.

Attendees represented both financial advice firms and wealth management groups, and came from a variety of backgrounds. The one clear similarity was that all were passionate about addressing the gender inequality that exists within financial services.

The discussion was led by a panel of inspiring female leaders: Fiona Navarro, formerly the General Manager of MLC’s Apogee Financial Planning, AFA Adviser of the Year, Eleanor Dartnall, and AFA President, Deborah Kent. Among the issues raised were:

  • A question over why there are so few female-led licensees or women in senior roles within dealer groups
  • How to give women the confidence to take the ‘leap of faith’ needed to become a business owner
  • The need for business leaders and management to identify and nurture female talent, particularly because women are less likely than men to put themselves forward for recognition
  • The importance of having the support of family, particularly partners/spouses
  • Why flexibility in the workplace is not the only way to attract more female staff – should be a focus on success rather than flexibility
  • The need for women to let go of the idea of being ‘perfect’

Host of the event and NSW AFA Inspire Chair, Dominique Bergel-Grant, said she was delighted at the engagement achieved during the two-hour session.

“There were some fantastic talking points, and I feel like everyone had a chance to contribute. The next step is to take some of these learnings and use them to develop our activity plan for the next twelve months,” Dominique said.

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