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Gender Network Chairs: the role of executive sponsors

May 20
Date and time
Thu, 20 May  @  10:30  -  12:00
No charge for organisations who work with us on gender
Webinar United Kingdom
Reserve your place
No charge for organisations who work with us on gender

Thu, 20 May 2021  @  10:30  –  12:00

This event is an opportunity for gender network chairs/leads to come together in a confidential environment to discuss common issues and good practice, along with solutions. This event will focus on how executive sponsors and allies can support gender equality in the workplace.

Executive sponsors provide visible leadership on an issue and can drive actions. These can include setting targets, briefing recruitment agencies and supporting mentoring and sponsorship. They can also bring their experience and expertise to employee networks, providing guidance as well as bringing challenges faced by the groups to the leadership team. Their seniority within the organisation is invaluable in helping gender networks contribute to the organisation’s diversity and inclusion strategy to achieving a gender balanced organisation.

Allies are change agents who recognise their unearned privileges and take action to promote a diverse workplace. They actively promote and aspire to advance a culture of inclusion through intentional, positive and conscious efforts that benefit people as a whole1.

Employee networks or resource groups play an important part in supporting organisations create inclusive workplaces.

This event will explore how executive sponsors and allies can influence the diversity and inclusion agenda. Gender Network Chairs: the role of executive sponsors will discuss:

  • The executive sponsor’s role in supporting networks and driving forward gender inclusion.
  • The role allies can play in advancing promotion of a diverse workplace.

Read about how to be effective ally in an anti-racism context in the Business in the Community (BITC) toolkitsAnti-Racism and Allyship in the Workplace: A Brief Guide and Racism and Inappropriate Behaviours: Five Actions for Allies.


This event is only open to organisations who work with BITC on gender. It is open to executive sponsors and those who chair gender networks.

About Business in the Community’s gender campaign

Business in the Community’s gender campaign exists to accelerate progress towards a truly equal working world. A range of issues contribute to persistent gender inequality at work, including:

  • inflexible expectations about how and where work is done which can make it hard for women, who still do the bulk of caring for children, to combine paid work with other responsibilities.
  • biased attitudes around who can do certain jobs or hold senior roles can see prejudice and discrimination hold women’s careers back, sometimes unintentionally.
  • poor working cultures, where women and others do not feel included or respected and in some cases experience sexual harassment which can push women out of the workplace.

 Learn more about BITC’s gender campaign to see why and how we are tackling these issues.

Contact details and further information

For more information, contact Ellie Jefford, Events Coordinator at BITC or BITC’s events team.

Full joining instructions will be sent before the event.

Following government advice on social distancing, all BITC events over the coming months will be delivered remotely via digital technology.

Business in the Community is creating a skilled and inclusive workforce for today and tomorrow


 1. Sheree Atcheson (2018) The Key To Unlocking The Power Of Diversity, Forbes, 30 November.