Connecting, inspiring and empowering women to lead the way
On 14th April, WIL Europe held an interactive panel debate to discuss what can be done to ensure that technology addresses rather than perpetuates racial, gender, socioeconomic and other inequalities, and contributes to building a more just society for all. We welcomed a panel of inspiring female speakers from four European countries: Sue Berry, International Diversity Project Manager at Orange; Constanze Osei, Head of Society and Innovation Policy, DACH, at Facebook, Fiona O'Brien, EMEA Chief Channel Officer & Head of Operations at Lenovo, and Anna-Lena Hosenfeld, Managing Director at Digital für Alle ("Digital for All"). The session was moderated by Maija Corinti Salvén, Head of Government Affairs Nordic/Baltic/CH & Wallet at Apple, with a wrap up by Michaela Ben Amara, Business Development & Marketing Manager at Osborne Clarke Belgium. It was followed by a 30-minute networking session.
On 16th February 2021, WIL Europe organised its second “Members Virtual Networking” meet up. At this informal online event, we welcomed 14 Members and their Guests from across Europe to meet and connect with each other.
The event opened with an introduction by our Board Member, Herke van Hulst, during which she revealed WIL Europe’s inspiring new vision, summing up our commitment and ambition: Connecting, Inspiring and Empowering Women to Lead the Way. After this, participants moved to breakout rooms for a networking session.
In small groups, participants shared their views on what lessons they had learnt from the Covid pandemic that were relevant to their professional or personal lives, with a range of perspectives put forward. For some, video calls had allowed them to build deeper relationships with the colleagues further afield. Others found that they had developed a greater appreciation for their friends and family, as well as for the natural world.
Thank you very much to our Members and Guests for joining us on this occasion. We look forward to welcoming you at our next virtual networking event in April 2021.
On the 14th of January 2021, WIL Europe organised a “New Year’s Cocktail” for our Italian Members and Alumni. This was an opportunity for our members living both in and outside of Italy to reconnect in small groups to discuss personal and professional issues from 2020 and to reflect on the year ahead.
The event opened with welcoming remarks from our Board Members and event hosts Emanuela Palazzani and Enrica Jacobacci. WIL Board Member, Pinuccia Contino, also gave introductory remarks, in which she highlighted the importance of adapting WIL’s founding goals of empowering, supporting and educating female leaders in the current sanitary situation through technology, which helps us stay connected. Guests were invited to introduce themselves around the virtual table, before heading to a breakout room for smaller-group discussions.
In breakout rooms, participants discussed a wide range of topics. Among these were how to network effectively in a virtual setting and how to make the most of our networks.
Thank you to very much to our Italian Members, Alumni and Guests who joined us for this online New Year’s Cocktail. We are looking forward to welcoming you, and other members, to similar virtual events over the course of 2021!
On the 16th of December 2020, WIL Europe organised its first “Members Virtual Networking” meet up, an opportunity for our Members to re-connect with their peers from across Europe, in small groups, to discuss personal and professional issues and discover new ideas and ways of thinking.
The event opened with an introduction by our President, Thaima Samman, before members moved to breakout rooms for a networking session. Among the topics discussed, our members considered how to attract more women into STEM careers, including through the promotion of role models for younger women in the field, and also shared their tips on how they are coping with working from home and managing teams at distance in the current crisis.
Thank you very much to the participants for joining us on this occasion. We look forward to welcoming you at our next virtual networking event in early 2021!
During this webinar, Marlene Rosemarie Madsen* took stock of the actions taken so far at the EU level and presented the outlines of the European Commission’s comprehensive and coordinated response to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. We discussed about the strategy to deal with health emergency needs, to support economic activity during the crisis and to prepare the ground for the long-term economic recovery. And most importantly, how to do so in a spirit of solidarity.
*Marlene Rosemarie Madsen is the Deputy Head of the Cabinet of Commissioner Ferreira, responsible for Cohesion and Reform. Besides the role of Deputy, she is also responsible for Structural Reform Support.
From May 2018 to December 2019 she was Head of the revenue administration and public financial management Unit, in the Commission’s Structural Reform Support Service. Prior to becoming Head of Unit, Marlene spent nearly 3 years in the private office of Vice President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness. During the last year she was Deputy Head of Cabinet, and for 3 months also acting Head of Cabinet. Besides taking care of horizontal files, she was also responsible for financial services and the Capital Markets Union.
Prior to joining the Cabinet, she worked in two different parts of the European Commission. This includes 3 years as a senior economist in the Chief Economist unit in DG TRADE and more than 3 years in the policy coordination and strategy unit in DG ECFIN.
Before joining the Commission January 2009, Marlene worked in two Member States' governments. She worked several years as an economist for the Danish government and then moved to the UK where she worked as an economist for the British government for 5 years, the last position held was as Head of Europe and Single Market economics.
Marlene is a Danish citizen and studied economics at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark.
After a first meditation session at the beginning of April, on the 28th May, 11th and 25th June 2020, Beatrice Iulini offered our network a series of online meditation sessions on the topics: From fighting to flowing, Communicating through presence and Bringing in steadiness in dynamism.
Throughout these sessions, the participants had the opportunity to clear their mind during these turbulent times and acquire techniques that will encourage self-care, personal improvement, and help them feel empowered. These are skills that we at WIL Europe consider fundamental for leadership!
Thank you to all the attendees for your participation and to Beatrice for such energizing and inspiring sessions!
For the last (but not least) webinar of the series organized together with our Premium partner Orange, on the 23rd of June 2020, we organized an online discussion about “Leading in Turbulent Times”.
Our guest speaker for this session was Katherine Corich, the Godmother of the 5th edition of our Women Talent Pool program (WTP), and the discussion was moderated by Astrik Gabrielyan, Talent Manager at Orange and current participant of the program.
Founder and Chair at Sysdoc, Associate Fellow-University of Oxford and former Commercial Pilot, Katherine shared with us her experience of leading, in a time of crisis, a global and thriving company (that she founded at 25 years-old), highlighting the attitude and skills needed to approach the current and coming uncertainty in a way that maximizes one’s resilience and organization, department or team’s strengths and creates opportunities.
It was a great occasion both for Katherine and the participants of the 5th edition of the Women Talent Pool program to get to get to know each other, at least virtually!
On the 18th of June 2020, WIL Europe organized an online workshop entitled 'Pitch & Talk', together with our Premium partner Orange and with the association Voxfemina*, experienced in raising awareness on this issue and in media training for women.
Many thanks to Valérie Tandeau de Marsac, Lawyer, Founder and President of Vox Femina, who shared with us the mission and purposes of the association, and to guest speakers Isabelle Hilali, Founder and CEO of Datacraft, Morgane Rollando, Impact Investor, and Marie Schneegans, CEO and Founder of Workwell, who shared their advice and tips on how to better pitch one’s skills and competencies so as to create an impact in public appearances and better profile oneself as expert and leader.
We look forward to welcoming you at our upcoming initiatives.
*Voxfemina is an organization advocating exposure of female experts especially to the information media, as interview partners and panelists on a range of sectors and issues.
As part of a series of online debates and workshops in partnership with Orange to replace this year’s Annual Gathering, WIL Europe organized an online debate on "Purpose Beyond Profit", which took place on the 12th of June 2020.
Moderated by our Board Member Nida Januskis, Associate Dean of Advancement, INSEAD, this session included guest speakers Agnes De Leersnyder, Chief Strategy Officer of Orange, Fiona O’Brien, EMEA Chief Channel Officer & Head of Operations of Lenovo and Cynthia Sanfilippo, Vice President for Public Affairs of L’Oréal.
During the debate, the speakers shared their vision, their experience and policies on defining and implementing a new corporate purpose, which goes beyond merely maximizing profits and takes into account the lessons learned from the Covid-19 outbreak crisis.
Thanks to all the attendees and to Nida, Agnès, Cynthia and Fiona for this great discussion!
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, WIL Europe has been striving to ensure that the network provides a safe place for our members and talents to support each other and share advice and best practices.
On the 26th of May 2020, our Board Member Marina Niforos, Chair, Corporate Governance and Nominations Member of the Board of Directors of Hellenic Corporation of Assets and Participations S.A., led a webinar on the “Lessons from the crisis: Women and Leadership in the Aftermath”.
During this interactive session, Marina shared the results of our Covid-19 survey and led a discussion on
how our members, talents and women in general may have been impacted by the crisis, the challenges they are facing and how we can best support them and join forces for the post-coronavirus period.
Thanks to all the attendees and to Marina for this great conversation!
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