International Women’s Day

1024 535 Jess Easby

International Women’s Day 8th March 2024 

Imagine a gender equal world. A world free of bias, stereotypes, and discrimination. A world that’s diverse, equitable, and inclusive. A world where difference is valued and celebrated. Together we can forge women’s equality.  

Collectively we can all #InspireInclusion 

With a 55/45 female/male split in our team leaders, our female team leaders have been sharing how they were inspired into a leadership position and how they in turn now try to inspire others into leadership roles. 

Elizabeth Mills, Director 

I realised early in my career the important role women play in business and was lucky enough to work alongside several professional, intuitive and inspirational women who set the bar very high for me. Equally, I now feel so lucky to work alongside some talented and committed women who offer a diverse skill set, drive our success and always deliver.  


Jo Nickell-Lean, HR Manager 

I was inspired to getting into a leadership role as I worked for a company that was growing very fast at that time.  We recruited a diverse range of people, we had a mixture of mature and young inspirational leaders at the top, who all shared the same vision, with clear goals and we had a dedicated training team who in conjunction with those senior managers encouraged and inspired others to grow and develop, including myself. Personalised training was given to support those individuals too, whether that be in house training or encouraging individuals to do external professional qualification/study. I could see other colleagues progressing and I too wanted to develop and was lucky to work closely with Elizabeth and Grant who very much encouraged me to choose a different career path and move into HR.  

In my role now, I take my responsibility to help others on the same journey of self-discovery and development very seriously and love to see my colleagues being given both opportunity and encouragement.


Beth Irwin, Client Services Team Leader (Support) 

For me, a leadership position has always been something for me to aspire to; wanting to surpass my own expectations and challenge others’ perception of me whilst effecting a rewarding and vital role. When I was in primary school, our headmistress was beloved by all who knew her and she was such a strong female influence in my life – taking over from her ex-military father, she had big boots to fill and a lot of parents’ expectations to meet. Always dependable, she really inspired me to be that robust and reliable figure in others’ lives, and looking back, I’m sure that she subconsciously influenced my decision to work my way towards a team leader position and collaborate with

As part of the mentoring programme, I work on a one-to-one basis with disadvantaged young women across the North East to break through the glass and class ceilings and help them realise their own potential. Some of these girls are already in ‘leadership’ positions without even realising it; looking after siblings or cooking their family’s meals and being part of allows me to help them to understand their unique strengths, apply them to a professional perspective and expand their further ambitions.


Kelly Slater, Client Servicing Team Leader (Corporate & Technical) 

I have been at Ellis Bates for just shy of ten years now and throughout that time, I have been lucky enough to work alongside many incredible women – all of whom have supported and motivated me to get to the role I am currently in, leading our Corporate and Technical Administration Team. 

I have two young children so managing my work and home life is a definite juggling act, but I hope that I, like all of the fabulous women I work with, prove that women really can do it all! 💪 


Jayne Graves, Head of Marketing 

My first inspiring female was definitely my Mum who juggled work and family life and managed to be brilliant at both. My primary school Head Mistress declared ‘you are all going to be knowledge super-heroines’ and so began a lifelong love of self-learning and encouraged by home and school went onto undergraduate and masters university degrees to underpin my leadership journey. 

In my career I have met some simply astounding women, whose light you cannot help but follow and they set the tone for everyone in the room and showed how to help everyone be the very best version of themselves. In my role now, the greatest compliment I could be paid would be that I had helped someone on their path to career or personal success and work towards doing exactly that every day. #InspireInclusion

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