Something Extra | Wednesday
For generations, the African proverb ‘Each one teach one’ has helped us pass on knowledge. Today it fulfils much of the same purpose, and though the lessons may differ, the intent is the same: people taking the time to teach their skills to others. As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we asked four women who embody this principle to impart knowledge that will arm the next generation of women leaders.
How are you helping to empower other women?
Kathryn Phipps, ambassador and plenipotentiary of Jamaica to the Republic of Cuba:
“I think it is important to assure women and girls that they are worthy and deserving. I try to encourage them to ignore the naysayers and detractors, and believe in themselves and their experiences, and their knowledge. I try to be a listening ear, an understanding ear, knowing that each of us has a different hill to climb. For some time now, we have seen women achieving in all walks of life. I point to these women as examples of what is possible, even with seemingly insurmountable obstacles before us. Recently, I find myself repeating to young women the words of the outstanding 22-year-old National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman, ‘For there is always light. If only we are brave enough to see it. If only we are brave enough to be it.’”
What issue are you choosing to challenge?
Stacy-Ann Smith, creator, executive producer and host of It’s A Woman’s World and CEO of Danrak Productions:
“I challenge the idea that time alone can heal all wounds. Life throws curve balls at us all, and we need to be deliberate about our mental and emotional well-being. As a people, we don’t pay enough attention to this. So many people are broken and unable to maximise their full potential, or are hurting others because of their own state of mind.”
What advice would you give to a young woman joining the workforce?
Darlene Jones, executive director, Jamaica Institute of Financial Services:
“Remember you are writing your story. Be the best at whatever you do, learn as much as you can, and take advantage of the opportunities you receive to create a great impression, and prioritise professional development.”
What is your advice for the next generation of women leaders?
Caren Scott-Dixon, head of enterprise risk management and group compliance, Sagicor Group Jamaica:
“The key to my success as a woman in leadership is my reliance on God, as well as my passion to see others grow and develop, which allows me to build other leaders from within my team. As women in leadership, let your voice be heard, and never compromise your integrity or character. Identify the strengths in your team and build on those, and turn their weaknesses into strengths. Treat your team with respect. Once they know that you care about their personal and professional development; they are willing to move mountains, invest personal time and energy to ensure that goals and objectives are met.”