A virtual event that took place on International Women’s Day (Wednesday 8 March) saw more than 750 colleagues from across the business joining forces to learn more about what a network is, equity compared to equality and the business benefits that come with having more women in leadership.
All colleagues were invited to get involved in the network, which is set to be chaired by national accounts controller Abbie Hackwell and supported by vice-chair and head of transport Maria Chittenden.
Booker people director Rebecca Mallows said: “Booker is changing and we are clear where we need to go.
“We are upskilling our leaders and connecting our colleagues and this new network is a real step change."
She added: “We have had an overwhelmingly positive response to the launch and are really looking forward to the changes Women In Booker is going to achieve.”
The initiative aims to raise awareness of gender imbalance, create networking opportunities as well as to support, inspire and motivate female careers across the business.
The network is sponsored by members of the Booker Executive including Sheila Gallagher, Rebecca Mallows and Helen Williams alongside Stuart Hyslop – a male ally to the network.
Following the launch, a colleague steering committee is being created in a bid to help form and shape the developments of the future.
Women in Booker chair Abbie Hackwell said: “I’m really excited and proud to represent our colleagues as chair of the new network.
“Championing women is something I care passionately about and we are going to create new opportunities for our colleagues to really connect, share experiences and support one another to progress.
“There are so many positive changes to come from this, which we will achieve together. I have been mentored and found it to be a transformative and positive experience that brought so much to me, both professionally and personally and this is just one area we can do better.
“The network is not exclusively for women and I’m really encourage of the diversity of colleagues now onboarding with the network.
“It has been an inspiring time and now we have a lot of work to do.”