Global Travel Group Cherie Richards commercial director

Cherie from Global Travel Group on the power of women

Cherie Richards, commercial director, Global Travel Group, discusses the importance of women in the workplace and how her own Global Network of Women initiative is helping the push towards equality in the travel industry.

One topic that continues to motivate and comfort me is the ever-increasing leap forward in gender equality and recognition of the invaluable role women have to play in the workplace.

As I write and look ahead to the coming weeks and months, I’m happy to say I have a diary filled with events that focus on just this recognition. First on the agenda on March 8 is International Women’s Day (IWD), a worldwide event that this year is endorsing equality with the message #EachforEqual. The last couple of years have seen some of the biggest steps forward as more and more new opportunities open up across the board for women. For me, personally, I feel the focus should be on men and women working together rather than trying to outdo each other. We each deserve a seat at the table.

IWD aims to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women as well as marking a call to action to accelerate women’s equality and deliver real and positive change. Much of this ambition and sentiment was the driving force behind me establishing the Global Network of Women (GNOW) initiative, which is now in its third year and its next event quickly follows IWD, taking place on March 10. Developed to champion the role of women in travel, today it has become an active forum for members to network, learn and share best practice with invited colleagues from across the industry. Insights on important issues like how to manage wellbeing and mental health in the workplace, growth in LGBT holidays and how to build a business are shared and discussed not just by women, but importantly by men too.

Equality can be achieved in many ways – not just between men and women. Since first launching the GNOW in 2017, it has grown to become a regular event which takes place in different regional locations across the country. No doubt the capital is a great venue for any meeting, but taking a trip to London isn’t always viable for agents that are based nationwide. Mindful of this, I was keen when putting the GNOW together as a forum for sharing experience and knowledge that we offered the exclusive opportunity to Global Members across the country. Our members always embrace the opportunity to meet with other members, and this initiative allows them to leave feeling inspired and motivate.

The final event that I am really looking forward to is Mother’s Day on March 22. I don’t underestimate that the definition of a mother is wide and ever-changing. Even if I am lucky enough to get a handmade card from my little guy Oakley, I hope I’ll be able to take some time to reflect not only on how far we women have come, but more importantly how far we can go in the future. It is certainly an exciting time for all of us.


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