Today we celebrate International Women’s Day. The day is being marked by a variety of events and online activities including a ‘google doodle’ and a popular YouTube campaign encouraging women to write a letter to their younger self, #DearMe, providing advice and encouragement to be who you are – confidence is key.
The first National Women’s Day was celebrated in the US in 1909 to commemorate the 1908 strike in New York by women garment workers protesting against working conditions. From its’ historical roots to today, International Women’s Day is about working women campaigning for change. Harriet Minter writing in today’s Guardian cautions those who believe we no longer need IWD:
“The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is “make it happen”. Yes, we’ve made things happen since 1909 but we haven’t achieved enough, there is still more to do. So let’s celebrate this IWD but let’s also remember, we’re a long way away from no longer needing it.’
This week the national jobs report showed lower unemployment but average hourly earnings only increasing by .01%. If you are in the workforce, this finding is not breaking news. Is the message here that you need to move to increase your income?
And for some workplace humor: ‘The Diary of the Left Shark’ by Kelly Stout in The New Yorker. You may remember the left shark from the Super Bowl halftime show. Here is his journal of events leading up to the performance and it’s aftermath. It’s an imagined story of workplace stress, sabotage and the resulting reevaluation of career direction. “Downloaded application to Columbia Teachers College. Think I could maybe make a difference in the lives of youth…Feeling O.K. about the future. Dance world maybe too toxic for a shark like me. Perhaps whole episode not humiliation but wake-up call! Considering move to Austin.”