Effie Bersoux, Growth Marketer, founded GrowthGirls in 2019 after working in the marketing industry for about ten years. GrowthGirls is a growth marketing agency that operates in Europe and America and advocates women’s professional empowerment, without excluding men from human resources and her clientele.
In a discussion about the challenges facing female professionals today and ways to empower them, GrowthGirls’ founder explains, “Until society changes, I built my own company, my own micro-society.”
We’d like to know more about GrowthGirls. Why did you choose to focus on women’s empowerment in the workplace?
Our company name directly reflects our orientation. Although the company targets women, it is not limited to them. I worked in marketing for about ten years before founding GrowthGirls. It occurred to me during this course that I might start my own business. While I was considering taking this step, I noticed that very few female decision-makers were at the meeting tables and, those who were, faced numerous obstacles.
As a result, I realized that one good manager is not enough to change things in a company. Change must occur at the level of society; however, this takes time. Yet, plenty of developments were taking place, and I wanted to move forward. I wanted to pave my way. Because I cannot wait for society to change, I built my own company, my own micro-society, and we strive to ensure that every man who’s a member of our company, whether he is a member of our staff, a customer, or an external partner, understands and embraces our values.
For example, the company provides paid menstrual leave for female employees. There is a discussion about when this license will be instituted at the state level. But, since I am an employer, I am in a position to make decisions. It is not for me to force women to spend their vacation days on something that is intrinsic to their female nature; I have decided to do this for my own staff. In my own company, I decided that I would offer this benefit, and the results have been excellent.
What can be done to strengthen the professional position of women?
We need to focus on what we can do to support women. In GrowthGirls, for example, I ensure that salaries are equal for men and women. I also interview each applicant personally. It is every person’s responsibility to empower women, and when women are empowered, they can make a difference in the world.
What challenges do women face today in their careers?
Several weeks ago, I attended an event with an international audience and female speakers from the investment world. Instead of being asked questions about their subject, they were asked about their philosophy of life, such as whether, for example, they would correct injustices suffered by other women, whether they balance their professional and personal lives, what it took to get them where they are now, and how they gained the trust of others in their business. In the case of a man, such questions would not be asked.
The burden of answering all questions falls on women in positions of responsibility, and we ask too much of them. It is believed that one woman will bring change and change the system. The belief that women must be perfect in all aspects makes their position more difficult. They are trapped, they are afraid of making mistakes, they are afraid they will be judged harshly.
As a result, they themselves are concerned about whether they can fulfill the role that others assign to them. Their perception is that they are responsible for everything. They are carrying a heavy weight, fearing they cannot meet the standard. There is no need to lock anyone into a particular pattern or role. Women are entitled to make mistakes and have their own personalities.
Find the original article in Greek here