WOW highlights #1: Laura Liswood + Kiran Bedi

Jude Kelly

Jude Kelly, our Artistic Director opening WOW. Photo: Belinda Lawley

Holding on to talent

Chaired by Denise Jagger, partner at Eversheds LLP. Panellists include GE Capital Direct Chairman Noel Harwerth; author and entrepreneur Christina Ioannidis; Associate Editor and columnist at The Sunday Times, Eleanor Mills; Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Google Mark Palmer-Edgecumbe; and Managing Director, Global Head of Diversity, Deutsche Bank AG Eileen Taylor and Secretary General of the Council of Women World Leaders Laura Liswood. Photo: Belinda Lawley

Holding on to talent was probably my favourite talk of the day. It was about the lack of women on boards at the top in so many industries. Most interesting point for me was that on boards, women look at the long term and impact on stakeholders and men look at short term and impact on shareholders. We need both. Also 85% of advertising is targeted at women but 85% of people at the top in advertising are men. We heard from Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Google Mark Palmer-Edgecumbe and they seem to have it sorted – for 20% of your time you get to work on a project that you’re personally interested in and they have free massage and yoga. Similar to this was Selling us short which I didn’t make it to but the audio is here. It was all about women in the advertising industry … or lack of.

Jude Kelly and Kiran Bedi

Jude Kelly and Kiran Bedi. Photo: Belinda Lawley

One woman’s leadership in transforming a male prison – a no-cost replicable model by Dr Kiran Bedi was wonderful. She has such a presence and is a really serene and gorgeous woman. I can’t imagine the things she had to see and do but when she’s explaining it she knew it was the right thing to do so she just did it! We’ve recorded her talk so you can get in on Soundcloud soon.

Laura Liswood

Laura Liswood

I went to hear Laura Liswood, co-founder and Secretary General of Council of Women World Leaders and Senior Advisor and Goldman Sachs talk about what it would take for there to be a woman President of the USA. I got so much out of it particularly about stereotypes of underrepresented groups in society and how these are engrained in us from fairytales to advertising. She interviewed 15 current and former presidents and prime ministers to identify what a world leader looks and acts like. She’s my new favourite woman!


Writing on the mirrors in lipstick about all the great characteristics of women. Photo: Belinda Lawley

Emeli Sande

Emeli Sande performing at Equals Live was a real treat and a great way to end the first day of WOW. She is such a strong and beautiful woman with a voice to die for! Photo: Linda Nylind