March 8 is International Women’s Day - a global event celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The theme for 2019, #BalanceforBetter, recognizes the need to think equal, build smart and innovate for change.
What does #BalanceforBetter mean to Freedom 55 Financial? We asked Freedom 55 Financial's Vice-President Abbie MacMillan.
"There’s an undeniable strength in having diversity in the workplace,” says MacMillan. “We recognize that everyone brings a different perspective to our organization and we’re striving to see greater diversity reflected in our workforce, so we can better meet the unique needs of our clients.”
Since beginning her career as a disability insurance specialist with Freedom 55 Financial's parent company, Great-West Life, 27 years ago, MacMillan has worked with numerous teams and leaders throughout the organization. She has been an active participant in the movement towards gender balance in the workplace.
MacMillan has taken on a variety of roles, stepping into her new position as vice-president in May 2017. She particularly recognizes the value women bring to the industry.
“Over the course of my career, I’ve seen women start to progress towards more senior leadership positions in financial services. Women bring a different perspective to the workplace and it’s having a positive impact on our industry. When I first started out, there were only a few women in the business, but each year we’re seeing more and more women in leadership positions-and there’s room for more.”
Advice for women entering the financial services industry
This industry is both rewarding and challenging. To achieve a gender-balanced workplace, women need to take the first step and not be hesitant to enter the field.
When asked about advice for those considering a career in the financial services industry, MacMillan says women should see the potential.
"Don’t think of it as a male-dominated industry, think of it as an industry rich in opportunity,” MacMillan says. “You can’t second guess yourself or let your own fear hold you back from reaching your potential. Keep an open mind, be willing to take on new challenges and, most importantly, be confident in yourself because you know your own strengths.”
If you’re interested in learning more about joining Freedom 55 Financial, check out our career page.
And, consider how you can think equal, build smart and innovate for change this International Women’s Day and beyond.
The information provided is based on current laws, regulations and other rules applicable to Canadian residents. It is accurate to the best of our knowledge as of the date of publication. Rules and their interpretation may change, affecting the accuracy of the information. The information provided is general in nature, and should not be relied upon as a substitute for advice in any specific situation. For specific situations, advice should be obtained from the appropriate legal, accounting, tax or other professional advisors.