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International Women’s Day – A message from Paul Zimmerman, Invotra Group’s Chief Operations Officer

On International Women’s Day, I thought I’d share how some women have helped me, be it personally or professionally. Without these women in my life, I’d be a very different person: maybe more insular and narrow, less likely to be open, warm and possibly empathetic. Whether at home or work, my life is richer for having lived with or worked with these women.

I’m very lucky in my family life, in that I’m surrounded by great women. I really love it because each and every day I get a different view of the world. My wife Rebecca works at the largest secondary school in Surrey. She leads the front office and is the PA to the Headteacher. They have an incredible and varied workload to deal with constantly, and she does this with aplomb. She’s the mother to my two incredibly talented daughters, Ella, who’s halfway through her law degree at Warwick University and has just received a summer vacation scheme placement at Slaughter & May in London for June, and Lily, who’s begun studying sport sciences at Loughborough University and just smashed her biochem test the other day. When I was growing up, my mom – a genealogist- read to me and my sister all the time. She imbued in us a strong intellectual curiosity, and in my case, encouraged my interest in history. My mother-in-law, who was one of the first women to be ordained in the Church of England, though now retired, works constantly to look after the needs of others and helps them find, rediscover or reinforce their faith in God.

At Invotra we work hard to encourage a meritocratic company. It doesn’t matter who you are or how old you are, where you come from or what your background is. None of this matters when considering whether or not you’re right for a role. Alison Galvin, one of our co-founders and group board directors, helps drive this as Chief People Officer. In this environment, it should come as no surprise that 50% of our team are women. And yet, even in 2022, this is uncommon in tech companies. Here’s to some of the fabulous women at Invotra, Kim Casey, Rachael Alderlieste, MSc, Lisa Parker, Erica Mellett, Keri Harrowven & Leila Dewhurst to name just a few, as well as ex-director Sinead Hunt.

Beyond Invotra, I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have worked with a number of brilliant and inspirational women. Here’s just a few:

Wendy Snowdon, Helen Marquis, Maria Murphy, Gaby Vinader, Claude Borna, Tessa Caulfield-Kerney, Rebecca Loades, Kathryn Roberts, Isabelle Wies Griffith & Tamsin Todd.

It’s been an absolute privilege and honour to work with these women in tech. I have learned so much from them and laughed through the years with all of them.

Diversity makes us better and stronger. With diverse teams, we are more likely to view the world as it really is, not necessarily the way our often blinkered perspective shows us.

Every day – not just #IWD – let’s celebrate the huge impact women make in our home lives, our family lives and our work lives.

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