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Women of the Square Mile 2019: What Not to Miss

May 10, 2019 | Daisy Bernard


Women of the Square Mile is back on 15th May for another year of cutting-edge conversation, skill-building workshops and unmissable networking opportunities.

With 60+ speakers, six tracks and 600+ attendees, industry leaders and like-minded individuals will gather at Olympia London to drive change in the Finance sector. From tackling imposter syndrome to robots taking over jobs, we round up highlights from this year's event.

Opening Address

Who: Professor Heather McGregor, Executive Dean, Edinburgh Business School @ Heriot-Watt University 

Where: Main Plenary, 9:00

What: We're delighted to have Professor Heather McGregor kicking off the day. Formerly Miss Moneypenny of the Financial Times, she's currently Executive Dean at the Edinburgh Business School and the principal shareholder and non-executive chairman of the executive search firm Taylor Bennet. She's also the founder of the Taylor Bennett Foundation, which works to promote diversity in the communications industry. In addition, she is a non-executive director of two public companies. In June 2015, Professor McGregor was made a CBE for her services to diversity and employment. In February 2017, she was appointed by the UK Government to be a member of the Honours Committee for the Economy.


Promoting Diversity and Strengthening Retention

Who: Dame Jayne-Anne Gadhia CBE BA, FCA, FCIBS, FRSE, Former CEO @ Virgin Money

Where: Main Plenary, 12:40

What: The case is clear  diverse thinking in an inclusive environment makes for a successful business. But how can it be done? Dame Jayne-Anne Gadhia shares her practical strategies for improving retention through inclusivity. 


Inside the Discrimination Mind

Who: Nuala Walsh, Founder @ MindEquity, Vice-Chair @ UN Women UK

Where: Main Plenary, 14:45

What: When identifying discrimination, it's important to consider why and how the incident took place. From a behavioural science perspective, Nuala Walsh will outline triggers and root causes of gender discrimination and inequality, providing less-popularised explanations. In the session, she will suggest behaviourally-informed intervention solutions that can be adopted in the industry. 


Motivating Millenials

Who: Dawn Miller, SVP, Head of Middle Market / SME, Industry Practices & Distribution, Continental Europe @ Chubb, and Joshua Bright, Co-Founder @ Capital Moments

Where: Main Plenary, 16:20

What: Millenials, Baby-Boomers, Gen-Z — it's all too easy to put professionals into generic boxes. But when organisations start digging into the differences that exist among generations, they often overlook vital similarities. While generational differences certainly exist, we share common behavioural traits as humans, most notably yearning for success. Join Dawn Miller and Joshua Bright to discover how to align your company culture with deep, human motivations  — across generations  — to create a successful workforce. 


How Diversity Transforms Finance 4.0

Who: Wincie Wong, Head of Innovation for Supply Chain Services @ RBS

Where: Track 1: Finance 4.0, 12:40

What: If companies are to adapt and thrive with the current world, diversity is essential. Using her personal journey, Wincie Wong will talk us through her journey into tech and innovation, founding Natwest's Girls Can Code network and the industry-wide Tech She Can charter, critical to changing the ratio for the next generation. 

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Is a Robot Really Going to Take My Job?

Who: Di Rifai, Chairman @ Creating Future Us

Where: Track 1: Finance 4.0, 12:05

What: According to The World Economic Forum, advances in technology mean over 7 million jobs are at risk over the next five years. Di Rifai will explain how automation can enhance and replace current practices, predicting the shifts and impacts that might take place. 


Panel: Pride & Prejudice: Being an Ally

Who: Peter Wharton-Hood, Global Chief Operating Officer, Global Transaction Bank @ Deutsche Bank | Mark Freed, CEO @ E2W | Saadia Mujeeb, Global Head of Risk - Hedge Funds, Asset Managers, PB, CCPs @ Natwest Markets | Pips Bunce, Director / Head of Global Markets Technology Core Engineering Integration Components @ Credit Suisse

Where: Track 2: Tackling the Biased Mind, 12:05

What: Research suggests that when men partake in gender inclusion programs, 96% of organisations see progress. But many men  aware they could be part of the problem  often feel powerless and unsure of how to help. Enter the concept of allyship, a way for men to help step up and challenge gender discrimination at work. In this panel, speakers will discuss the need for allyship in business and provide guidance on how it can be implemented successfully


Change on the Horizon

Who: Gurpreet Manku, Assistant Director General and Director of Policy @ British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association

Where: Track 3: What's in HER Wallet, 11:30

What: There might still be a long way to go for women in private equity and venture capital, but Gurpreet Manku is optimistic. Using case studies of successful, ambitious and innovative females, she will anticipate the industry's future and offer solutions on how individuals and organisations can shape this. 


You are Not an Imposter!

Who: Mariza Fotiou, Digital COO @ HSBC Private Banking

Where: Workshop 1: Bank on Yourself, 14:10

What: According to a study by psychologist Gail Matthews, 70% of us have suffered from imposter syndrome at some point in life. It's something Mariza Fotiou has experienced, and something she learned to overcome. In this workshop, she will share her tips of getting to the root of imposter syndrome and how to tackle fraudulent feelings head-on. 


Channel Your Productivity Badass - Using the 888 Formula to Redefine Time

Who: Abigail Barnes, Founder and CEO @ Success by Design Training

Where: Workshop 2: Business Success

What: Financial organisations are challenged by managing expectations and demands of all their stakeholders in a constantly changing environment. But when juggling multiple projects at once,  productivity can take a hit. This workshop, led by Abigail Barnes, will give guidance on how to slow down and harness your maximum potential. 


Women of the Square Mile kicks off on 15th May, 2019 at Olympia London. With limited tickets left, secure your place now to avoid disappointment.