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International Women’s Day – why we’ve always been proud supporters

International Women’s Day takes place annually on 8th March and celebrates the achievements of women in all walks of life. It has its origins in New York, and began back in 1908 with a demand for the right to vote. Today it takes many forms and is supported by governments, academic institutions and forward-thinking organisations around the world.

For many years, financial services could rightly be accused of being a very male-dominated industry, and in some quarters the pace of change has been painfully slow. Why is that? We feel it is because too many financial service companies accent product sales over client relationships. Thus, what ought to be a role that accentuates qualities such as empathy and communication becomes a number-orientated one. Too many companies, rather than embracing the flexible working and freedom that advice roles can bring, want to see five-day per week presence to drive people to targets.

We hope our culture of freedom continues to attract more female advisers to PWM. Today though, we celebrate that our conscious choice not to hire based on image has brought us a balanced leadership team, with women heading half our departments. Unquestionably this enriches our skill sets, rounds our decision-making process and frankly has helped us build a far better business.

Fiona Oliver – Business Director

Fiona holds the distinction of being our first non-adviser Board Partner, and heads our team of 35 advisers. In just over two years, her dynamism and drive has resulted in growth rising by nearly 40%, a truly impressive performance.

Claire Reeve – Head of Finance

Claire is taking our financial management to new levels of sophistication, spearheading the drive to transform our business reporting, building robust Sage-driven systems that will replace our reliance on Excel.

Toto James – Head of Marketing

Effective and innovative marketing strategy is central to our business development programme, and Toto is making transformative progress in updating and revitalising our website, and is vigorously promoting our recently-updated brand profile.

Hilary Schofield – Partner

Hilary has the accolade of being named as a ‘Power Returner’ in the 2019 Timewise Power 50 Awards, a roll call of 50 powerful executives who work part-time or flexibly. Following a successful career in the food manufacturing sector, through dedication and hard work Hilary rapidly achieved Fellowship of the Chartered Insurance Institute. She is also a Fellow of the Personal Finance Society.

Rebecca Rider – Adviser

Rebecca heads our equity release mortgage team. She brings a wealth of mortgage and financial services experience and knowledge to our business gained during more than 20 years in the sector. She currently holds the Diploma in Financial Services and is working towards Chartered status.

We have always recognised and supported the needs of women who are seeking to further their careers in the financial services sector, and look forward to welcoming two more female advisers into our team in May.