(Scroll to the end of this post for your 🤖Bonus Pro tip!)

⍰ What do we know women do in the coworking industry?

✅ Most of the podcasts in the coworking industry are hosted by women

✅ Most of the books in the coworking industry are written or co-authored by women

✅ Every week women are writing about coworking in our industry publications

✅ Most of the online coworking courses are created and hosted by women

✅ Women create and host the majority of online membership communities

✅ Women run A LOT of coworking spaces

✅ Women have founded and own A LOT of coworking spaces

🤦🏻‍♂️ Yet when we get to the opening keynote speakers and panels at a conference it’s just men EVERYWHERE!

This post is about “representation” at conferences, rather than “diversity”, so please consider that as you read.

⍰ Does the data below represent the coworking industry in Europe?

⚠️ One 2023 conference which has:

60 people speaking

-38 Men

-22 women

-ONE male person of colour

⚠️ Another 2023 conference has

-10 people speaking in one day

-6 men

-4 women

-ONE male person of colour

⚠️ Another previous conference

-20 White Men

-5 White Women (2 of those women were hosting the event!)

-0 people of colour

⛔️ The under-representation in 2023 is devastating.

✅ My call to action for my fellow males

If you’re a man, and you get asked to speak at a conference, question and ask about the diversity of the panel.

If you are not helping to create a diverse panel, please decline.

This is a super easy step that we as men can take to help ensure gender representation.

We also need to consider race, gender, accessibility and differently abled.

If you think you have tackled “diversity” and someone still needs to ask you about it, you’ve missed something.

In my career, I have organized more than a thousand events, workshops, and meetups. I often felt that my choice of speakers and topics was exceptional.🤣

However, I have often found it necessary to reevaluate my decisions in order to place greater emphasis on inclusion, diversity, accessibility, and equity.

And even now I still have blind spots in these areas that I need to have spelt out to me.

🤖Bonus Pro tip!

🤖Put this prompt into #ChatGPT and see what the answer is:

“Why are there always more male than female speakers at coworking conferences?”