Supporting forest industry women in their leadership journey

“A fantastic opportunity! I encourage more participation from industry”

This is the feedback from one of the participants in the I-LEAD Women in Industry Program, recently completed by eight women currently working in the Tasmanian forest industry.

A gender diverse workforce is widely acknowledged as contributing to increased productivity, efficiency, profitability and resilience due to a diversity of perspectives and opinions. By supporting and appealing to women, the forestry industry has a greater pool of talent available as a potential current and future workforce.

I-LEAD participant Melanie Conomikes with Network Convenor Therese Taylor

The Tasmanian Government supported TFFPN to provide scholarships for 11 women working in the Tasmanian forest industry to increase their governance and leadership skills. Two opportunities for leadership and governance upskilling were identified for this project –

  1. AICD Foundations of Directorship Online – 3 scholarships and
  2. Tasmanian Leaders I-LEAD Program – 8 scholarships.

Both programs are highly regarded and provide significant opportunities for participants to not only develop skills but to build their networks.

Designed just for women, the I-LEAD Women in Industry Program aimed to help tackle the under-representation of women in leadership positions and explore opportunities for career success across large and small enterprises. The participants were complimentary in their feedback of this program with one participant highlighting that the most valuable aspect of I-LEAD was “Connecting with industry leaders, adaptive management techniques and learning more about my personal work and leadership style.” Another noted the “networking connections and peer reflection” were highlights.

The AICD Foundations of Directorship Online Course, is a structured 11-week program that combines virtual classroom sessions, online learning activities and individual study with support from a team of experienced faculty members and a dedicated Learning Support Executive. The women who participated in this program agreed they were more prepared to participate in a governance role.  “It was a great introductory course that was able to be managed in an around other work commitments whilst at the same time delivering great value,” said one participant.

The Tasmanian Forests and Forest Products Network thanks the Tasmanian Government for providing funding support to this scholarship program and the Tasmanian Leaders Program for developing and delivering a bespoke Women in Industry I-LEAD Program.

Expressions of interest are currently open for an I-LEAD Women in Industry Program to be delivered in late 2023. At this stage, scholarships are not available, but women who may be interested can express their interest at I-LEAD – Tasmanian Leaders Inc.

The full report on the program can be found HERE with a list of participants and their feedback.