Kate Farrow is everywoman’s Director of Training, a role which keeps her busy curating our eclectic schedule of webinars, managing relationships with our corporate partners, and continuously making improvements to the everywomanNetwork for the benefit of our 30,000 members around the world.
1. What are you looking at right now?
A shelf of workout DVDs. In the last year the only time they’ve moved is when I needed to dust the shelf.
2. Based on what you actually do, honestly, what should your job title be?
Director of Mischief! It was something my Nana always called me when I was little because I was often up to no good. My work literally crosses over into every team here at everywoman. I’m involved in sales, content, account management, training, technology, events, finances... And I like to try to bring a bit of fun to it all...
3. What’s your superpower: the one skill that makes you so successful at your job?
That would have to be relationship building skills, but more specifically my ability to listen to what isn’t being said. Things are changing quite a lot now, but up until just a couple of years ago, a lot of organisations were very wary about having conversations about gender balance in their workforce. As well as tuning into what they were saying about their challenges and concerns, I was always mindful of what they might not feel comfortable sharing with me. There was one meeting where the leader was almost apologetic – the organisation felt that it was ‘late to the party’. We were then able to have a conversation about how it was a great time to get going because all the early adopters had made their mistakes and we could learn from them.
4. What’s your Achilles heel?
Procrastination, unless I can see a clear vision, I struggle to get started.
5. What’s on your to-do list right now that you’re putting off?
Apart from cleaning my windows and getting fit (not at the same time), I’d say that I’m currently in something of a ‘flow’ state, where I’m creating new things, getting some old and new ideas off the ground to benefit our community. Which is great, but typically means that essential life admin gets pushed out the way.
6. Introvert or extravert?
Ambivert! That’s according to the quiz on The Quiet Revolution website. I can definitely be shy with strangers, but I can also stand up in a room full of people and deliver training sessions. I can be quiet, but also forthright with my opinions and feelings.
7. Which one person has had the most profound impact on your career?
It’s very difficult to name just one; I have been lucky to have had a huge number of gifted and generous people help me navigate my career. If I had to choose, it would be Karen Gill, Co-Founder of everywoman. She made me see that when I create something new for a client, it’s never just about the immediate opportunity, it’s always about the longer-term potential. That’s enabled me to grow in so many other aspects, being able to take that helicopter view of an activity rather than just the activity itself.
8. What book, film or piece of music sums up your outlook on life?
Equalizer, Denzel Washington style. At the heart of my role is a commitment to closing the gender gap and making women’s position stronger so this perfectly sums it up.
9. Who would be at your fantasy dinner party?
Professor Brené Brown, TED Talk speaker about the importance of vulnerability and author of Rising Strong. Jillian Michaels, fitness guru and all-round amazing female role model. She doesn’t mollycoddle anyone, she helps you hold a mirror up and make you face the truth about your fitness/lack of fitness. Stephen Covey, Leadership guru still widely quoted today. Professor Michael Watkins, inventor of the Seven Seismic Shifts, an amazing model of how managers can shift to leaders. John Amaechi, ex NBA star and now inclusion consultant, ultra-creative in his anecdotes to help people ‘get’ inclusion. Kim Scott, author of Radical Candor, a practical book about having tough conversations. My Nana, my role model in being mischievous!
10. Early bird or night owl?
This is an interesting one. So, before Covid-19, when I was exclusively office based, I’d have said night owl. At 3pm I would always get a slump, then at 6pm it would lift and I’d feel like my battery had been plugged in. But since I’ve been working remotely, I haven’t experienced that 3pm slump at all. I’m wondering if my home environment is better supporting my energy levels. I think perhaps I’m consciously setting better boundaries at home, not getting distracted by all the inevitable goings on in offices. So right now, I’d say I’m a bit of both!
11. What has been your best ever day at work?
The first time a client asked me to give a presentation about my career journey for their International Women’s Day celebrations. Firstly, I was blown away to even be asked, but then having people come up to me after the session and tell me they were inspired was just amazing. My brain couldn’t handle it!
12. When have you been at your least confident?
Between leaving my previous employer and joining everywoman I took a year out. I lost so much confidence in that time because there wasn’t a constant stretch. Although I look back and regret taking that time out, it meant I found out what I was supposed to be doing all along.
13. What was your ‘Plan B’ career?
I wanted to be a vet when I was younger and I still have a love of animals, so it would be something along those lines. Maybe zookeeper of mischievous pandas?
Chat with Kate in our regular everywomanCoffeeBreaks. These free, open-to-all, virtual sessions last 30-45 minutes and explore topics such as productivity, remote working, and future outcomes of the Covid-19 crisis. Join in the chat or just sit back and enjoy the conversation.