One year on – Claire Jarvis reflects on Women in Communications

Back in April 2020, IABC UK&I hosted our successful “Women in Communications” event, with five incredible speakers and over 50 guests discussing tips and practical advice on how to navigate a career in comms, with a particular focus on the challenges faced by women.

One year on, our speakers share their takeaways from the event, reflect on what has changed since then, and share an update on their work.


Claire Jarvis


Chair, Women Leaders in Communications

A former Communications Director for Siemens plc, Claire now runs her own business working as a communications consultant, team relationship coach and workplace mediator. She is passionate about women in leadership and the power of cognitive diversity to create competitive advantage. She chairs Women Leaders in Communications, an events-led network of senior women working in communications.


Claire’s Book recommendations

  • Why do so many Incompetent Men become Leaders? (and how to fix it), by Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic
  • Work like a Woman, by Mary Portas
  • Diversify, by June Sarpong
  • Rebel Ideas, by Matthew Syed
  • Corporate Rebels – Make Work More Fun, by Joost Minnaar and Pim de Morree


Key takeaways from IABC UK&I Women in Communications 2020 event

  1. Imposter syndrome is very common in women – that fear of others finding out you’re not as competent as they perceive you to be. This isn’t surprising when many women report experiencing negative attitudes from both men and other women in the workplace. Have faith in your abilities and find ways of managing any negative mind talk about your skills and capabilities – perhaps by working with a coach. You will be amazed what you’re capable of if you allow yourself to step up and out of your comfort zone!
  2. My career at Siemens lasted 16 years and I loved every minute of it, but finding another similar job in my late 40s proved hard and I have ended up retraining to take my career in a different direction. That is no bad thing and, in fact, I would thoroughly recommend reinventing yourself when the time is right!  However, if you are keen to stay in a communications role, make sure you’re known to recruiters and head-hunters long before you need them. And remember, recruiters work for their clients, not for you, so you need to be a standout candidate who will impress them and their clients, both on paper and in person.
  3. Linked to the above, do invest time building a network outside of your company and, while it’s valuable to talk to peers, don’t just network with communications people in other organisations. LinkedIn is a very important tool to build your reputation as an industry leader. Don’t just be on it, but like, share and post your own articles to get yourself noticed and known.


Our event Women in Communication – Pathways to Success was held in April 2020 and was free  for IABC UK & Ireland members. Interested in becoming a member to join more events like this? Visit our website at to join today. Use the code IABC20 at checkout when you join or renew through 18 April 2021 and you’ll receive a 20% discount on international dues.

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