Founded in 1999, everywoman is a membership organisation fronted by Dame Mary Perkins, co-founder of Specsavers, and committed to showcasing the career opportunities available to women in the retail industry.
With an estimated 80% of all consumer-purchasing decisions made by women, everywoman deems it essential that this demographic is represented within retail organisations at the senior level in order to ensure that the needs of their customers are met. And their feelings are clearly shared as they have earned the support of a number of forward-thinking businesses who are eager to champion diversity at all levels, including the British Retail Consortium, Kingfisher plc., Pentland Group plc, GVC, Worldpay UK, Santander, Asda, Salesforce, DFS and SSE.
Dame Mary Perkins said: “The role of women in retail has never been more pivotal than it is today. Through their hard work and dedication, women in the industry have forged a path into some of the most influential roles in their sector, whether that is on the shop floor or in the most senior positions, and the results speak for themselves.
As part of the programme’s efforts to advance women in business, each year a panel of everywoman judges gather to select twelve Specsavers everywoman in Retail Ambassadors, with the aim to uncover success stories and raise the profile of role models so that others might find inspiration and go on to achieve their full potential.
This year’s selection has been announced and among the elect is Jill Flood from Sussex. She is the Senior Brand Manager of Superdrug (A.S. Watson) and has gained particular recognition for the key role she has played in positioning Superdrug at the forefront of the vlogging trend, elevating the company’s profile across the UK.
Originally attracted to Superdrug by its entrepreneurial philosophy, during her time there Jill has introduced a number of innovative initiatives to engage with customers. Most notably, through her conviction and passion, Jill was able to persuade the board to see the wisdom of engaging with Zoe Sugg (Zoella), a celebrity blogger and teen-favourite. Having secured her manager’s buy-in for a new ‘Zoella’ beauty range, Jill set about planning the launch, capitalising on social media to raise awareness.
All expectations were exceeded with the Zoella range giving sales such a boost that they even affected the bottom line figure and helped Superdrug reach its year-end targets. The project evolved rapidly as store managers and colleagues became highly engaged and the Zoella range was then rolled out across all UK stores.
Jill’s foresight, initiative and talent for identifying what the company’s key demographic would engage with make her a wonderful role model for other women in retail, who will hopefully now feel inspired to take some risks and go that extra mile.