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WiFM appoints new chair

10 June 2009

Liz Kentish has taken over the Chair of BIFM's Women in FM (WiFM) special interest group (SIG) following the stepping down of Lynda Tilbury who chaired the group through to its formal recognition late last year.

The fast growing WIFM SIG has struck a seam of interest among female professionals, but also among a significant number of men.

The WiFM meeting on 3rd June welcomed its new chair, Liz Kentish to lead a membership that now tops 680. Kentish, a professional coach and trainer in the FM and built environment sector and the founder and director of Liz Kentish Coaching, aims to encourage more women to make FM a profession of choice.

The BIFM membership of 12,600 records just 24 precent as women. She aims to encourage more female role models at events, to enable women to make connections with other professionals and provide a programme of women friendly networking events that focus on topics of interest to them. She is also concerned that the FM sector is not seen as a career option at school for young people.

The meeting heard that "There are more women in influential positions than we think there are." It recognised that "Women network in a different way. Their approach is 'what can I do for you' rather than ' what you can do for me.'" It was also recognised that the growing number of male members of WiFM also respect this less formal networking approach.

The next WiFM event takes place on 24 June at Channel 4 in London, and the topic 'Aligning FM to the Diversity Agenda' promises some lively debate. Two guest speakers are the former MP Oona King, who is Channel 4's head of diversity and Maureen Moody, journalist and founder of Communicate with Care.
Liz Kentish can be contacted on coach@lizkentishcoaching.co.uk.


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