Breaking Bias, Building Bridges

After spending the first part of my writing and editing career in male-dominated industries, it was refreshing to join Dragonfly Editorial — as a woman-owned company, I feel like my voice is heard and my colleagues and peers consistently support me.

However, the editorial world at large isn’t immune to the pervasive influence of gender bias. Despite the industry’s commitment to words and ideas, women writers and editors may still find themselves facing unique challenges in a domain where gender stereotypes and biases can shape publishing decisions and career trajectories.

In honor of International Women’s Day, the following are just some ways in which we can empower women in the workplace.

Provide mentorship and guidance

Offering advice, sharing experiences, and providing constructive feedback helps aspiring writers and editors navigate the complexities of the industry and any biases they may face along the way. Professionals who are early in their careers or facing specific challenges benefit from having a trusted advisor to go to for guidance and support.

In 2010, I found myself living and working in Dublin, Ireland. I was in a strange city, far from home, but I never felt lost because of the incredible women who mentored me in my personal and professional endeavors. I joined the American Women’s Club of Dublin and the president of the club became like another mother to me, inviting me over often to introduce me to other women or to simply catch up and make sure I was doing okay. At work, my direct boss guided me, encouraged me, and trusted me to handle important initiatives. She taught me so many lessons and always maintained an open-door policy.

Network and collaborate

Building strong professional networks and fostering collaboration among female writers and editors creates space for women to connect about opportunities and learn from each other.

Every year I attend editorial conferences, and I enjoy seeing the same (and new) faces and hearing what my peers are up to. It often feels like no time has passed when I see my writing and editing buddies the next year. We’ll go for coffee during session breaks or out to dinner after a long day of learning and networking. When a project comes our way that doesn’t land in our scope of work, we refer one another. When I need inspiration or someone to talk to about struggles in our editorial world, I know they’ll offer good advice and support.

Amplify voices

We must amplify the voices of our female colleagues and peers by promoting their work, sharing their achievements, and highlighting their contributions to the editorial world. I like to do this by liking or resharing posts on LinkedIn or by shouting out the achievements of others in my field. At work, I don’t hesitate to announce the editorial achievements of my colleagues and, when I can, I make referrals and meet with other women looking for career opportunities.

Advocate for gender equality

It’s no secret that women face a tougher career journey thanks to the gender pay gap and workplace discrimination. Speaking out against gender bias and discrimination, advocating for policies and practices that promote diversity and inclusion, and supporting initiatives that aim to empower women in the industry are great first steps toward progress. 

Whether by standing up when you see injustices happen or actively pushing for diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives at your workplace, positive change only happens when we take the goals of dedicating a month to women and see progress continue throughout the year.

March is Women’s History Month, and I can’t think of a better way for all of us to celebrate than by acknowledging, appreciating, and celebrating the achievements and successes of the women in our lives. Specifically, for me, I’m proud to work alongside such a talented and diverse group of individuals here at Dragonfly Editorial.

A person wears a white shirt that says: Friends. Mothers. Daughters. Visionaries. Queens. Rulers. Women. Women is in red text and has a tiny heart next to it instead of a period.


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