The Great British Businesswoman Series interviews Chieu Cao - CEO & Founder of Mintago, Co-founder of Perkbox,  financial wellbeing advocate, and Great British Businesswoman judge

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As we prepare for this year’s Great British Businesswoman Awards we’ve set up a great panel of judges to help us select the winners - based on their experience, and mission to celebrate the best women in business. 

The Great British Businesswoman Awards brings together and celebrates the women who are changing the face of business across the United Kingdom. In particular, our Male Advocate category shines a spotlight on those men who are getting on board to make changes for women in industry - by leading by example, changing the narrative, and paving the way for the next generation of businesswomen - and Chieu is a perfect example of this. 

Having judges like Chieu on board allows us to celebrate and shine a spotlight on some of the best businesswomen in a number of industries.

We caught up with Chieu to get his take on the awards show, why this subject is important, and what he is doing to create more diversity in the workplace. 

Throughout your career so far, have you noticed any significant changes in regards to women in business and the development of this topic?

“I have definitely noticed that there are now more women in business, especially in entrepreneurship. Not only is it great to see more female leaders, but also it’s amazing to see these changes after years of male-dominated industries. The business landscape has changed and continues to change with more women playing a role in shaping the future of business. 

“Despite the amazing progress we have made, there is still much more work to be done to support women as they still face more funding challenges, representation, and gender pay gap is still an issue.”

What does it mean for you to be a part of this awards programme, and what made you want to be a judge?

“Being a part of this awards programme means being a part of change, of inspiration. I wanted to be a judge as I believe that women play a crucial role in business and in our future. 

“Due to my experience both in corporate and as an entrepreneur I have seen how the landscape has changed and want to not only continue to be a part of the community who inspires female leaders, but also who celebrates them. 

“I’m an advisor, investor and board member of several female-founded and led businesses. There are specific challenges that I’ve seen some female leaders face, and they need to be understood and addressed.”

Why do you believe it is important to continue to celebrate women in this way? And why would you encourage people to enter this awards programme?

“As a society, I believe in fair representation. Like men, women too need representation in business. This is so that younger generations can see first-hand what is possible, and what can be achieved. Celebrating women who are breaking the glass ceiling is crucial.

“Inspiring future generations means inspiring the next CEO, engineer, and entrepreneurs - and no gender should define these roles.”

What do you hope, and predict for the future of women in business, in both your industry and others?

“I hope to always see more women in leadership roles, changing their industries for the better. There certainly is a global movement to make more and more women join STEM careers and I hope to see a more diverse industry in the near future. Steps have been taken, but more work must be done to support this. This also creates diversity in the business world which impacts society. We want a society where the very best minds are represented, without any gender or other differences as a filter.”

As well as the future of women in business, we’d love to hear a bit more about what you’re doing at the moment and how you’re supporting diversity in your own workplace?

“As an employer, I seek to make our team as diverse and balanced as possible, with an equal percentage of women in senior management positions. This translates into recruitment, whereby if we had two candidates with the same experience, we would seek to offer it to a woman if that was an option.”

Lastly, If you had one piece of advice for businesses on how to advocate for women in their workplace what would it be?

“I believe this piece of advice works for anyone, but can be applied to women in particular:

If you are an employer or a leader in your industry, make sure to nurture and mentor the talented individuals that surround you.

”You will be surprised by what a bit of support can do and it creates a cycle of paying it forward. Moreover, if you see challenges in perception and culture against women, it is your responsibility to fix it and establish the right behaviours.”

Are you a Male Advocate fighting for the equality of women in the workplace? Enter the Great British Businesswoman Awards here so we can celebrate you!