Firstplan is delighted to be recognised in Planning Resource this week as the planning consultancy with the second highest proportion of Chartered Female Planners in the country. The article states that:
‘The firm with the second-highest proportion of female chartered planners is Firstplan, where 53 per cent are women, as are 40 per cent of its directors. Like Emery Planning, this appears to be a result of the company’s culture rather than any formal approach. “It hasn’t been a policy of the company to get a gender balance,” says director Michael Woolner. “It’s just sort of happened subconsciously. The key criterion for staff is talent.
It may not be deliberate, but Woolner believes that having a good gender balance does help create a more “harmonious” and family-friendly working environment. He dismisses the argument, once common among some business leaders, that women employees taking maternity leave causes disruption. Rather, he says, when associate – or director-level female staff take maternity leave, it provides an opportunity for more junior members of the team to step up and gain experience. Woolner also believes that, as a relatively small company, Firstplan is able be flexible in terms of employees’ working hours in a way that may not be possible at large corporates’.
Planning Resource’s research shows that of the 25 biggest firms surveyed, just 23 per cent of planning directors are female and that the overall proportion of female planners is just 36 per cent. Set against this shortfall in representation across the sector, Firstplan is particularly proud to have a good gender balance throughout all levels of our team. Firstplan recognise that the success of our company is down to attracting and retaining talented planners. Offering flexibility has been key to this with many of our planners, both male and female, having been with our firm for many years.
Head over to our full team page to meet our full team of planners and support staff – www.firstplan.co.uk/team