No More Boys and Girls – video link to first episode

This BBC programme was one of the most fascinating I watched last year, and was repeated recently. No More Boys and Girls is a documentary looking at how gendered the education of young children is and how important relatively small changes can be in creating a gender equal world. I interviewed one of the principal participants, teacher Graham Andre, which you can read here. I really admire how open he was to the criticism, his willingness to change, and how much work he has done to promote gender equality since making the documentary. One particularly interesting facet of the programme is that even at age 7 girls were underestimating their abilities and boys were overestimating theirs.

The two episodes are now available to view on line and I urge you to have a look, particularly if you have an influence on young children in any way. Share it with any teachers you know, share it with everyone and anyone! Simply click on the picture above.

If the link doesn’t open for you try this.

The Story of RenewYou (and how to become a specialist)

My flagship course is RenewYou and it’s probably the the thing of which I am most proud (excluding my two wonderful kids, naturally). I wrote it sat at my kitchen table, and initially we just had a few handouts of the exercises, the 300 page journal came later. In brief, it’s a one day personal development course for women that makes them feel better about themselves, more confident, more focused, more empowered. I wrote it to deliver myself, and never thought I’d end up licensing over 80 women to run it. I wanted a course that would give women a boost, that was about them and every facet of their lives: career, home, passions, and that would leave them feeling that they could do whatever they wanted, that they had choices, and with a plan would help them get there. I also wanted it to feel ‘safe’ not to be another voice telling women what they should and shouldn’t do. Simply a day to explore, reflect, plan, and uncover their talents in a supportive environment with other women.

RenewYou Participants, South Africa

My work in various organisations had convinced me that there was a need for a one day personal development course for women. Longer programmes exist (and are great) but often companies would not, or could not, release staff for them. Women sometimes were reluctant to apply for them and to make a longer time commitment. My interest was in getting to that pool of untapped talent and imbuing them with enough confidence and zizzle to be the best they ever wanted to be, whatever that was. And, to be totally honest, I wanted a course that companies would book, or release staff to attend. It was just one facet of the various things I offered.

However, RenewYou had other ideas. It took on a life of its own. The women loved it. It had a life enhancing effect and I was getting feedback saying “This course has changed my life“. I have found myself in tears at the end of the course with some of the amazing stories that the women shared. Managers were telling me that they could see a difference in the women who came back from the course. The evaluations were fabulous. I loved delivering it. I realised it wasn’t just a temporary fix, but had lasting effects on most of the women who did it.

Somehow the word spread and trainers began approaching me asking me if they could deliver it, too. I alway said no. I could not envisage a business model that sat comfortably with me and allowed me to be my authentic self, while not exploiting trainers themselves and involving me in moving away from my own face to face contact with women.

However, a few years back a young African woman asked me if she could deliver it in Africa. I gave my usual response. I talked with her a lot as I was fascinated by what she was trying to do but remained resolute. Eventually she went somewhere else to train in another personal development course for women and I was happy for her. However, after six months or so she came back and said Please let me do your course. I said, but you have just spent thousands becoming licensed in ***** . I know, she said, but the longer course doesn’t work in Africa (I paraphrase). We talked some more and I was so impressed by her vision and drive. After a while I heard my voice saying:

Well, I am going to licence you to run RenewYou for free.

A few seconds later my brain caught up. Good grief, what I had done? I hadn’t really though it through, but I determined to honour my commitment to her and we made plans to go to Africa and launch RenewYou. I think it was my accountant who said to me “Jane, why are you launching RenewYou on a different continent when you have had numerous requests from trainers here?

She was right of course, so I set about coming up with a model which I could happily deliver and felt true to me and my values. The course is about empowering and supporting women and my licensing model is about supporting trainers to the best of my ability, and helping you build your own successful business (if you need it). If you’d like to know more here is a link to more information. Or, if you’re a subscriber and received this via email, simply click reply and we can arrange to talk, no obligation.

Stay in Touch

I am an avowed Twitter fan so if you’d like to get in touch that way please do. Twitter:@JaneCWoods

I’m also active on LinkedIn and we can link there on Changing People. I always love to hear from you so please feel free to get in touch.


Posted on August 22nd, 2018 by

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