The Manifesto: A Frontier In Engaging Men

PWN Global is a frontier in engaging men. Today, we witness that many women’s networks and the organisations working on empowering women in leadership, talk about engaging men. Some of these organisations even welcome men into their networks.

PWN Global initiated its “Engaging Men” strategic pillar as a frontier amongst all the similar networks. Male executives accompanied PWN Global as board members at both local and global levels, co-presidents, co-working group leaders, panel speakers, members, advisory board members, mentors, event participants, facilitators and workshop participants, from a very early stage.

At the very beginning it was challenging to ask men to join a women’s network. I remember, we even considered changing our name of Professional Women’s Network’s to encourage men to join us. In time, the majority of men changed their perceptions about becoming part of a women’s network. And we, as women, proudly changed our perceptions too. 

I remember two local board members in Istanbul were questioning the idea of inviting men to join our crusade for gender balanced leadership, in the early stages of growing male participation in our community. Since then, many PWN networks have experienced the benefits of male executives’ involvement and positive outcomes for their networks.

One of the first activities we use to of engage men was encouraging them to participate in our workshops. We organised two workshops in 2015 and 2016 with male executives. We had American, Italian, Dutch, British, Argentinian, French, Greek and Turkish participants. We intentionally organised these workshops for exclusive male participation. This enabled an open and honest conversation around the challenges that are perceived by men when they support gender balanced leadership.

Giving the men a safe space to ask questions that they might have struggled to ask with a female presence in the room, enabled a better understanding of how we could engage more men. The men in the room were able to openly discuss the facts on gender-balanced leadership. As an output of these workshops, and subsequent meetings with men in the PWN community around the world, a charter was created: The PWN Global Engaging Men Manifesto.     

Different from classical manifestos, PWN Global Engaging Men Manifesto is in question format: Our intention here is to engage everyone to ask questions themselves. So often, providing a manifesto of statements means that people can remain unresponsive, embracing or rejecting the statements in their minds. Neuropsychology suggests that the mind is unable to remain in an unresponsive state when a question is asked. We intentionally ask manifesto questions to encourage our participants to think more about gender balance leadership.   

PWN Global Engaging Men ManifestoAs a result of these many interviews, we are very excited to broadcast our PWN Global Engaging Men Manifesto videos on the PWN Global LinkedIN page on a weekly basis: The Manifesto comprises 50 questions, and we have recorded the responses of one question from each of our male executives. Our desire is to share their thoughts and inspire and encourage more men to do the same. In our journey, we will surprise you with more undiscovered ways to engage men, very soon! 

The next step before our big surprise in engaging men is to reach out, to more men, to encourage them to give more thought to gender-balanced leadership, by signing our PWN Global Engaging Men Manifesto. 

To see the Manifesto in full, check out our Balanced Leadership page on the PWN Global website. 




Date: January 2021
Author: Funda Sezgin, VP Engaging Men, PWN Global
Copy Editor: Rebecca Fountain, Head of Marketing and Communications, PWN Global

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more.

I accept cookies from this site