It’s International Women’s Day, and we’re thankful for an extra opportunity to acknowledge the spectacular wāhine who are part of the BedsRus whānau.
We’re right on board with this mission, and we think the success of the wāhine we’re about to spotlight shows a beautiful shift away from a traditional work environment, where women would face unique challenges that many of their colleagues didn’t.
By removing barriers to access and empowering women into leadership roles and beyond, it’s a real privilege to see what can be achieved when everyone has a fair shot.
Spotlight on our Wāhine
These women deserve our admiration all year round, but International Women’s Day is the perfect time to celebrate them and what they have achieved as part of the BedsRus family.
Read on to see what they love about working with BedsRus, as well as their top sleep tips!
Lynda Townend, BedsRus Support Office Manager
Lynda is our leading light in the support office, and the glue that holds our entire business and member group together.
“International Women’s Day is a chance to shine a bright light on the amazing women out there in the business community."
“The landscape is improving—but it’s a wonderful opportunity to recognise and celebrate the level of passion, professionalism and knowledge across all sectors and at all levels. I love that women seem so motivated to encourage and empower each other—that, to me, is everything.”
After 8+ years in the support office, Lynda has quite a perspective on our many female store owners throughout the country.
Her favourite thing about the BedsRus wāhine?
“It has to be their passion for the brand, and their community. They are very connected to their local communities and take great pains to give exceptional service and look after them.
"And also their enthusiasm for networking and team events, this is a group that celebrates their friendships and success.”
We’re so thankful to Lynda for her tireless commitment to supporting our BedsRus community.
Bev & Brodie, Mother-Daughter BedsRus Duo
“International Women's Day, to us, is celebrating women being able to achieve and do anything and bring positive value to the world.”
Bev, store owner of BedsRus Otorohanga, and her daughter Brodie, store owner of the brand spanking new BedsRus Te Awamutu, are a beautiful example of generations of women making the workplace work for them.
They were stoked to pick up the Swisstek award last year for biggest growth in their new Te Awamutu store.
What does Bev have to say about working alongside her daughter?
“Brodie and I have always worked well together: we know what makes each other tick, and our strengths and weaknesses. We do have a special bond and enjoy each other's company and banter.”
It’s incredible to see this level of growth and success across our franchises, and it’s especially impressive that this duo have expanded their businesses across the Waikato region.
Vicki, Store Owner of BedsRus Kerikeri since 2008
Vicki epitomises how hard work and dedication can lead to achieving big things.
Early in her career, Vicki was raising her young family by day, and working night shifts to make ends meet.
Her natural care and love for people was clear even in her next role as a teacher aide, assisting disabled teenagers to integrate into school.
In 2008, after running a successful signage business in Auckland, Vicki was drawn to the warmth and community spirit of the far north.
Vicki purchased BedsRus Kerikeri, and moved it to the main street. Since then, Vicki has been helping her local community sleep sweetly, and steadily growing her business, even through tough retail times.
We’re so proud of what Vicki has achieved with hard work, great customer service, and by all accounts an incredibly warm heart.
Paula, Store Owner of Kāpiti, Lower Hutt and Porirua
Paula is the proud owner of three BedsRus stores: Kāpiti, Lower Hutt, and Porirua. In each store, she’s built outstanding staff and management teams who work together to keep Welly snoozing soundly.
As one of our most decorated members, she’s very much a high achiever with several awards under her belt including the 2021 Electra Business of the Year Award, Best in Retail Award and an Award for innovation.
Her secret to success?
“Have a clear vision from the outset—and love what you do!”
It’s phenomenal that Paula is gaining the recognition she so clearly deserves, and we have a great deal of admiration for her as a business owner.
Top Sleep Tips from our Strong Female Leads
Insider sleep tips from the women who help Kiwis have sweeter dreams every day:
Bev: “If you work hard enough you have no choice but to sleep AND of course a damn good Sleepyhead bed and pillow.”
Lynda:“Bath. Tea. Bed. Really basic but it works. And sometimes a meditation app if the mind needs calming.”
Vicki:“Get your cot comfy with cosy duvets, pillows and a touch of crisp linen.
Reduce disturbances in the bedroom.
Open a window and get fresh air circulating through the room.
Spend the night with good company!”
We’re honoured to have these incredible women working alongside us, and we’re so excited to see what else they’ll achieve in the coming year.
About International Women’s Day 2023
The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is embracing equity. That means starting a worldwide conversation about exactly what “equity” means.
What’s the difference between equity and equality?
People often use the words "equity" and "equality" interchangeably, but it's important to recognise that they're actually different. We all have different starting points, so it doesn’t make sense to give everyone the exact same resources and opportunities and expect it to magically make everything fair.
We think the IWD website summed up the difference pretty well:
“Equality means each individual or group of people is given the same resources or opportunities.
“Equity recognises that each person has different circumstances, and allocates the exact resources and opportunities needed to reach an equal outcome.”
We value equity in the workplace, and are always striving to embody this as an organisation. We believe that things can always improve, and we will continue to work hard to ensure that the women in our organisation have access to what they each need to succeed.
As for our efforts towards an equitable workplace, we’ll let Lynda speak to that:
“It’s a very collaborative and supportive environment where we are encouraged to think outside the square, extend our knowledge and skill set and to bring the fun.
“The flexibility we are afforded to help balance home/work life has been a game changer for the working moms in the office. We have the confidence that we can come in and get on with our job with the knowledge that when that dreaded school phone number pops up on your screen, you can drop and run.
“Also, we can bring in our fur babies to share the love.”
Happy International Women’s Day to Lynda, Bev, Brodie, Vicki, Paula, and all of the other wonderful wāhine at BedsRus and everywhere across Aotearoa: we’ve come a long way, let’s keep going!
Although International Women’s Day happens once a year, and whilst it is a wonderful opportunity to reflect on what we’ve collectively accomplished so far, we know it’s the other 364 days where the growth really happens.
We’ll always examine what more we can do, and strive to achieve a more equitable work culture and environment within our organisation.