This year, International Women’s Day is putting inclusion at the forefront, and how together in our everyday lives and workplaces we can empower the promotion of gender equality, our collective achievements and addressing persistent challenges faced by women.

This year’s theme, #InspireInclusion, encourages space for inclusive environments, meaningful discussions, advocacy and actions towards building a culture shift in the workplace that empowers and supports women at every level, especially those starting off in their careers.

Here at RHASS, most of our team are female, which is uncommon, especially for the agricultural industry but we hope that this is a positive sign for both the farming and event industry. In celebration of International Women’s Day we asked our female team members who are under 30 what inspires them, their thoughts on the inclusion in the workplace and what it means to be a young professional woman!


Katy, 21, Competitions Administrator

Being a Competitions Administrator, working within the Livestock and Competitions department at RHASS means I am part of the team responsible for running all competitions during the Royal Highland Show. As a woman working for this Charity, I am proud to have the opportunity to contribute to such a prestigious event, showcasing the best in Scottish Agriculture and rural life.

Additionally, I am proud to be working in my role at such a young age as this shows my dedication to my job and the agricultural industry. It brings me a sense of accomplishment seeing projects I have led on, being successfully executed during the show

My mum has always inspired me, due to her strength and resilience. Her kindness is also admirable as she always gives unwavering support to me and all those around her. She is always volunteering for organisations, or helping out wherever she can! I feel that her guidance throughout my upbringing has helped shape my values and made me realise the importance of overcoming challenges with a positive and forward thinking attitude.

Working for RHASS has made me appreciate that working in an inclusive environment is important as this leads to improved teamwork, which in turn creates a more productive team. This also gives an overall feeling of positivity within the workplace where everyone feels valued and supported.

RHASS allowed me time off at the end of last year, to travel which has always been a dream of mine. I travelled to America, Australia and New Zealand. This time away allowed for personal growth, travelling alone for part of my trip helped me build my self-confidence and independence.

The advice I would give to other young woman pursuing their passions is to embrace challenges, to view these challenges as opportunities for growth and learning. Don’t let setbacks discourage you, instead use them as fuel to move forward and improve on yourself.


Blayne our Tradestands Executive
Blayne, 28, Account Executive, Tradestands

Working in the Tradestand Department has been a great opportunity to be part of a large-scale event that celebrates Scottish agriculture, culture and community. Through this experience, I have learned from influential industry female leaders and have gained valuable experience that will be beneficial to my career. Working for the RHS has allowed me to gain a deeper insight into the agricultural industry, especially after growing up in a city. Through RHASS, I have been fortunate enough to attend an Agricultural Show in Paris and many other UK shows. This great learning opportunity has inspired my future planning for the RHS and has advanced my professional development.

At RHASS you feel supported as a woman through the nurturing culture amongst staff, management and directors. This culture allows us to make meaningful contributions and inspire positive change. I am fully supported by my manager who actively encourages my development and growth. In the past, I have been faced with unsupportive females and it is encouraging that my coworkers promote a culture of support and collaboration.

After listening to the ‘How to Fail’ podcast, I have been inspired by Elizabeth Day and her many female guests. They speak through inspiring career journeys, relatable female daily struggles and how they celebrate failures and use them to succeed. The stories are influential and comforting.

To me, an inclusive environment gives you a sense of belonging, where you feel supported to achieve results, feel heard, and continue to develop professionally. My advice for women navigating their careers is to not be afraid to make mistakes, embrace challenges within the workplace with confidence, support other colleagues in their own journeys and don’t be afraid to ask for help.



Catriona, 24, Competitions Executive

In my role at RHASS  I lead on the Livestock and Shearing sections whilst working alongside my colleagues who coordinate Equine, the Scottish Championships and Technical Innovations.

Whilst the Agricultural Industry has traditionally been male dominated this isn’t a barrier, I feel I have come up against within my career. Working as part of the Show Team is hugely rewarding and we are incredibly lucky to have an experienced and dedicated team where the ability to carry out your job is valued as a more important factor than gender or age. The number of females working within the organisation is a testament to this and I feel proud to be part of the team continuing this.

I am also lucky to have grown up on my family farm in Peeblesshire in an environment where gender hasn’t been a consideration and I’ve always been encouraged to grasp opportunities, a theme which has continued within my working life at RHASS.

The women I was surrounded by from a young age have never let gender define them, indirectly inspiring me throughout my childhood. I am also inspired by those women who unfortunately have faced barriers and have persevered past these improving the industry for our generation.

My advice to other young women setting out on their career journey, whether that be in the agricultural industry or otherwise, is to find a career you enjoy and feel you can progress in. Continually being pushed with a supportive team around you will allow you to develop as a person and within your career, which in time supports you to make changes. Resilience is important, and one small setback shouldn’t put you off. My final key piece of advice is don’t let your age or gender stop you!


Amy, 21, Events Administrator

I work at the Royal Highland Centre as an Event Administrator, alongside being a 4th year full-time Event Management Student so I’m early on in my career! I take pride in being part of an organisation where I can express my views and drive positive change.

Every day, my female coworkers, motivate me to expand my knowledge, refine my abilities, and advance my career. I feel empowered and encouraged by the presence of these strong women in my workplace.

I look up to women like, Angelica Malin, Emma Sinclair, Carolyn McCall and many more for inspiration, as they challenge past stereotypes and are ascending to success. This is a path I wish to follow in my own career.

In my personal life, I take inspiration from strong women like, my mum and my gran. Despite facing gender discrimination in their respective eras, they navigated it with grace and achieved success. I find that to be inspiring.

Promoting an inclusive workplace is crucial for fostering continual growth and personal development. Valuing both genders is essential for success, in my view.

The advice I would give to women, who like me, are in the early stages of their career? To pursue every dream, whether it’s big or small, and never allow anyone to undermine your self-worth. Remember, nobody will prioritise your career development more than you, so always prioritise yourself.


Ines, 29, RHC Sales Account Executive

I oversee the Pavilion at Ingliston, a vibrant events venue located at the heart of the Royal Highland Centre (RHC). It’s an exciting position that combines my love for sales with the dynamic atmosphere of hosting various events.

What makes me proud as a woman working for RHASS and the RHC is the unique blend of sectors – agriculture and events – both traditionally male-dominated. However, I take pride in being part of a female-dominated office, surrounded by skilled professionals who excel in their roles. It’s uplifting to contribute to an environment where gender is not a barrier to success.

I draw my inspiration from women who fearlessly fight for what they deserve, regardless of societal judgments. Any woman who champions not only her own rights but also fights for the rights of others, is a source of inspiration. What really motivates me is their resilience and determination.

Working in an inclusive environment is crucial. It’s about equality and fairness. In a workplace where opportunities, pay, and respect aren’t determined by gender, I feel lucky. It’s a place where people are valued for their contributions, skills, and abilities, rather than being defined by their gender.

To young women pursuing their careers or passions, my advice is simple: embrace the power to do whatever you want. Put aside your doubts, believe in your abilities and recognize that the path to your dreams is yours to carve.

This year, International Women’s Day is putting inclusion at the forefront, and how together in our everyday lives and workplaces we can empower the promotion of gender equality, our collective achievements and addressing persistent challenges faced by women.

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