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TGt Meets...Kari Sherman, Co-Founder of Tom Pom Organic - IWD Special

By Kari Sherman who is co-founder of Tom Pom Organic, a freshly frozen baby food manufacturer based in Surrey and now distributing nationwide.

What do you #choosetochallenge?

I would of course challenge any situation where inequality is clear.  If I felt a woman(or person of minority, transgender, etc.)  was being treated or looked past because of gender, race or sexuality  I do and always will challenge it.  Sometimes it feels that it is down to lack of education, and kindly and calmly pointing it out often is quite effective in raising awareness.

Thinking of your own experience in the world of business – which inequalities, if any, have you experienced personally or witnessed around gender? 

I do not feel I have personally experienced inequality and have chosen jobs and companies that value my skills, experience and all that I can offer and would not stay in a situation where I was treated disrespectfully.

What do you think women offer in particular to the world of business?

As women, we often are built to work hard, multitask and offer a different perspective to situations.  I have always worked in women led industries where women led their teams with clarity, drive, compassion and understanding.

What do you think men offer in particular to the world of business?

Generally, I find, men and women have complementing strengths and it is important they are aware of this and work equally to create the most balanced and successful business environment.  

I have always found men to be stronger in more specialised areas (types of finance for example) where they can focus solely in that area.  Women seems to be stronger at roles that involve a variety of skills and knowledge.

Is gender important when it comes to success in business? 

No.  Education, experience, passion and drive are some important skills that will make a business a success no matter what your gender is. 

Can you name any women you admire? 

From  a young age I was always inspired by Martha Stuart.  Not for her great recipes (which as a food and cooking lover is also great), but as a self made women who became America’s first billionaire through endless work, reinvention, and creativity in creating her media empire that showed younger women that anything is possible.  

Can you name any men in business you admire? 

I admire our marketing director, Robert Goldsmith whose creativity, experience, hard work and belief in us has transformed our position as a challenger brand.  

Do you think women who start their own business experience more challenges than men? 

I do not think that I have had any less success than if I was a man.  Our team is 50/50 men to women and we are growing every day.  I do think that if I was a black woman, on the other hand, that it would be harder to gain traction and possibly get listings with small retailers. 

What do you think about the gender pay gap? 

How is it 2021 and this still exists?  The 1950s have long passed us by, and from sport to managing directors - there should not be any difference in pay for equal roles.  

For more information visit www.tompomorganic.com

Fiona Scott Media Consultancy Swindon

Scott Media

Scott Media is run by a UK-based journalist with more than 20 years' experience in the media - print, radio and television.

6 Gold View, Swindon, Wiltshire, SN5 8GZ

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