In the staffing industry, the need for dedicated leaders with a clear vision for change is more critical than ever. Joanie Bily, the newly appointed Chair of the American Staffing Association (ASA) and Chief Experience Officer at Employbridge, stands at the forefront of this transformation.
We had the privilege of meeting Joanie at the ASA Staffing World Conference, where we had an engaging chat with her about her mission and vision.
In this blog post, we will take a closer look at Joanie's mission to elevate the staffing industry as ASA Chair and her commitment to addressing gender disparities in leadership roles within the field.
Elevating the Staffing Industry
As Chair of the ASA, Joanie Bily shoulders the responsibility of promoting the ASA's mission and safeguarding the industry's interests through legislative advocacy. The ASA works closely with legislators to protect the industry from potential challenges and to advocate for policies that support the growth and sustainability of staffing agencies. Joanie's vision encompasses initiatives aimed at enhancing the industry's reputation, raising public awareness, and ensuring ethical and fair practices.
Breaking Barriers: Women in Leadership in the Staffing Industry
Joanie Bily brings attention to a pressing concern within the staffing industry, shedding light on the issue of gender imbalance in executive positions. Her recent book, "Dive In Deep: Strategies to Advance Your Career and Find Balance in Your Life," available in bookstores, offers career advice applicable to both men and women. What sets her commitment apart is her decision to donate all the proceeds from the book to the Women in Leadership Council for the American Staffing Association. Joanie is a strong advocate for empowering women in the industry, recognizing the industry's demographic paradox, where women dominate at lower levels but are underrepresented in C-suite and executive roles.
During our conversation, Joanie shared a significant milestone - the American Staffing Association's board reached a historic 50/50 gender diversity ratio. While this achievement is inspiring, Joanie acknowledges the formidable challenge of extending this balance across the entire industry.
How to Drive Change:
Joanie Bily champions change with a pragmatic approach, emphasizing various strategies to achieve gender diversity and advance women in the staffing industry.
Setting an Example: The American Staffing Association leads by example, actively supporting women in leadership through initiatives such as the Women in Leadership Council and the Women's Conference, known as "Thrive." These efforts serve to empower and encourage women within the industry.
Encouraging Women's Ambitions: Joanie passionately encourages women to pursue leadership roles without reservation. She advocates for setting ambitious goals and pursuing the career opportunities they aspire to.
Allyship: Achieving gender diversity at the executive level necessitates active support and allyship from men in the industry. Joanie emphasizes the pivotal role of male champions for women, advocating for increased representation of female voices in executive positions.
The Intersection of ASA Chair and Women in Leadership
Joanie's dual roles as ASA Chair and advocate for women in leadership offer a unique opportunity for change. She plans to utilize her position to advance gender diversity and inclusion in the staffing industry. Her vision includes mentorship programs, educational initiatives, and support systems tailored to empower women in staffing leadership roles.
The Way Forward
Joanie Bily's vision and goals hold the potential to make a substantial impact on the ASA and the staffing industry as a whole. Her leadership is set to influence the industry by promoting ethical practices, enhancing its image, and championing the cause of women in leadership. Joanie's efforts demonstrate the transformative power of leadership in driving positive change and empowering underrepresented groups in executive positions.
Joanie Bily's vision and mission for the staffing industry and women in leadership are passionately conveyed in her own words as she takes on the role of ASA Chair:
“Being elected as Chair of the ASA Board of Directors at this historic moment of Board-level gender parity is an exceptional honor,” said Bily. “I feel a sense of great anticipation and responsibility as a steward of the ASA and a proponent of this industry. Staffing is at the precipice of a pivotal evolution, facing new disruptions, paradigm shifts, regulations, and legislative challenges, and preparing all of us to not only embrace change – but to become stronger as a result of it – will be a collective effort. I believe that we must continue to provide resources and opportunities for our members to learn, grow, and excel in their respective fields in order to reach new heights of greatness. I’m excited to help lead this work and promote and protect this industry that has helped so many.”