FemInEM consists of three main sections: blog posts, an honors section, and the speakers bureau.
The blog posts are informative, well-researched, and frequently personal. They cover content that highlights the unique but inspiring journeys of many women practicing emergency medicine. Topics range from the perception of women as resuscitation leaders, difficult work-family integration issues, and the gender gap in salary for women physicians. It’s a forum to proactively and productively discuss the difficult issues many face as we “CHOOSE to have kids, try to be super-mom, expect [our] colleagues to work around [us] and [have a] personal life.”
The Honors and Speakers Bureau sections are unique to FemInEM. Through these sections, and positive but unapologetic peer support, FemInEM subtly addresses many of the biases that women have faced for years.
Self-promotion is a quality that has come to be expected and often revered in men but generally resented in women. An early post on FemInEM discussed this topic in detail. In this piece, titled “On Self-Promotion: Wisdom from Paul the Maintenance Man,” the hospital maintenance man is quoted as saying, “All the men around here hang up their plaques. None of the women do.”
Self-promotion, when accurate and genuine, is beneficial and helps others understand your value. Unfortunately, self-promotion can also decrease likability, a bias proven to prevent women from advancing in the workplace. Striking the right balance between likability, competence, and confidence is frequently mentioned as the enormous obstacle for women leaders. So FemInEM decided to make it easier for women to share their accomplishments.
FemInEM Honors is the place to celebrate the amazing accomplishments of women in this field. Any time a woman physician receives an award or honor, a page dedicated to that achievement is created and promoted.That post is then disseminated through all of our social media channels. The response has been overwhelming. We used to have to seek out awardees, searching Twitter or Facebook for notifications. Now there are unsolicited emails from chairs, program directors, and the women themselves, reminding that it actually isn’t about self-promotion at all—it’s about having a neutral space for peer and mentor support.
The Speakers Bureau grew out of a debate on the lack of women speakers at emergency medicine conferences. The bureau is the first searchable database of women speakers in emergency medicine. Each profile page has a short bio of the speaker and her topics of interest. In addition, when available, we’ve embedded a video or podcast of the speaker in action.