Andi Lucas is determined to make sure her start-up fosters a family-friendly ethos so her female staff feel valued, feel like there's real career progression potential and, most of all, feel equal.
She is the founder of X-Hemp, a Tasmanian company that processes hemp fibre to increase the uses for low-THC cannabis from the expanding local industry.
It has been a success so far, but the experience has also shown her how many barriers women face when trying to enter the world of business.
"I think certainly parenting is the main issue," Ms Lucas said.
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"If women aren't supported in family-friendly workplaces, it's really difficult to make a choice: does someone want to have a career that's very dedicated, that they're passionate about, that they're dedicating their life to, do they then sacrifice being a parent? Do they try to balance that?
"I see it all the time with the women around me, it's a massive struggle to be both a working parent and a career-oriented person."
Financing plays a key role in the world of start-ups, which is where unconscious bias can make an impact. Ms Lucas points to studies which show how loan officers favour certain people based on their gender, race, age and other identifiers.
"If you look at studies for success with loan rates, they're often lower for women," she said.
"I think if you were to speak to a bank manager, they would never knowingly think that they declined an application because they were female.
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"But it is consistently proven if you do blind applications where there is not actually identifying information about gender, about race, about age, loan application results are vastly different."
Hemp is a booming industry in Tasmania, but there's still room for growth. Ms Lucas is also the executive officer of the Tasmanian Hemp Association, bringing together key industry voices to advocate for improved policies and regulations.
She was one of six Tasmanian women to be awarded a scholarship from the state government to participate in an Australian Institute of Company Directors program, announced to coincide with International Women's Day 2021.
"To be a recipient of a scholarship like this is a huge advantage for me and my business," Ms Lucas said.
"As my company grows and we take on a more formal board structure, this will be a critical part for that.
"From my personal perspective, I think equal representation in leadership roles is absolutely critical."