Roseann Kelly, chief executive of Women in Business, has seen her fair share of challenges over 11 years at the top of the organisation.
ut she warns that Covid-19 has the power to push her agenda to the side - or even backwards.
Roseann's goal, and that of Women in Business (WiB), is to push diversity in the workplace, support women in their careers and promote and nurture female entrepreneurship.
Looking at the facts and figures, it should be an easy sell. In fact it shouldn't be an issue in today's workplace but the fight is still taking place, and not even nearly done, says Roseann.
She cites a report on female participation in business by Alison Rose, now chief executive of Ulster Bank parent NatWest Group. "One of the key findings of the report is that if women started businesses at the rate men do, it would add £250bn to UK economy.
"A UN report also showed that women do more hours of work than men, and a lot of those hours are unpaid.
"We are 50% of the population and 60% of post graduates. We are also 53% of undergraduates and we outperform on A-levels. The skill base is huge, and if we let that talent go back into the home would be dreadful," says Roseann.
"But if you bring the subject up, it's like a glaze comes over people - even that £250bn figure doesn't quite hit the mark, or spur on people to tackle diversity.
"We have made progress, but if we do not build back better and try and keep pushing, we could go backwards and that worries me. I understand there are huge issues out there but if you put diversity to the side, you're putting a key tool for a brilliant economy to the side."
Covid-19 is about to drop a "tsunami of job losses" and women will be the worst affected, explains Roseann. She says it's an issue that shouldn't just concern women but also government, society and employers.
"I am part of the Women's Enterprise Policy Group which is made up of 14 UK members. Half those involved are academics and the research is pretty sound and what they talk about is a tsunami of redundancies, namely in the retail and hospitality sectors and that's traditionally where women tend to be. Women will be hardest hit in terms of redundancies coming out of this pandemic," she says.
Childcare is also a continuing problem for women.
And she says that in 2020, not many inroads have been made in improving access to childcare.
"It's a huge issue and it always has been. This should be the Government and employers' responsibility because it's a barrier to women developing in the workforce and they are traditionally the key carer so, if you genuinely believe in diversity, in having a diverse team, management, community, etc, which will improve everything then you have to sort out childcare.
"This whole issue of diversity, it doesn't just belong to us, women. It's a governmental, societal and employer issue and everyone has a role."
She highlights the work of female leaders during the Covid crisis as an illustration of how a working woman can contribute greatly to society.
"If you look round the world during this, at the leaders who performed best, it's the women. That needs to be something that is flagged and highlighted. They bring compassion and empathy to the role and these are key attributes that are normally looked down on but it's what is working now.
"And if you look at the last recession, women are more risk-adverse." She refers to Lehman Brothers, the global investment firm whose bankruptcy in 2008 heralded the start of the credit crunch. "If it had have been Leyman Sisters instead of Brothers, things might have been different."
As a charity, Women in Business has been hard hit during the pandemic, she says. It's lost a huge proportion of the revenue it traditionally generates through events and social gatherings. But she says the organisation is working in the background, welcoming more and more members and running support events virtually. "The whole events industry is going to have to adapt and change and we will move with that.
"There are certain meetings can be done very efficiently on Zoom, but where you need creativity and vision you need people in a room."
On November 5, WiB will host a new virtual leadership conference that will demonstrate the strengths and characteristics of female leaders. Roseann says it will highlight female leaders and hear their perspectives on effective leadership. But she adds: "We really want both men and women to be part of that event because that is part of looking at diversity."
This event sits alongside a wide and varied mix of other seminars, interviews and sector-specific round tables.
"Women in Business runs a female specific enterprise programme 'Yes You Can', supported by invest NI and councils," adds Roseann.
"It was something that was a battle to get going and there is one year left of it.
"The government needs to take that on board and continue to provide if they're taking the Rose report seriously.
"And we will continue our work. We've been very busy and we are delighted to have such great support and our membership continues to grow. We now have over 4200 members.
"We also recently launched our Young Women's Network, which was set up for 18-25 year-olds to support career progression. That age group didn't have mentors and didn't network, and the earlier they get networking and get mentors it will be really beneficial."
It's been an eventful year for the business chief, in and out of the office. Roseann admits that she found it a struggle to adapt to working from home. The mother of three swapped networking dinners for Zooms from her daughter's home in Chester where her first grandchild, Darragh, arrived over lockdown.
Now back at home in Northern Ireland's she's working amid "boxes and deliveries" as her son and husband's business, Cowfield Design, meets demands of its growing online sales.
"There is a whole piece there around working from home, says Roseann. It's a wellbeing piece and we have been putting on a lot of webinars to address that, promoting things that produce a positive mindset, including meditation and healthy eating.
"We all have a lot going on and we will be addressing all of that through our programmes."