Celebrating a day or week just not good enough
Companies must go beyond simple lip service in order to truly make workplaces more diverse, equal and inclusive. Celebrating a day or a week is just not good enough. The advertising industry has historically been an all-boys club. Though one can now see women working in this industry, most are in junior or mid-level roles. It is critical to increase the number of women in leadership positions. Focus should be to provide equal opportunity based on merit and not gender and also extend support in terms of flexible working arrangements, women-friendly policies and an inclusive and sensitive culture to help women advance their careers. If workplaces become more accommodating to the needs of working mothers, most women who drop out of corporate careers due to maternal responsibilities may continue to pursue their professional careers. It is also important to make women and other under-represented communities feel heard and be offered equal opportunities for growth to make the workplace truly equal and inclusive.
– Jyoti Mahendru, Chief People Officer, Wunderman Thompson South Asia
Women contributing equally in roles once led by men
The workplace culture in the jewellery industry has evolved over a period of time, addressing age-old concerns like inclusion, equality, pay-parity, diversity and empowerment of women. Today, women are principal partners in the jewellery industry heading leadership roles and maximising global market demands. Since their understanding of the sector is vast, they act as the gate-keepers of human sentiments and their emotional values associated with any and every purchase. Empowering and engaging women in culture making have become an essential objective in any businesses in the sector.
The sector is supporting a multi-generational workforce and increased participation of women in the decision-making processes, which is in itself a huge transition. Women are now equally contributing to conventional roles (led by male counterparts) like gemstone cutting, mining or managing etc. The corporate culture in India is an example of a thriving diverse ecosystem.
– Isha Sapra, Co-founder & CEO, ausper
An equal seat at the table
A critical change that needs to come through across all industries is the mindset for women at leadership levels. This cuts across the disparity of equal pay across genders that still exists, and the attitude towards a women leader, 360 degrees across organisations. It’s imperative that women are heard better and given an equal seat at the table, especially in the setups that they have helped create and been active contributors in. Since women are blessed with EQ alongwith IQ, I have seen that their inputs have helped create sharper deals, resolve conflicts and create an inclusive, balanced work culture.
– Divya Dixit – Business Strategy and Growth Consultant
From facing the camera to acing it from behind
From the very beginning of motion picture history, women have played prominent roles in front of the camera. Today women are at the forefront of India’s golden age of entertainment – from a leading lady to a leading character, there has been a subtle yet significant shift in the roles women play. But little is known about the major role that women play behind cameras as directors, editors, writers and other creative roles.
We need to commit to creating a space for women to own and share their point of view as a part of creative and artistic freedom. Through which they can drive stories forward and are indeed forging new paths. At the heart of this change is an acknowledgement that women are incredible entertainers, storytellers, actors, writers, technicians, producers, directors, and much more.
– Mamta Bahirvani, Director & Co-Founder, Feed The Wolf
Mentorship and career development programmes
Offering women access to mentorship and career development programmes can help them advance their careers.
Mentorship can help women develop the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in their careers, including leadership skills, communication skills, and industry-specific knowledge. Having a mentor can help women to build confidence in their abilities and feel more empowered to pursue their career goals.
To me this insight became quite clear when I got to know that when Indra Nooyi first took the reins as PepsiCo’s CEO in 2006, she reached out to tech titan Steve Jobs. She wanted his insight on how he ran and transformed Apple. Quite interestingly, amongst the many hacks he shared, one was, “Don’t be too nice.”
When you really don’t get what you want and you really believe that’s the right thing for the company, it’s okay to throw a temper tantrum.
– Mansi Datta, Chief Client Officer & Head – North & East, Wavemaker India
Offering workplace flexibility
For any woman, work-life balance is an important aspect, and it is not an easily achievable task. Today’s lifestyle is highly demanding and juggling between family, kids, friends, clients, and colleagues is challenging. To make this entire process smooth and enjoyable, one change companies in the marketing and PR industry should focus on is offering workplace flexibility.
This could be either by providing flexi work hours, flexible roles within the organisation or even flexible days of work. This brings out a sense of accountability and increases overall productivity. It also empowers women in taking up a larger responsibility thus helping them grow in all aspects of their life. If smartly capitalised, this can be a win-win for both employees and employers.
– Sonam Shah, Founder and CEO, Treize Communications