Successful Business = Diverse workforce = Women + Men in the ecosystem

Successful Business Diverse workforce Men Women in the ecosystem

She knew she could do it, so she did!

If I may ever define a woman, I will say this to the world. There’s almost nothing that ‘she’ can’t accomplish. Having tried to contour the existence of women, society might have presented a number of duties and names to a woman. However, that fails to take away her courage and innate strength in every name she might have been called.

Has the status of women changed in the country? What about women’s safety? Why are there only a few females in leadership/powerful roles? Why do we still have to plead for our menstruation leaves? These are a few frowning questions that significantly changes the meaning of women’s empowerment. Regretfully, even the government couldn’t strike off an issue mentioned above. So, when they talk about women’s empowerment, it somehow feels void.

Why do we talk about women’s empowerment?

With women’s empowerment comes equality in society. Besides, it’s a process of providing equal opportunities for women to participate and excel in all spheres of life. It involves giving women the tools and resources they need to make their own decisions, exercise their rights, and achieve their full potential. Empowering women includes creating a safe and inclusive environment, promoting education and skill-building among them. It also involves challenging gender stereotypes and discrimination and ensuring women have a voice and agency in all aspects of society.

Akshata Apte, Vice President, HR, TheSmallBigIdea rightly says, “Women empowerment is of utmost importance, but the day it stops becoming a topic of discussion only around the first week of March is when we perhaps can achieve true gender parity. We believe, true gender parity is the goal; women empowerment is just the means.”

Empowering women is not just about giving them a seat at the table but equipping them with the right tools to thrive in leadership roles. We must create an environment that fosters growth and encourages women to take the next step. Creating safe, nurturing spaces for learning, experimentation, and community is also critical in leadership development programs for women. Elaborates Sujala Martis, Director-Consumer Marketing, Platinum Guild International-India.

As a responsible brand, we view women’s empowerment as creating a workplace culture and environment that fosters gender equality and offers women equal opportunities, resources, and support to realize their full potential in the workplace. We provide compensation that is not determined by gender but depends on skills and abilities only. Says Aparajita Mukhopadhyay, Chief Operating Officer at IntrCity | IntrCity SmartBus.

We asked leaders from across industries to speak about women’s empowerment and its importance in the ecosystem. With impeccable prowess, the ‘women’ leaders outline the importance of the women workforce in an organization.

Jyotsna Uttamchandani, Executive Director, Syska, says – “According to McKinsey’s 2018 report, increasing the number of women in the workforce could result in a $17 trillion rise in Global GDP by 2025, with India contributing almost $700 billion. However, the benefits of more women in the workforce extend beyond the economic realm. It also helps address social issues and increases women’s financial independence and life control. In addition, women bring higher emotional intelligence to the table, which can lead to more compassionate, empathetic, and organized leadership, creating a healthy environment for growth and benefiting the company. Studies have shown that greater diversity in a company leads to above-average financial returns, better decision-making, and improved retention of women. It’s important to recognize that men and women bring different attitudes and opinions to the table, complementing each other and leading to increased productivity. Ultimately, greater gender diversity in the workforce could lead to significant economic gains.”

Outlining the research figures, Unnati Gajjar, Head of Marketing, Hanu, says India tops the world in producing female graduates in STEM. However, it ranks 19th in employing them. With Indian companies betting on young workers to drive the fastest economic growth, this vast untapped potential is getting missed out.

More and more efforts are put into reaching out to women in remote areas and college graduates who are hesitant to explore corporate careers. We need a better dialogue around women-friendly corporate programs that help upskill, accelerate, and restart their career.

Aparajita Mukhopadhyay says- To foster a diverse and inclusive workplace that benefits all employees, companies must prioritize women’s empowerment by implementing policies and programs that support their advancement. By doing so, companies can promote a culture of gender equality that benefits women and the organization.

Anita Kukreja, Head of Marketing and Channel Sales, IceWarp India, says, We (women) also make up a significant portion of the consumer market and having a diverse workforce that includes women can help a company better understand and meet the needs of this demographic. Additionally, having women in the workforce not only helps to promote better diversity and inclusion but often leads to better morale, higher productivity, and even greater financial success. With more women in the workplace, businesses are more likely to attract and retain top talent, creating a strong and dynamic workforce.

How do brands ensure women’s empowerment in their territory?

Sowmya Reddy, Founder and Director, Nourish You – At Nourish You, we recognize the importance of diversity and equal opportunity. As an employer, we do not discriminate based on race, religion, colour, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status. Women have played an integral role in our company, from being part of our founding team to leading marketing and product development. Many of our key purchase decisions are made by women. We believe that having a diverse and inclusive workplace benefits both our company and society as a whole.

Anushka Iyer, Founder and CEO, Wiggles – At Wiggles, we are proud to have a team that has a higher percentage of women in leadership roles and making their mark. As a leader, I believe in a personal mission to inspire and empower everyone from all walks of life-based on their capabilities and talents and make sure they pursue their dreams, be courageous and confident and lead the world with kindness and strength. Diversity is a key contributor to organizational growth. At Wiggles, we strongly believe in building an ecosystem that encourages equity with equality, and all our processes are in accordance with these key factors.

Jyotsna Uttamchandani – I believe in having an equal ratio of men and women to ensure that all perspectives are represented and considered. Women who are equally represented on a team are more likely to feel empowered and valued. It is important to ensure that women have equal opportunities to participate, contribute, and lead. This can help women build confidence, skills, and expertise. Our men-to-women ratio is 4:3, and we are focused on expanding our team size to level the ratio in the coming year. At Syska, we already have a strong maternity leave policy in place and will soon be introducing the same for surrogate mothers as well.

Akshata Apte says – With policies like pay parity gender neutral hiring across roles and levels, 55 percent of our staff strength comprises women. With more women joining not just our workforce, we also have 80 percent comprising of our core leadership team; we believe we are on our way to creating a safe space for people of all genders to grow, learn and succeed.

At Insight, 60% of the leadership is women. According to Forbes and Fortune, insight is one of just four organizations among the 500 largest publicly traded U.S. companies led by both a female CEO and CFO. Such representation would be difficult without the right culture and diverse workforce. Informed Unnati Gajjar.

A workforce that includes women and has strong female leaders creates a balanced, diverse, and inclusive work culture poised for success. Certain traits come more intuitively to women, such as compassion, humility, empathy, and the ability to listen, or the ability to nurture, to name a few, and these are essential to a more transformational form of leadership.

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