The discussion around the rights of women at workplace and in society at large has gained momentum over the past decade and has been propelled by recent incidents in the corporate world. I personally however believe that this should not really be a subject of discussion. A woman’s rights to express, grow, contribute, feel safe, etc. at the workplace should be a self-evident truth. We don’t ask for special privileges or treatment, all we ask for is equal opportunities, equal encouragement and appreciation. Things like maternity leaves shouldn’t be looked upon as a privilege, rather acknowledged as our birthright as we’re giving birth to the next generation.
We make conscious efforts to ensure that the environment is amicable for women whilst ensuring equality is maintained, whether it is equal pay to opportunities of growth, we treat all our employees at par sans the gender bias. As mentioned by the recently crowned Miss Universe 2019 Zonzibini Tunzi, “Leadership is something we encourage every employee to take up, especially women. If you work hard, you truly deserve to reach for the stars.”
We belong to a society which has labeled women to be the weaker sex, an archaic bias based on complete figment of superstition, one that women around the world have made a mockery of with achievements that on a daily basis propel our race to unimaginable heights. Pioneering and innovating are attributes that know no gender, and excellence can be achieved in spite of hurdles of discrimination and bias. If we can help every woman realize that, we can do so much in our work spaces.
We encourage that women support women in order to achieve new heights. Conversations & actions revolving around inclusiveness, teamwork and empathy are the order of the day to get the best out of the available resources within our country.
While discussions and debates have been ongoing over the subject in various forums for a while now, it’s time to turn the good intentions into actions by the corporate world and various governing bodies. Concrete actions to ensure the safety of women within their offices have been incorporated like stringent policy making under an ICC -Internal Complaints Committee (mandatory under POSH Act 2013). We have an absolute zero tolerance towards any kind of harassment at the workplace, which we feel should be at the core of all organizations. One must ensure the safety of women, conduct various seminars and workshops that help foster awareness and dispel with discriminatory or predatory mindsets at the workplace.
Women breaking through ranks, shattering the proverbial glass ceilings of dogma and bias form inspiring stories every day. Rising to helm multiple spectra of industries and companies globally, luminaries like Indra Nooyi, Sheryl Sandberg, Kiran Mazumdar Shaw and Falguni Nayar are all trailblazers par excellence, to name a few. Nowadays, women are not only holding management roles but also leading projects and cracking deals but are also owners of the company. The policies are created to include the various roles and responsibilities in the life of a woman, as well as equal growth opportunities and remuneration for the woman employees.
Equal opportunities of growth and promotion that completely cleanse corporate policy of any discriminatory bias, providing an inclusive and meritocratic platform of progress for all, require a larger shift in mindset of employers. In most companies, Indian or MNCs, there are typically 35% women to 65% men on an average. Recent studies show that for every 100 men promoted, roughly 75 women were promoted and this was not attributed to skill or performance at work. This is indicative of the ills of prevailing mindsets, which the corporate world must work to rid. Last, but not the least, it’s also important to mentor women at workplaces and help them grow and encourage each other. Once the mindset changes, everything changes.