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A Change Has Begun

Recruiting a diverse workforce is no longer about filling a quota. It is to gain strength as an organisation

Don’t wait. Don’t stop. It’s your turn. Success has no limits and talent has no gender. If one truly believes that, then women are as successful as men. A client of mine had once asked me if the candidate we had shortlisted was a woman. He also wanted to know whether she was married, how long she had been married and whether she had had her first kid and planned to have the second. When asked why these questions were important, the client said that the line manager felt that should the candidate get pregnant, she would not be able to work and certainly not be able to give her hundred per cent. Are men solely responsible for archaic thinking — or do we women give up too soon?

Well, you will always find some such managers, but in a world being “Bold for a Change” — there is no room for such mindset. Gender diversity is a popular concept, to which organisations, barring a few, only pay lip service. Some organisations focus on driving this change, by encouraging and hiring women for functions never heard of before. Some examples are women engineers in the manufacturing industry and women in the supply chain, procurement, quality and maintenance. Organisations are providing crèche services, extended pregnancy leaves and sabbaticals for women, who have worked for five or six years in an organisation. There is new thinking on hiring women part time, or in shifts, so they may balance work and their personal lives.

Some companies focus on hiring women who have taken a sabbatical. Others focus on training women for new roles, on balancing their personal lives and work, on building regional diversity to encourage cross-culture in their organisations. Many companies make policies around women and hold sensitivity workshops as part of their inclusion plans, but Some companies focus on hiring women who have taken a sabbatical. Others focus on training women for new roles, on balancing their personal lives and work, on building regional diversity to encourage cross-culture in their organisations. Many companies make policies around women and hold sensitivity workshops as part of their inclusion plans, but how many actually build diversity as a part of their culture?

The big change for women working towards successful careers, has already begun, but the real revolution will only take place over the next few years. One of my previous bosses had once told me in a review that I could not do sales and should go back home and get married to a nice guy and start a family. There will always be many such bosses, managers and family members, who will discourage women to work and be themselves. If a man fails at a job, it’s acceptable and if a woman fails, it’s a stigma. There has been a radical shift in the culture of most multinational organisations, which encourage women to take up jobs other than those in their comfort zones, but Indian organisations are still struggling with the concept.

The change in thought process, not only requires that men change, but women too need to change. Discrimination begins at birth. I have always seen boys inherit the business as a legacy, but very few daughters take on the legacy. We have accepted it because we never had a say, but it’s time for women to openly talk of their ambitions — about what they want and have the right and freedom to be, on an equal footing. Recruiting a diverse workforce is no longer about filling a quota. It is a mission to gain strength as an organisation. The change has begun, but it will take some time for the revolution to pick up momentum.

Tyche Jobs as an organisation, is now focusing on building diversity candidates in niche and critical functions. We are playing an active role in mentoring and counselling women who want to have successful careers and want to reach leadership levels. In today’s world an increasing number of women hires talk about the culture of the organisation and this helps draw the best talent to the table and retain exsisting ones.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.




Priya Marwah

The author is Managing Director, Tyche Jobs Executive Search Consultants

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