A morning of fresh ideas, experienced leaders, some best practices & strategies – that describes our Leadership Meet in Bengaluru on the 24th of August! It was an extreme honour to host some of the industry’s finest and to bring forth some ideas & best practices on table, about one of the most discussed topics in Diversity – Bringing Women Back to the Workplace & the Mid to Senior Level Leap.
We had Kalyani Yerraguntla from Atlassian as the evangelist for the session, who enabled us to bring a morning full of interesting conversations & ideas with more than 40 leaders across industries at the event!
With a lot of discussion focussing on Career Breaks, Returnship Programs, the need of mentors during returnships, and breaking the unconscious biases, the conversation was also aimed at the organisation structures & whether an organisation would be able to absorb such changes if the strength was relatively smaller in size.
Elaborating on the maternity leave policies of 6 months, a common consensus was found on the difficulty towards the relatively smaller organisations to cope up with the policy, thereby adding it to one of the challenges that an organisation faces.
Hiring an individual for several months, the dynamic nature of the business & role, the key accounts that an individual used to handle – added to the challenges that an organisation faces on a daily basis due to the maternity leave.
What felt extremely necessary was to identify the key candidates, critical roles & resources & then come up with an accelerator programme.
Shifting focus to the type of breaks taken by individuals, the topic facilitated a discussion on whether mentoring was required on returning individuals. While there was a majority vote on returning individuals needing a mentor, it was also felt that the need for a mentor is needed, just only when the person felt that it is needed.
The presence of a mentor could also entail a sense of dissatisfaction amongst the individual leading them to think that they were on a pedestal than the others.
On the contrary, it was also felt that the presence of a mentor or a support structure was essential and required at the leadership levels.
Career breaks are not only taken by returning mothers, but also by men at leadership levels.
The discussion also focussed on some realities on returnships & having a take on whether a candidate should expect a lower salary while returning to the workplace.
It was deeply felt that some sensible & sensitive questions were to be asked to women who were set to return to the workplace.
A question that struck everyone’s chords was whether an organisation should wait for the diverse candidate or whether the organisation should go proceed with the first right candidate.
At Après Midi, the discussion concluded with a question on the success of such returnship programmes, which was followed by some offline discussions and a luncheon.
A huge vote of thanks to Kalyani Yerraguntla from Atlassian for moderating the event to a success & also to all the leaders who were present at the event:
Tina Vinod from Thoughtworks, Shonalie Gupta, Sonal Gupta & Alaknanda Bhattacharjee from Atkins, Srinivas Velidanda from Refinitiv/Thomson Reuters, Soosai Agnel Jude & Rajgopal Rajkumar from Indegene, Meetu Budholia from Kontoor Brands, Shivam N. Sinha from Cloudtail, Priya Adharsh, Sandesh Sridhar & Christian Macolino from Atlassian, Radhika Khurana from Impact Analytics, Vieshaka Dutta from Publicis Sapient, Nazia Tasleem & Rashmi Raveendran from Synechron, Atul Sahgal from Infosys, Vijay Raju from Swiggy, Yeshodha Murthy, Bhavna T Jose, Ravikanth EV from Cargill, Mino Thomas from HP, Lizzie Chapman from ZestMoney, Shreya Chaudhary from NetApp, Kishore Sambasivam from OnMobile, Sneha Arora from SAP, Harjeet Pruthi from VMware, Rajesh Chandran from ITC Infotech, Jayamalini PS from Standard Chartered Bank, Parimala Gowda & Nithin Joy from Nutanix, Aji George, Murali Marath & Megha Chhabra from Wipro, Reeba Thomas Manoj from TE Connectivity, Mithun Kulkarni & Akshay Chidambar Kulkarni from Myntra, Tina Balachandran from Tencent Games, Rashid Ul Kareem from Optum & Zarna Trivedi from Versa Networks!
We will be back soon, with more such initiatives!