“Gen­der di­ver­sity is just smart eco­nomics”

India Today - - EMPOWERMENT - As told to Ur­sila Ali

As of March 31, 2016, 25 per cent of the BSE-listed com­pa­nies and 11 per cent of the NSE-listed com­pa­nies did not have a sin­gle woman on their board, de­spite the reg­u­la­tions. I feel, as a coun­try, we have made great strides (about 40 per cent of the bank­ing as­sets in the coun­try are now con­trolled by women) but still have a long way to go. The change we want to see will come when or­gan­i­sa­tions not only work to­wards more re­cruit­ment, but also bet­ter re­ten­tion of women. Gen­der di­ver­sity is just smart eco­nomics.

To quote Sh­eryl Sand­berg, “We stand on the shoul­ders of the women who came be­fore us, women who had to fight for the rights that we now take for granted.” So, it is our duty to do the same for other women now. Women lead­ers by de­fault be­come an ecosys­tem that sup­ports other women to reach the top, sim­ply by be­ing the mo­ti­va­tional fac­tor. My first tip for women would be to find a part­ner who un­der­stands that main­tain­ing a work-life bal­ance is as much his re­spon­si­bil­ity as yours. Sec­ond, use your time ef­fec­tively and ef­fi­ciently. I re­ply to emails and take calls on route to work. It is im­por­tant to com­part­men­talise your life; don’t carry your work stress to your home or your home stress to work. Lastly, it is im­por­tant to let go of the guilt. I feel some­times women are re­spon­si­ble for hold­ing them­selves back. We feel guilty that we are not de­vot­ing all our time to our chil­dren or hus­band.

Zarin daruwala 54 CEO, Stan­dard Char­tered Bank In­dia Mum­bai

au­gust 2012

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