Babar Khan Javed
Aug 22, 2017

Gender equality more than a tickbox exercise: Panel discussion

Tackling gender diversity requires intent and long-term commitment, a panel of industry leaders said at Campaign Asia-Pacific’s recent Women Leading Change event in Singapore.

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The people who want to lead change should start with themselves, according to a panel of industry leaders at a recent Women Leading Change event hosted by Campaign Asia-Pacific in Singapore.

Commenting on the decision by Google to fire James Damore, Ajit Varghese of Maxus stated that Damore should have led by example and raised the issue in the right forums before embarrassing Google publicly, violating company policy.

"Boundaries are not about one promotion, one project, or one job," Varghese elaborated. "There are multiple challenges that women face in the workplace, and we need to address them specific to the individual."

Helen Duffy, a partner at Grace Blue Worldwide, described the difficult task faced by a female managing director who splits her time between business and culture in an effort to hack her own organisation. "She's spending time creating the atmosphere to find out what the issues are in order to address them in the appropriate way," she said.

Questions from the audience ranged from whether the diversity agenda merely represented a tick on a checklist or a genuine business agenda backed by intent and long-term purpose.

Charlotte Wilkinson, founder of Hello Sister, remarked that one of the ways to create intent and long-term purpose for the diversity agenda is to make the business case and design a training program that picks on perceptions every step of the way.

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