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International Women’s Day 2024: #InspireInclusion

4 months ago by Nicole Rankin
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3 women smiling with purple overlay colour and IWD logo

Why is inclusion important for the workplace?

When creating an inclusive workplace, it only results in a positive work environment; with further opportunities for all individuals, fresh ideas & perspectives and even boosts staff retention. 

At Gravitas, we believe inclusion, alongside equity and diversity, can mean our employees feel valued as they continuously feel a sense of belonging, empowerment and fulfilment as they grow their career.

Following from last year’s theme of #EmbraceEquity, this year’s theme for International Women’s Day 2024 is #InspireInclusion, driving the importance of everyone to take a moment to learn more about the value of inclusion and the impact of gender equality.

We united consultants across our Asia offices to explore this year’s theme, with Practice Lead, German Chan and Recruitment Consultants Gloria Wen, Joycelyn Ng, Prerana Mukherjee and Pradhi Maindola. 

In the video, explore:

  • What is this year's theme of #InspireInclusion?

  • Why is the theme #InspireInclusion important?

  • What advice would you give to your younger self?

  • How will you #InspireInclusion?

Watch their video and learn more.


What is Inclusion?

Inclusion means we are bringing more chances to improve the equality despite of gender, race, faith , abilities and letting women around the world feel supported.

When it comes to including diversity and a sense of belongingness as well as being able to open up in the workplace, it's a lot on making eachother feel comfortable, voicing opinions about the workplace.

Why is it important to #InspireInclusion?

It is important to embrace different mindsets and different mentalities and I believe that to inspire inclusion would bring something new and good to the table. They can look at things with a fresh pair of eyes. For example, having more people in women leadership roles, they're able to give more ideas and initiatives and around inclusion for women in the workplace.

I would say in recruitment specifically, it is a male-dominated workplace. As women, we may sometimes feel a bit uncertain in being more assertive in sharing our opinions or standing our ground.

I think it's important to, you know, inspire inclusion so that in a male dominated workplace, you can be confident.

Encouraging inclusion can generate equality for all women, to let them feel like we are all a union community, being related and supported.

Something that I've observed at work or even at school is that actually that feeling of sisterhood and friendship, that people at work have developed - that whenever any of us has a problem, we can always reach out to the other person, whether it's professional or personal. I guess that's really important to have that bond.

You don't need to be humble about your hard work that you've done. You can appreciate yourself, own it.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

When we are growing up, people can always comment and they will say that you should be doing this at a certain age and you should be doing that now. The advice I would give it to myself, my younger self, would be I always believe in myself and listen to my heart. That can lead to confidence.

I always grew up and I'm sure all of us had the thought process that has girls, we need to make sure we're not stepping on anyone's toes or we're not going against what's expected of us. My best advice to myself would be to not be afraid.

To be more honest to myself. Define who I am and what are my strengths. Practice more, building stronger confidence and seeking every chance to leverage my strengths.

Being not afraid to take new challenges to be a different person. The person we were last year is not the same person we are this year. In the future, as won't b the same either.

How will you inspire inclusion?

I have been doing banking and financial technology recruitment for many years. In the past, women had to work extra hard to get a man shaking their hand for business. And now, and while this has been improved, it's very nice to see things are changing. We are making an impact and encouraging to have different leaders who come with a different background.

Being transparent, being able to acknowledge what's right and what's wrong. And also being able to speak up in front of all our colleagues, be it whether they're senior or junior to us or they're a different gender or anything for that matter. I think in itself when one person starts doing it, somehow the others will also get inspired to do it.

One wisdom I took from Sheryl Sandburg’s book called “Lean in” in to inspire women to fight for their careers, she mentioned as women tend to receive questions on how we can balance work and family life. Here's what she suggested. “Anyone lucky enough to have option shakedown open. Don't enter the workforce already looking for assets. Don't put on breaks. Accelerate”.

Open conversations do take a lot of courage. And for that courage to come from somewhere, we should have – like you keep mentioning - a safety net, a safety space.

I think the easy first step would be creating a safe space to have such conversations.So I think that's something that we can pledge to inspire inclusion.

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