Diversity and Inclusion
Tuesday November 5th, IDCC members gathered at L&T Infotech to discuss diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
Anette Papuga, HR Director, Global Operations and Sourcing, shared how LM Wind Power has experienced success with their Diversity and Inclusion program at their two plants in India with a strong support from the local management.
Diversity and Inclusion are quite the buzzwords and for a good reason. Progressing from an overall moral obligation to a business strategy, studies have shown the significant financial impact it brings with it. Companies with a diverse and inclusive workforce are shown to have increased profitability and creativity, stronger governance and problem-solving abilities.
In other words, doing good is good business – much like working with the Sustainable Development Goals, which is also closely linked to this very topic.
While diversity is more than just gender, gender equality is still a major issue in the corporate world. More companies develop strategies to achieve greater diversity and inclusion throughout the group, but how do you implement in countries with different cultural norms and demographic structures?
For LM Wind Power, the initial focus of their Diversity and Inclusion program was to minimize the gender gap in Operations by aiming towards a 5% increase in the number of female employees in Operation, as well as at least one female candidate in the pool for consideration when recruiting for a post.
However, different cultural norms and demographic structures in each and every country makes a “one size fits all” strategy inadequate.
In India, India’s Factory Act does not allow women to work the evening and night shifts on the production floor. A company can apply for a permit to do so, but must ensure the safety of the female employees at the factory as well as travelling to and from their homes.
“It’s not easy. There is a lot of paperwork and considerable cost involved for the companies. But it was an important step for us. The educational and career transformation in India is showing a much larger percentage of female graduates and therefore potential employees. If we have the right structure in place, it is a fantastic opportunity to attract good talent… It is not only about changing the culture among colleagues at work, but for many of these women it is about changing the culture in their communities as well. Female colleagues who determine that working a spectrum of shifts is the right choice for them, are also bringing their families and local communities on that journey too.”
Source: Torben Mølby, Deputy Head of Global Operations, LM Wind Power and leading the D&I program. Read more here
As intended, the roundtable gave rise to frutiful discussions on the subject as well as related subjects.
No two companies are identical when it comes to organizational structure and setup in India. As such, the combined experience constitute a significant knowledge base in the network.
Drawing on the experience of others is a priority at IDCC and these roundtable is a great way to facilitate just that.