Thursday, July 02, 2015

Traditions, stereotypes..? Women driving business histroically associated with Male Bastion.

“Tradition becomes our security,and when the mind is secure it is in decay.”Jiddu Krishnamurti

Earlier this year in May, the Economic Times Magazine section featured an article on how more and more women taking up jobs in sectors considered male strongholds in India.. And it had a quote attributed to me-amongst some outstanding examples of few women who have been breaking the glass ceiling & some of the challenges that they have faced.

As a person who has now been in the industry for over 30yrs ,& fortunate to have had a ringside view of the changing economies, I personally feel that most of the issues raised-are perhaps going to be moot points/redundant- as we are often prone to forgetting the context and are quick to generalize the sterotypes!

In the next 5-6yrs, I will be really surprised if women are not increasingly taking leadership roles. Merit really cannot be ignored -in these days of analytics & increased metrics :)!

Here are my thoughts-on a few things trending in parallel:

-Change in the power of choice- from the employer to the employee: The industrial economy -had given way to the intellectual economy (the 90s saw the emergence of the IT/ITES & the services economy), and is perhaps being overtaken by the interconnected economy (thanks to internet, globalisation etc). Already we see lesser mortality of companies /employers -and employees having to take charge of their own careers and the onus there of.

The nature of jobs itself has changed, and many new roles have emerged in the past decade. Sunrise industries have been employing folks who have transplantable skills, so, the tenure is no longer as importance as competency, or the ability to manage change. No longer is quantity of years of experience as relevant or the quality of the experience. Hence I feel seniority is passé'. And as a result if promotions were earlier given to those who lasted longer in the system, it is the meritorious that make it thru the glass ceiling

The generation that has entered the work force in India post liberalization-has seen large scale employment in the services-and the financial gain (& independence) has made the society appreciate the double income family, and accept it. And there are enough role models of well educated and financially sufficient women pursuing professional careers and high level positions, putting personal /work life balance on lesser priority.

Especially so-in the war for talent, companies are increasingly conscious of the gender diversity (out of necessity and not merely giving lip service), and are able to find enough talent pipeline of potential leaders by encouraging flexible work schedules, improved parental leave policies, and opportunities for women to rejoin the workplace after short interruptions.

Anyway with increasing use of technologies...the delta growth/ dependence of the male bastions -that perhaps emphasis on brute power (manufacturing, engineering hardware, telecom) is likely to be tapering off. 

With more women at all levels -and even if organizations continue to have pyramidical structures, they have a great pipeline of gender diversity for posterity! And in the increasingly trend of career ladders giving way to lattices (with matrix organization and remote location employees), there would be no glass ceilings in future!!

And yes, isn't it time we stopped going ga-ga over one day dedicated to Mother's day? Ironical though the above article did coincide so!

Would love your thoughts.

Finding "people for jobs" vs "jobs for people"

Anytime at all,
Anytime at all,
Anytime at all,
All you've gotta do is call
And I'll be there.
Those of us born in the 60s..will easily resonate to the Beatles number!!
However in today's world, does the modern recruiter have the luxury of 'being there'? How I wish it was true :(!
Most jobseekers do not see understand that the business of 'finding people for jobs' could be different from 'finding jobs for people'!
And especially so, in today's VUCA world-where the expectations are very specific! The margin of error is very low. And the clients are expecting us to showcase the best –who are available to join at really short notice.
I will leverage on the candid post made by the NPA Worldwide President Dave Nerz, on 3 reasons jobseekers should not expect a return call from recruiters,  using the analogy of a BMW expert and a Mercedes enthusiast!!
Dave sets expectations for candidates to be realistic, as ’most focused contingent recruiters cannot and will not be accommodating to every candidate.’
-Recruiters have limited time. Are you asking the recruiter to spend time outside of a core area of focus? Not returning your call is a calculated business decision.
-You want to CHANGE careers. Are you telling a recruiter that you want to change careers? If so, consider this: recruiters help people move into roles they are very qualified to do and where there is a proven track record of results. They are not typically career coaches helping you move from one profession to another. If they see a call as a coaching session, they will not return it.
-Your resume is on too many job boards. If your “car” is already being sold online and listed in every enthusiast’s magazine, then the recruiter needs to move on to candidates that are not as well known. Recruiters do not get paid a fee when employers can grab your resume off many different job boards. If you have not established a win-win relationship with a recruiter, they will not take the time to even present you to a client. They need to know you are talented, looking for a job in an area where you excel and not posted on every job board out there. If your resume is all over the web, you may not get a return call.
My firm Options Executive Search specializes in hiring middle & senior management professionals for MNCs setting up Indian operations, and focus on  identifying the right professionals with international experience, and Indian roots..the ‘returning/returned Indians”. And so all our work is mandated by the specific growth plans of our clients!
We work closely with clients in IT product space, Manufacturing /Automotive, and Infrastructure industry, and are privy to the mandates aggregated by our extended network of NPA Worldwide of over 500 associates-globally-across 29 countries.
So, in the case I do not return your call, as soon as you expect, please understand I am perhaps juggling some urgent critical assignments and closing in-and just can't afford to take my eyes off the task I am focussed on !! Please feel free to mail me ( [email protected]). You can be sure I will be haunting you, as soon as I find your profile interesting to my clients!
Btw.To cater to the business of finding ‘jobs for people’, I have a dedicated service vertical, – a (paid) career coaching service. There is only so much one can do-in a 30 minute session. And so, I also do a day long workshop every month –Turbocharge YOUR Career series- to help one become more in control of their career- by getting FOUND by prospective employers. Come over and schedule a consulting call at a mutually convenient time!!
Let me know how I can help!!