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Women’s participation in management has been on the rise. However, they face a variety of challenges as they get into leadership positions. Flagging off the way to figure out practises of improving diversity in the workforce and ensuring a level-playing field in management, in a first initiative of its kind, the IIMA organised a meeting of its women alumni in Mumbai, on February 18, 2018.


The event saw about 65 IIMA Alumnae taking part and sharing their ideas to encourage more women in higher management roles and to enlarge and expand their roles. A panel discussion anchored by Anita Bhogle PGP 1985, saw panellists like Abanti Sankarnarayanan PGP 1992, Dilnavaz Variava PGP 1966 and Sonali Dhawan 1998 discussing ‘Leadership Challenges faced by women in workforce.
The discussion focussed on issues relating to gaps between progress, potential and performance on account of gender roles and needs. The ways to help narrow and eventually remove these gaps and what organizations are doing in this context was also discussed. The panel and the participants actively discussed inter-related questions like: How can one help build more effective women leaders? What companies, work places and women and families need to do in order to make this happen? Which stakeholders need to come together to address these issues? What role can be played by IIMA and Women Alumnae of IIMA in this endeavour?


The panel discussion was followed by brainstorming on future activities and focus areas for the Women IIMA Alumnae Community. Given this outlook, the discussion focussed on deciding what activities would provide value to the members of Women Alumnae of IIMA Community? How does one initiate and proliferate such activities? How can the Community be leveraged for creating learning opportunities on Campus? What is the feasibility of lectures, courses or course modules, case writing opportunities, research collaboration and so on?


Mentoring at different stages of the work/life cycle of women came out as an important need and it was decided that the Institute would facilitate this process. The participants also emphasized the need for research in this area to identify ways of making organizations inclusive and sensitive to the needs of women employees. The alumnae also felt that IIMA should take the thought leadership role for identifying ways of ‘ranking’ organizations for their inclusive practices with respect to women.


To enhance alumni engagement, the IIMA plans to create special interest groups or communities among IIMA alumni. Creation of IIMA Women Alumnae Community has initiated this process. The idea of creating special interest groups or communities within the IIMA alumni is based on the premise that members of these communities would benefit from interacting with each other and IIMA would be able to effectively leverage such groups to create more meaningful learning opportunities for faculty and students of IIMA. In the process, IIMA would be able to achieve thought leadership positions on management issues relevant for these communities.

AUTHOR: admin
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