It is so refreshing to see gender diversity at the workplace: Zaiba Sarang
We, at Adgully, have always saluted and honoured women managers and leaders across diverse fields. W-SUITE is a special initiative from Adgully that has been turning the spotlight on some of the most remarkable women achievers in M&E, Advertising, Marketing, PR and Communications industry. In the refurbished series, we seek to find out how women leaders have been managing their teams and work as well as how they have been navigating through the toughest and most challenging times brought about by the global pandemic.
In conversation with Adgully, Zaiba Sarang, Co-founder, iThink Logistics, speaks about gender diversity at the workplace, lessons learned from the pandemic period, remote or hybrid opportunities for women, and more.
How do you think the role and scope of women leaders have widened in the current market ecosystem?
It is so refreshing to see gender diversity at the workplace, whether it is a start-up founder, an investor, the hiring manager of a large company, or a government official. Everyone is agreeing with the fact that women on board is a great idea as they are aware of what they bring to the table and how their EQ and empathetic attitude contribute to the rise of every work that they associate with. This has led to more women representation at higher levels.
What has been your major learnings from the pandemic period?
The pandemic has taught us many things, but one thing I’m sure we’ve all noticed is that we’ve become more empathetic towards people and also to businesses. It also taught me one very important lesson of how it is possible in today’s digital world, where you don’t need to visit the prospect in person, you can connect online, communicate and convert. This helps us to reach out to larger audiences and do more meetings as you save time in traveling.
What is your mantra for maintaining a successful work-life balance in the new normal? According to you, what makes women the best in crisis management?
Staying at home, cut off from the rest of the world, during the pandemic has made me a lot more self-aware. Assigning time to each activity that brings pleasure and fulfills my purpose has become extremely important, as has removing myself from things that drain my energy and are not truly aligned with my goals. This allows me to have a life outside of work; one should try to find ways to balance work and play.
In response to the second part of your question, women are socialised from a young age to adjust and adapt to changing circumstances. This has caused women to become more empathetic and caring, allowing them to devise solutions that take into account every detail of people and their surroundings. This quality is critical because it drives us to find solutions that satisfy everyone.
What are the five most effective leadership lessons that you have learned?
- Listen to understand rather than respond. When you adopt this attitude, you will realise how simple it is to find solutions to any problem.
- Make people feel valued. Establish a secure environment where everyone may come and express their thoughts, opinions, and ideas.
- Be there whenever someone needs you. Try to be present, especially when there are difficulties for your team, so they won’t have to struggle alone.
- Since learning is a lifelong process, there will be days when you’ll also need to pick up some knowledge from your younger colleagues.
- You should always be consistent in all that you do. Always keep in mind that you are running a marathon, not a sprint.
Gender sensitivity and inclusion in the new normal – how can organisations effectively encourage and groom women leaders in challenging times?
We constantly hear about gender diversity and inclusivity, but how often do we actually consider the difficulties that women face on a daily basis? Due to family obligations or maternity leave, women often give up excellent positions or are made to feel guilty for missing official events, which is never fair or equal. The discovery made during the pandemic of how effectively and smoothly operations can run even while working from home provided the answer to this. As a result, companies should allow women to shine from wherever they are, whether in the office or at home, and remove any barriers that stand between women and their goals. More remote and hybrid job opportunities for our superwomen should be made available.