“The pandemic has widened the scope for more women to get into leadership roles”
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 the M & E, Advertising & Marketing, PR & Communication 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.
Rimo Bose is currently heading the PR & Communications department of TCL India. She joined TCL in the year 2020, and continues to be the lead for all PR and media related activities. Her aim is to bring the brand communications closer to the audience via strategic PR techniques; she also believes that TCL as a product brand gives an open door to branding professionals to create wonders.
In conversation with Adgully, Rimo Bose, PR and Manager, TCL India, speaks about how women have been striking a perfect work-life balance in challenging times, the art of multitasking, lessons that she learnt as a woman leader and more.
How do you think the role and scope of women leaders has widened in the post-pandemic world?
The pandemic was a tough phase for all, but we had seen a lot of women leaders striking a perfect work-life balance and managing it quite efficiently. Coping with the pandemic along with the shift from offline mode to online work culture in itself was a challenge and women leaders across had managed this beautifully. We have always seen women in multiple roles taking up challenges in a sporting way and this is the reason why they have coped up with the pandemic in a much better way. Multitasking comes to them naturally and they stay strong and determined even when under pressure. In a way, I guess the pandemic has widened the scope for more women to get into leadership roles.
The rapid transition to digital, an uncertain economic landscape, charting unknown waters, working from home – how have you been navigating during the COVID-19 times? How are you maintaining work-life balance in the new normal?
We have seen a lot of challenges pop up during the pandemic from every corner – be it financial, emotional or mental. Navigating the COVID-19 period was certainly not easy, but yes, with the support of the family and office colleagues things seemed to flow easily. As the PR manager of TCL India, a large part of my time goes into communicating with external stakeholders like the media. I sought out ways to make these virtual meetings impactful. The other big challenge was to manage internal communications with the team, especially when we had new people coming on board for this, I had set up weekly fun calls that allowed the team to break the ice and it also helped in clearing any blockages that were acting as a hindrance for task completion.
Multiple studies have shown how women leaders performed better during the COVID-19 crisis. According to you, what makes women the best in crisis management?
Women from childhood have been taught the art of multitasking and managing various roles under various circumstances and crisis management has been inherited by them. They very well understand priorities and thus can easily manage the work not only effectively, but efficiently also.
What are the five most effective lessons that you have learned as a woman leader?
The five very important skills that I have learned as a leader are:
- Be empathetic towards other colleagues and other teammates
- Work hard to have the right skill set so that people look up to you as an inspiration
- Nothing can be more fun than enjoying what you do
- Be a leader who walks alongside the team rather than walking in front of the team
- Be a leader who sets examples for the teammates by their own performance
Gender sensitivity and inclusion in the new normal – how can organisations effectively encourage and groom women leaders in challenging times?
Though women have coped up with the pandemic in a much stronger way, yet they are the ones who have also been the most vulnerable to these changes. Post pandemic, we have seen many women downsizing their career or leaving the job and shifting their attention to child care issues, sick family members and more. In order to create a gender-sensitive and inclusive work culture, we need to ensure that the companies have equality based policies and programs. Strict rules should be meant to tackle bias. Flexible working hours, child care facilities, paid sick leaves, mental health resources, etc., are some things companies could offer in order to groom and encourage women leaders.