My D&I Journey with:
Principal DEI Specialist,
1. What was your journey into diversity and inclusion?
My DEI journey started a decade plus ago when I became a part of a Women’s Leadership Network ERG during my stint at Sapient. That lead me to understand about DE&I holistically and since then there is no looking back! I always raised my hand to support the DE&I charters in all my organizations after that. As a HR professional, it was easy for me to get an opportunity to work on DE&I. I spent hours reading through DEI materials to increase my knowledge and soon was working in a full-time DEI role at PayU. I worked across 18 countries and learned about all aspects of Diversity. My passion keeps me going and I truly believe we all have a role to play.
2. How would you describe a typical day in your role?
A typical day at McDermott consists of meeting peers across geographies as mine in a Global DEI role. I love the fact that we – the central DEI team are from different nationalities. We bring so much variety to every conversation that each day and each conversation plays a pivotal role in shaping us as professionals. We agree to disagree, challenge perspectives, take one day at a time and keep our DEI strategy in mind before we take decisions. In my role, I continuously work on increasing DEI and Cultural Awareness especially in APAC as I am based in India. I work closely with the ERG’s ensuring they are always aligned with the overall DEI strategy. I spend time keeping up with the latest articles and DEI research as well.
3. What is the best part of your job?
The best part is the opportunity to work with great minds. I look up to so many senior women professionals at McDermott that there is no shortage of role models.
4. What advice would you give to someone looking to move into D&I?
If you are passionate about DEI just keep on investing your time in knowing more about the subject and support your organization in whatever way you can. Be a part of ERG’s, start a new ERG, influence inclusive policies – there are so many ways to begin. Focus everyday to become a well rounded DEI professional because each day counts. Join DEI communities to meet people who share similar interests as you.
5. What are the main challenges faced by D&I professionals at the moment?
You might feel low on some days but just focus on the larger picture. You are there to influence a very big change and it is going to be a slow process. Just focus on the bigger picture always.
6. Name three skills that support you to succeed in D&I
1. Networking – meet as many people as possible, hear them out, understand what makes them think the way they think. This will really help you make great DEI related decisions as you’ll learn to think from other’s point of view as well.
2. Data Analysis – to help you drive conversation.
3. Stakeholder Management – DEI works across departments so good project management and stakeholder management are an added advantage.
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Online Training Workshop
Level 1 – The Foundations to Being an Effective D&I Leader
This online Level 1 CPD Accredited training workshop has been designed for professionals looking to move into a D&I role, or those who have been in a D&I leader role for less than 12 months.
It offers a unique opportunity to learn the foundations to being an effective D&I Leader directly from three experienced D&I practitioners: Gamiel Yafai; Fiona Daniel and Toby Mildon.