Going Beyond Numbers - Bridging D&I with business at India Diversity Conclave - Hindustan Times

Going Beyond Numbers - Bridging D&I with business at India Diversity Conclave

Published on Apr 14, 2022 05:53 PM IST

This annual conclave by India Diversity Forum strengthened India Inc’s commitment towards D&I.

India Diversity Conclave, 2nd Edition, 2022
India Diversity Conclave, 2nd Edition, 2022
ByHT Brand Studio

India, 14th April 2022: “There are many policies that the corporations come up with, but finally everyone down the line has to implement them. We have to have enablers, we have to have some support system. Equity goes hand in hand with diversity and inclusion. You can not have one without the other.” said Seema Trikannad, EVP & Chief of Human Resource & Management Services, SBI Life Insurance as she participated in the 2nd Edition of India Diversity Conclave 2022 at The Lalit Mumbai.

Conceptualized by India Diversity Forum, managed and executed by Sapphire Connect, this conclave focused on Building an Inclusive India while influencing the subtle nuances of DEIB in the Indian context. Hosted at The Lalit Mumbai, this conclave witnessed 35+ speakers, 250+ member companies, 200+ attendees and 1000+ virtual delegates which included leading D&I experts and CHROs pan India along with 16 partners and 12 Diversity Champions.

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Harish Iyer, Head DE&I, Axis Bank also participated in the panel discussion Equity and Equality – Distinguishing their Differences & Acknowledging their Importance alongside Seema Trikannad. He mentioned, “Equality is saying the same treatment for everyone, equity is understanding that there are a few people who have been deprived of their rights, there is no level playing field for them and to create that field first before you actually start the whole process. When everyone has not started the same, you cannot judge them from the finish line.”

This annual conclave by India Diversity Forum strengthened India Inc’s commitment towards D&I. This day-long event had speakers from various faculties emphasising why and how diversity and inclusion should be everyone’s fundamental core values. It is important for companies to recognise and take up the responsibility to create and sustain an inclusive environment for their employees.

Equity & Equality Panel Discussion
Equity & Equality Panel Discussion

This conclave also hosted other leading speakers like Satish Rao, Chairman and Managing Director, Firmenich India; Sanjeev Rao, CEO, Being Human; Krishna Raghavan, Chief People Officer, Flipkart; Chandra Balani, Head – Global Enterprise, India, AWS (Amazon Internet Services); Ankit Bansal, Founder & CEO, Sapphire Human Solutions; Ekta Singh, Global CHRO, AGS Health; Chandra Bhattacharjee, Chief Human Resource Officer, Grasim; Mamata Banerjee, Strategic Initiatives Lead - NTO and D&I Chair, Novartis Healthcare; Anjali Chatterjee, Chief Human Resource Officer, AirAsia India; Dhananjay Naithani, Associate Partner, Sapphire Human Solutions; Shikha Gupta, Director HR - Business Partner & D&I, Schneider Electric; Krity Sharma, Chief People Officer, Mahindra LifeSpaces and many more.

“The concept that each and every capable individual should have the same opportunity to succeed irrespective of their background is one of the most important shared beliefs in a democracy," says Harshbeena Zaveri, Vice Chairperson and MD, NRB Bearings Ltd and member of the IDF Advisory Board. She explained “The rationale behind my beliefs is that uplifting women, people of colour, LGBTQI+, or the differently-abled, the less privileged castes or class - is necessary to counter the marginalization they experience in society. One group or gender shouldn’t be wielding the power to build society - as such a society will be one that preserves the status quo rather than transcends it to create an equal, just and inclusive society.

IDF is not only promoting and enabling policies to make this happen, it is also in the process of creating a review mechanism so member companies can individually and as a group can make a measurable impact on society in each of the areas they chose to focus on. We believe that this is the most impactful comprehensive leadership-driven HR framework for enhancing inclusive growth in the country.”

Creating a D&I Dashboard – Tracking and Measuring one’s D&I Quotient is one of the important keys to diversity. To talk on this exclusive topic the conclave also hosted Sandeep Das, Senior Director, Head Learning & Development/Diversity & Inclusion, JLL India where he added “By measuring D&I through a survey in JLL they have found that due to 1% increase in diversity there is 9% increase in revenue. That's why he believes that diversity, equity and inclusion is a business imperative”. The other esteem panel member Maninder Kapoor Puri, Global Chief People and Diversity Officer, Mastek Group mentioned that “Most organizations are now waking up to the idea of diversity and inclusion. While we talk about metrics and numbers, I think there is much more to diversity.” When asked how do we track the metrics whether it is mindset change or is it something that is driven by fear of consequences of the zero-tolerance policy, she said, “It is a combination of the two, you start at a level of let there be consequence management then it becomes a part of my organizational culture. At least we will begin somewhere.”

Gautam Chainani, Former Group President Human Resources - Strategic Initiatives & Workforce Automation, JSW is one of the Advisory Board Members at IDF. While sharing his experience at the conclave, he mentioned “The India Diversity Conclave had extremely insightful sessions and the panel discussions were equally impactful. The acceptance of IDF has grown many folds and has created a positive buzz around it. The platform gives a huge opportunity for interaction with esteemed D&I leaders, CHROs, and CXOs. People are looking forward to more such engagements from IDF and spreading awareness for creating an Inclusive India”.

IDF recognised that organizations are always looking out for comprehensive ways to further their D&I journey and to create true belonging for their employees. Thus, a unique knowledge-sharing platform was created allowing members to share their D&I experiences, and challenges and also seek advice from their peers. IDF launched a first of its kind D&I Practice Sharing Handbook – D&I Best Practices 2021-22 to make these D&I initiatives available to all and to provide a ready reckoner for other organizations wanting to adopt or imbibe them.

Book Launch
Book Launch

Voted as the top 3 Organizations with leading D&I Practices by IDF members, The Boston Consulting Group, Sodexo and Tata Consultancy Services got a unique opportunity to share their practices at this conclave. TCS has an important program called Champions of Equity and their CEO pledges - To be curious and explore diverse ideas, To be passionate in everything I do and To include without exception. Having the top leadership sponsorship has helped TCS spearhead their D&I journey to such great success.

Rishi Kapoor, Head Management Committee, India Diversity Forum and also a D&I enthusiast himself, was glad that IDF now has a strong members base of 250+ corporates across India. “D&I is rapidly evolving in India. IDF has become the leading D&I voice of India within a year due to the great value addition we bring to our members. From our national and international speakers to leading D&I experts, we provide our members with top-notch knowledge sharing. As we now move into our second year at IDF, we are excited to further level up this journey for our member organizations by getting them access to the finest D&I voices of India and many more globally.”

India Diversity Forum aims to make D&I conversations mainstream in India. To become a member or to request a copy of Best D&I Practices, mail to enquire@indiadiversityforum.org.

Disclaimer: This content is distributed by SRV Media. No HT journalist is involved in creation of this content.

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