Break the Bias and Build More Inclusive Workplaces

christaswana

By Christa Swana, People & Experience Coordinator (and champion in powerlifting) 

A balancing act 

Seeing more women wanting to have a break in the tech industry, one thing I believe that needs improvement is balance. Technology is a male dominated industry. Only ¼ of the people working in the industry are women. Though this is not something we can improve from one day to another any effort in changing this helps.  

Personally, I’d like to see greater global efforts and initiative around this. For example, educating girls with different circumstances who never imagined technology being a suitable career, that it’s possible to pursue a successful career in tech while doing what they love! 

This month, we celebrate the women that have been fighting for decades for a more diverse and inclusive world. I hope to live in a diverse world free of bias and old stereotypes and a community that celebrates being different. 

Need a lift? 

I would also love to see more women succeeding in male dominant careers or even sports! This connects to me in a more personal way; I’ve been competing in Powerlifting for over 2 years now. I can assure I am in a very male-dominated environment. Outnumbered sometimes by 1 to 6. I find strength in doing this because it is something that involves the mind as well as the body. Sometimes you walk into a platform to lift double your bodyweight. It’s empowering, and I would love to see more women being able to feel the same empowerment as I did. 

To break the bias, move forward, solve problems, have diverse thought, and create new ideas we need to tap more on the underdogs. 

“Diversity is where everyone is invited to the party. Equality means that everyone gets to contribute to the playlist. Inclusion means that everyone has the opportunity to dance.” 

Know your worth 

I noticed on several occasions that when we think about Employee Experiences, we get caught in the same thinking. It always starts with the most common ones like having social time, work from home or even snacks in the office. Some of these things are now becoming a norm. I think we need to think beyond that, and instead focus on building inclusive workplaces, and providing a welcoming work environment for people with different backgrounds.  

Each person’s needs come in different ways that vary from different cultures, so we need to stop and think how we can be inclusive to everyone! I’m fortunate enough to grow up with my dad who is a practicing psychologist and helped me understand the importance of achieving integral health. 
 
This includes mental hygiene, wellbeing, and physical health. We need to value ourselves enough, set time to excel at work and do the things that bring us joy. 

Where we are now 

As with LiveTiles, we are already doing a fantastic work! DEI Is a wide space and change does not come from one day to another. For example, studies show that it will take 135 years (!) to close gender pay gap. 

There are different areas we can tap in. We are fortunate enough to have our P&E team lead by our SVP of people and experience Vanessa Ferguson, who is a great advocate of DEI. Great initiatives are coming along the track, and we also have amazing ones in place, for example being an endorsed employer of Work180.  

To those who aren’t familiar, Work180’s vision is to create a working world in which there is fair and equal representation, opportunities and pay for all women. 

Finally, I would like to share one of my favorite quotes about this topic: 
 
“Diversity is where everyone is invited to the party. Equality means that everyone gets to contribute to the playlist. Inclusion means that everyone has the opportunity to dance.” 

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