Last month I had the pleasure of visiting India for the first time to meet with the Pramata team there. India was an unbelievable explosion to the senses! It was a crazy and fantastic trip, and one that I will never forget.
One of my favorite things about my company is that more than half of us are females from different cultures and backgrounds. I am a staunch advocate for lifting women up and helping them succeed, not only because I have three daughters, but also because throughout my career it’s become clear that it makes good business sense. An E&Y and Peterson Institute for International Economics study of 21,980 global companies found that companies with more women leaders are more profitable. My forward-thinking CEO Praful Saklani knows this very well and is the biggest supporter of equal rights that I’ve seen during my career. How lucky am I to have that kind of support at the top?
It was important for me to name our group of females with a name that highlights how special it is to have a company with a majority of females in the high-tech industry. We named ourselves “Pramata WoW” which stands for “Pramata Women of Wisdom”. For those who don’t know, the translation of Pramata in Sanskrit is wisdom, so our naming was right on point.
During our inaugural Pramata WoW event for the women leaders, I shared a presentation that I first heard at a National Charity League meeting that was created by Diane Flynn, Co-founder and CEO of ReBoot Accel, an organization that helps women re-enter the workforce. Entitled “14 Ways to Up Your Language Game” the presentation was designed to help women learn to present themselves as confident leaders by using powerful language and eliminating career-limiting habits. The message really resonated with me and inspired me to share it with the women leaders in my company.
The result was an exhilarating afternoon of women from different cultures sharing our diverse experiences. Pramata’s head of India Operations Sylvia Menezes talked about her phenomenal career growth in a male-dominated culture and Anima Gogoi and Shilpa Thambuchetty spoke about how they manage to balance family with work. It was interesting to hear that women half way across the world share the same challenges as women in the USA. It was motivating, moving and one of the best days of my very-long career.
I will make sure Pramata WoW continues to grow. In fact, we’ve already planned our next 2018 event during our upcoming sales kickoff. And, despite the controversy around the word, I’ve decided that I am a feminist after all. Who runs the world? GIRLS!