dentsu India Team

The statistics from Deloitte's 2023 Women@Work report highlight the significant challenges faced by women in India. The report reveals that 53% of Indian women reported higher stress levels than men, 44% experienced workplace harassment, and 59% had greater childcare responsibilities than their partners. Moreover, India ranks 127th out of 146 countries in the Global Gender Gap Index and 142nd in economic participation and opportunity. 

What does this mean for women in the media industry? Let's be honest, we are privileged compared to many women in this country, whether economically, educationally, or socially. However, despite the relative privilege that women in the media may have, we still encounter common experiences shared by women across different realms. This interview snippet, from Taylor Swift, one of the most powerful women today and a cultural icon, resonated and sums it up very well for me: The issue is how women's responses to male behaviour are often perceived. This phenomenon, where a woman's defence is seen as an offence, is a form of gaslighting that many women experience. 

This is why, despite the existence of India's Prevention of Sexual Harassment (POSH) Act, women face challenges at work. Women who speak up against harassment are often met with skepticism or disbelief, with their experiences being dismissed as overreactions. They are labelled as 'troublemakers'. 

Inclusion, therefore, goes beyond just having policies in place. It requires creating a culture where women feel empowered to speak up and are trusted to do so. It means challenging assumptions and biases that may lead to women being dismissed or marginalized. Inclusive leadership means actively listening to women's experiences, acknowledging their perspectives, and taking meaningful action to address issues of harassment and discrimination. 

Today at dentsu, as we celebrate Women’s Day, our leadership, with a powerful woman like Anita Kotwani at the helm, strongly believes in creating an environment where a woman can speak up and be trusted to tell her story. We aim to empower her not just one day a year but every day of the year, recognizing and celebrating her contributions.

(Ritika Goswami, Vice President - Strategy, iProspect India)