At B&T, We are staunch believers that every woman and her achievements should be celebrated, every day and always.
However, unfortunately, the achievements of women often go unnoticed. That’s why we launched our annual B&T Women in Media Awards – to recognise the amazing accomplishments of women across the marketing, communications and advertising industry.
In honour of our WIM Awards, we’re chatting to industry powerhouses; women we should all be keeping an eye on — women to watch.
Today we’re hearing from Rashmi Kalia, group sales manager for Southern Cross Austereo.
The B&T Women in Media Awards are incredibly important in raising awareness and celebrating leading women in the industry. The awards not only help to advance exceptional talent who have made significant contributions to media, but they also act as a vehicle to inspire and encourage future leaders to think big and aim high. Having strong and diverse role models deliver their success stories fuels courage and drives ambition- what’s not great about this??!
I’d like to start by acknowledging that I’m rather fortunate to be working for a business that not only has a high female work percentage but one that also continues to implement initiatives to increase this representation with a focus toward providing greater opportunity for women to achieve succession in their careers.
Looking more broadly however at the equality situation in Australia in regard to women, it’s evident we still have a long way to go to address areas including but not limited to, gender pay gaps; workplace discrimination; the value placed upon female dominated industries; and return to work opportunities.
To be specific around impediments, unconscious biases continue to surround female professionals when it comes to hiring, succession, leadership etc. Let’s not forget unconscious bias is influenced by all that we consume and all that surrounds us, be it rhetoric; accessibility to information; and imagery. On that note, media and brands have an important role to play in helping to shift the perceptions, using their power and influence to portray females and males for that matter in a socially progressive manner.
I truly look forward to a world where equality is no longer a discussion point because the world has progressed to a point where women and men are on an equal footing.
There are some great stories around positive influence being driven from the home i.e. Indra Nooyi (former CEO of PepsiCo) has shared how her mother used to play a game at the dinner table where she would ask her daughters to imagine they were the president or a person in leadership, and pitch their speech back to her to win her vote (a game that opened their minds to the many possibilities of who they could be- a person without limitations ).
Similarly, my influence began at home and stems from my own mother who raised me with strong values and guidance to be open to opportunity; to always think big; be ok with failure; and most of all to never quit trying. Sure we didn’t do role plays, but through her actions- adjusting to a new world with migration from her home country; managing a household; raising her children; climbing up corporate ladder into senior leadership roles; and supporting any path I chose to take in my career journey- I truly had and continue to have the best life coach.
If you were PM, what law would you change/introduce right now to improve equality?
Can I kick this off with I’m not Jacinda Ardern (how great is she?!). If we are to affect and impact change for the future, I think we need to look at what resources and initiatives we have in place in schools to educate on matters of equality. If we are to focus greater attention toward the education curriculum and introduce more funding for compulsory programs geared toward equality, then we are building a better tomorrow for all people (male and female).
What is the best advice anyone has ever given you?
I’ll quote Gandhi here because this quote says it all… “You must be the change you wish to see in the world”.