Our society lives by Stereotypes! Now, that we acknowledge that the world & society is constantly evolving, I had thought that by now in the professional world the story would be different.
As I was growing up, have heard of various stereotypes even in the professional world like for the role of a secretary , a woman would be best; teaching profession is good for women since they can take care of families well due to better work life balance; a guy is the primary bread earner in a family – a woman’s income is only supplementary ; its okay for a man to be aggressive, if a woman asserts herself, she is aggressive which is not acceptable etc….
While some of these still remain or their degrees vary….there are many more stereotypes that keep coming in ,to add to the professional potpourri!
Very recently, a close friend shared some new ones… I had not heard of them before nor did such thoughts ever cross my mind.
In the Indian context, one strong one was that you must write a book or turn an author only once you have decided to hang your boots in the corporate world either thru superannuation or even before; Another one, if you wrote a book during your corporate career, it was an indication that you wanted to hang your boots & become an academician!!!! I found these really funny. My friend too, that’s why she discussed these with me ☺☺☺.
In my view, any practising manager may want to share his/her experiences for the benefit of others ( students, practitioners, academicians etc) by writing a book. Infact, they are trying to create a body of knowledge which will be a ready reckoner & help everyone immensely. They straddle between their highly demanding jobs & yet have the zeal to contribute.I can’t understand the connection between authoring a book & retirement or the label of turning an academician!!! Can you?
The society or the world at large has strong perceptions which have become stereotypes & we try to label people & fix them into frames.What I told my friend, is that I find such practising managers as versatile & multi talented who rise above their so called professional defined roles to make an impact. They are rare & need to be cherished & encouraged!Point to ponder & act- Can we drop the labels, please? & let people be!
About the Author: Aparna Sharma
“HR Practitioner, Board Member, Academician, Best Selling Author & Motivational Speaker “
After completing her post graduation in Personnel Management & Industrial Relations (PM & IR) from Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai, Aparna made her foray into the corporate world through Nocil and moved into different roles in the HR function in organisations like Monsanto, Novartis, UCB, Deutsche Bank, Lafarge & Greaves Cotton. In her diverse roles, Aparna has successfully been a learning partner, mentor and coach to leaders, leadership teams and organisations to build competencies, learning abilities and nimbleness for achieving purposeful performance.
She has recently been awarded Doctorate in Human Resources from California Public University, U.S.A. Her research is very contemporary & on an interesting topic of “Future of Work & Workplace-2025”.
An alumnus of IOD, Aparna was an Independent Director on the Board of T.S Alloys Ltd.(100% subsidiary of Tata Steel) & now on the Board of Rajratan Global Wire Limited. With 24 years of experience in HR across different verticals, she is currently contributing as a Board Mentor with various boards & as an advisor to various corporates in areas such as Strategic Leadership, Planning, Organization Behaviour & Strategy for Board Room Effectiveness, Organization Culture & Development, Leadership Relationships, Temperamental Traits & Derailment Factors within Boards etc.
She has been felicitated with the “ Best Employee Experience Personality of the Year 2020 ”, “ Indian HR Champion of the Year-2019”, “ Indian Business Woman of the Year 2019” award by MORPEHUS Enterprises, “ILDC-AMP Woman Excellence Award 2019 for Learning & Development”, “Best HR Trainer” by ICBM-AMP Academic Excellence Awards 2018, “Woman Achiever Award 2018” by Indian Women Convention (IWC),“MTC Global Outstanding Corporate Award for Excellence in Human Resources” during the 6th Annual Global Convention –SANKALP 2016, “Women Achievers Award” by World HRD Congress & Institute of Public Enterprise in 2013, “HR Super Achiever Award” by Star News at the 20th World HRD Congress 2012 amongst many others.
Winner of many accolades like ‘Women Leadership Award’ for BFSI (Banking, Financial Services & Insurance) Awards by Institute of Public Enterprise (IPE), Hyderabad, ‘Achiever of Excellence Award’ by Bombay Management Association (BMA) & Indian Society for Training & Development (ISTD, Mumbai), she is regularly featured as one of the top women HR Leaders in the country & quoted as a Thought Leader in HR. Under her leadership at Lafarge, many in-company Global Awards such as ‘Digilearn Championship Trophy’ & ‘WAVE’ (Women Adding Value & Excellence) have been received besides external recognitions like CLO (Chief Learning Officer’s) Award consecutively for 3 years.
Beyond her corporate role as an HR Leader, Aparna also dons the hat of HR contributor through her associations with Indian Society of Training & Development (ISTD), All India Management Association (AIMA), National Institute of Personnel Management (NIPM), National HRD Network, and Sumedhas, where she actively participates in disseminating her acquired knowledge and build the HR fraternity by creating future leaders. She was the Honorary Treasurer of National HRD Network, Mumbai Chapter (2012-2015) and a member of the Executive Committee. She was also elected as member of the National Executive Board of NHRDN for the period 2013-2015.
Aparna is a celebrated author of 2 best selling books – “Reality Bytes-The Role of HR in Today’s World”, (English & Hindi) Foreworded by Dr. T.V Rao & “ Between U & Me” , Foreworded by PadmaBhushan PadmaShree Dr. Devi Shetty.
To know more about Aparna, visit: – www.aparnasharma.in
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