Danone Indonesia : Women With Wings

Danone Indonesia : Women With Wings

How Danone Indonesia Empower Women to Contribute In Balanced-Gender Diversity at Work.

If you have probably read Womenomics, and aware on the recent headlines in business magazines – you would probably already aware that there are significant supports that are being made to create a more balanced of gender diversity at work. In short, empowering women to be able to pursue what they really want instead of surrendering to the Cinderella Syndrome. And yes of course I had been in the same syndrome when I was 25, get a thought on what’s the use of dreaming high at work cause at the end I would love to be a full-time mom & wife… I’m sure that was once most of the girls’ dream because we have lived with such paradigm for many years in all part or the world. And yes, it’s normal.

But the world has pretty much changed, especially ever since my daughter asked what happen after the sentence “And they live happily ever after”. Well I said, “Our world has grown a lot and Cinderella needs to give more ideas to help the kingdom, so she sat at the parliament.” It helps me a lot to spare on the possibilities to my daughter rather than just giving her an option to become a doctor

And yes it’s true,

But there are more reasons why Women with Wings (WWW) is here:

Firstly, Women in business are a hot topic these days, as women become part of half the talent pool exists. Women are at half of the population, not involving women meaning losing half of the potentials talent pool. So yes women pretty much bring more colors to the talents competition.

Secondly, the fact that we are adapting to the changing market where over 80% of consumer purchases are made by women, and over 95% influenced by women. So why not having the decision makers on board?

Thirdly, Gender balance in top teams correlated with high performance. Survey shows that group of fortune 500 companies with highest percentage women in top has 35% higher ROE and TRS (Catalyst 2004). So can we say, Women are the Muses of the business?

And what happen in Danone Indonesia ?

We have what we call a Crocodile Mouth fact where we have recruited a gender balance of 50-50 women & men at the entry level (even starting MT Program) however this 50% ratio becoming look like a crocodile mouth as women are dropping out from career. Seeing the trend of losing the gender diversity, we questions on what’ve been reasons why women tend to drop out along the career path?

And these are some of the facts, which we have gathered:

  • Women are claimed as complex creature.  We tend to have low self awareness and clarity on what we really want. We have internal conflicts with ourselves, with our self confidence and what we want in life. We merely said a single sentence of what we want to be!
  • Social pressure and expectations along with the support network. A Family pressure on role a as mother & wife, a daughter & a dreamer. To be able to perform both personal/family and professional. To think that we need to choose either one…
  • Lack of Role Models in our surroundings. Or maybe we have great women surroundings but not being able to see them as Role Model. We often think that if a woman gets to the top because she’s perfect while I am not. Because she was born in a business family and we are not. And in Danone, we have loads of great women but we never know (and never encouraged to ask) how would they manage to get up there? How would they juggle their life? Sometimes all we need is a piece of life that encourages us and tells us that ‘Yes, it’s possible’ and happens to these women, so why not let these great things happen to you?

WWW is determined to close the Crocodile Mouth by initiating several activities:

  • Monthly WWW Breakfast. This is happening every 2nd week of the month in Cyber building 12th floor, with active CODI members across CBU and we’re discussing about women topics in leadership, networking, and many other things. The last breakfast we have were in May 11th where we have Dorothy Ewing – Regional HR Director of Danone Baby Nutrition, a very inspiring woman I must say. And participating in WWW breakfast surely give me an opportunity to really learn from her experiences.  If you’d like to join in, feel free – this is open for everyone including male  Feel free to contact us via Rini.ramadhani@danone.com and/orAmanda.melissa@danone.com
  • Organized WWW Workshop for women leaders. This 2-days workshop is facilitated by professionals and as well Women CODI, covering topics on Crocodile Mouth facts and Women Leadership discussion featuring Male CODI at the hot seat to get their perspective and Lunch session with more CODI enables you to ask many questions to them or even simply learning from their experiences. I have joined the previous one, and it was such an eye opener for me, meeting lots of great women in Danone, knowing that you will always have sisters at work who supports you and whom you can always talk to   If you would like to join this, please make sure that your name is within the list & nominated by your CODI – if not then ask. The next workshop will be on May 29 & 30. Since this workshop can only be participated by around 20 women, hence there will be batches of workshop for this. Be Patient and make sure that you’re on the list.
  • Opening up WWW Network CODI with cross CBU coaching and mentoring programs. This is as the support from CODI to women leaders in Danone. It really helps to have someone mentor you and keep track on how we’re progressing.  Honestly, I think Danone has many great mentors who are reachable and very close to you in everyday. You just simply need to ASK.I always look forward to my lunch with my mentor as it inspires me a lot

I must say WWW has a pretty long list to do, and we’re delighted to start doing thing that would help to make a positive impact not only for creating a balanced-gender diversity in the organization but at the most – for ourselves.

And if any of Danoners would like to be part of the network – feel free to join us on NEW WHO’S WHO. Feel free to log on to http://whoswho.danweb.danetuse your Hiris username & password and search for Women With Wings Danone Indonesia.

For any of you having questions or wanting some updates – stay tune in here, we’ll be updating you soon enough on what’s happening 

I do believe that this world – or at least my world  – would be a better place when we have more gender & cultural diversity. This is why we are made to be different, to complement and support one another, to work together. This is why human are simply a social creatures.

Personally, one of the best part of being part of WWW is aiming for the day when I can see that I can make a difference to my daughter Athena — when she grew up, letting her know that things are possible and she can always create happiness rather than just having to choose between choices.

And when that day comes, I shall simply be the happiest mother on earth

The Cinderella Syndrome. The other side of fairy tale to tell.

WARNING! This writing is intentionally for girls or anyone who care enough to be reminded about their daughters, sisters, or girl-friends. Published in smilingrini.com in Nov 2013.

So ladies, this no fairy tale, and it might already happen to you without your having being consciously aware on the impact of your decision made for your life.

To warn you before reading this through,

I do not expect all of you to understand this and I do believe that some part of the ladies are just there wondering if they ever have the courage to be aware of their decision, and not to leave before they actually leave.

Every chance comes with the other chance of ‘what if’ you take other chances.

This writing is meant to put you to full consciousness on any decision made in your life is Real.

Cinderella Syndrome is also known as The Cinderella Complex to by which definition in Wikipedia firstly introduced by Colette Dowling as an unconscious desire to be taken care of by others. The complex is said to become more apparent as a person grow older. Named based on the famous fairy tale Cinderella based on the idea of femininity portrayed in that story, where a woman is beautiful, graceful, polite, supportive, hardworking, independent, and maligned by the females of her society, but she is not capable of changing her situations with her own actions and must be helped by an outside force, usually a male (i.e. the prince).

How to know that you’ve had a Cinderella Syndrome ?

If you ever say ‘NO’ to a chance for a reason that you’re THINKING of :

  1. Choosing a job for shorter term as expecting your man to marry you; OR
  2. Considering not to take certain roles with a reason of trying to conceive a baby, OR
  3. Believing that the dream job is always out there and somehow you will be led to it..

Naaaah! Sorry girls, that’s so fairy tales. You have been confirmed as having the Cinderella Syndrome.

First, if he loves you then he will love you for whatever choice of career you have made. If ever that there’s decision to certain career choice that need to be based on discussion of you both — not your assumption. You will never know if happens that your guy just love you the way you juggle all the things in between. You do aware that active women can be very appealing, don’t you ?

Second, baby-making things are not happening at work-time (not that I’m aware of) – if you require proper healthy life-style then be discipline to yourself. Yes you need certain condition to ensure that you live in a supportive condition for conceiving a baby, yet the most important thing is you and your partner well-being. And that start with a mindset and a lifestyle. Not excuses.

Third, Yes dream job is out there definitely. But you can not find it if you can not crack how you need to make your current job a dream job enough for you. Every job and every company has its own up and down side. Either way, whether you find it here and now or somewhere out there it would be fully relying on your capability to work hard and smart enough to get it. Even if you’re born with the silverspoon, you still need to figure out how to keep your silverspoon shiny.

Not that I said that you did wrong.

You did exactly right, to your thinking (or may I say the illusion created by which is not happening yet).

Yes your mind said that it might be happening soon. Yes it might – but then you forgot the other chances of NOT happening. So mind your worries :)

The best of chances that might happen to you is when you decide to do it and make a difference for your life.

If ever that you choose to be a Cinderella, make sure that you know that you are in a conscious mind and happy enough with your decision. And that there always at least 2 options of happening & not happening.

If ever you regret on things that you should’ve done – don’t. Go out and make a change to yourself. Never too late to create your own fairy tale. And remember what Sheryl Sandberg said, DON’T LEAVE BEFORE YOU LEAVE.

Take this advice from a girl who believes that her life is a series of fairy tale-like not because she wait for it but because she believe that she can make things happen. And yes, if you made it to read this thoroughly , thank you! and that you are lucky enough to know that I have my Cinderella syndrome in 20ies and lead me to a 2 years post-birth depression. So yes, I did wish that I’ve done things back then, and made things in a different way. 

So the least I wrote this to remind my daughter and to encourage her to talk about chances and able to mindfully make decision for her life, making her own version of cinderella or making the cinderella story came true.

I eventually realized that every mom wants their children to be happy whatever their choices for life. So yes I want the same for my daughter. No regrets.

So tell me what would you want your children be?