The past two years have been surreal, with many mixed emotions.
Consider the fate of students switching to online modules, the shopkeepers transitioning from cash to online money; last but not the least – our workplace. From walking to office cafeterias to walking to the kitchen at home. A lot has changed since the pandemic.
Our communication has witnessed a drastic change at the workplace – pivoting towards more empathetic approaches to daily interactions that start with “I hope you are keeping well and “staying well in these difficult times”. Many experienced the work and home loads that women traditionally carried on their shoulders alone. There is a new and genuine appreciation for the diverse challenges that others faced, leading to more inclusive cultures. The landscape has markedly shifted from what it was a few years ago. Today, the focus is on building cultures that can thrive through pandemics and calamities, collaborate, create multiple leaders, especially women leaders, who will go on to build institutions of their own.
There is a greater need for work-life balance. Organizations must make space for individuals to deal with the changes in society. A healthy employee who enjoys the work culture of an organization will have a positive outlook towards it, increasing the retention value of these employees. Yubi has had an attrition rate that is much lower than the general attrition that most organizations see. I believe we are working towards the change that the world needs.
A sense of belonging and collaboration have become non-negotiables in the new world we live in today. Diversity, inclusion, and belonging management have become a requisite for businesses of all sizes to accept.
I don’t believe that any organization, big or small, is perfect with its DEI policies, but the world is collectively trying to make workspaces inclusive. As we constantly try to evolve, I find making the required shifts in a start-up environment much more effortless.
That’s the thing about being a part of Yubi – solutions are not just for the challenges of today, but for challenges of the future too. We don’t wait for a precedent. We set them. Because our people ARE our assets. Period. No measures like ‘greatest’ or ‘most valuable’.
DEI pervades all aspects of life at Yubi. When it comes to language, we try our best to use gender-neutral pronouns in job descriptions. In terms of infrastructure, we have gender-neutral washrooms. Any partner/spouse can claim insurance without them having to subscribe to the heteronormative expectations of the larger society. We were inspired to adopt the Menstruation/Period Leave policy, not just for women but also for those who identify themselves as non-binary.
Discrimination of any kind has no place in our culture; we have a zero-tolerance policy for bullying and harassment. Our message is simple – Yubi is a company where everyone is welcome, whoever you are.
At a grassroots level, biases can only be tackled through education. When people arrive at an organization, they possess different understandings of minority groups. The organization must create a levelled playing field through its policy charter. Then again, these policies only serve as guidelines. Making them a reality requires immense unlearning followed by conceptual clarity.
Yubi recognised the need for flexibility in employees’ work lives and normalized a Remote Work process even before this pandemic. A borderless, boundaryless work environment has propelled us towards diversity by enabling us to reach out to talent that perhaps wasn’t as accessible during the pre-covid stage. With this diversity, we have also understood the need to push on equity and inclusivity in the virtual workspace and lead discussions within as well as outside the organization to drive change.
Of course, talking about DEI isn’t enough. Listening to what employees want, having a healthy discussion and implementing those changes through policies is what makes a company truly inclusive. It gives me great joy to head the DEI team at an organization that looks after every individual employee’s needs and recognises their efforts towards the organization.