20+ eminent industry leaders attended the conference to discuss the challenges faced and opportunities available for women at all levels
WIL Forum set the stage and brought to light the long road ahead of us to create a more welcoming and diverse environment for women across all walks of life
The conference celebrated the accomplishments of Women In Leadership programme (WIL) graduates as well as provided a platform for women micro-entrepreneurs to showcase their work
Till date, 106 women have graduated from the WIL programme running into its 6th year
BML Munjal University (BMU), a Hero Group initiative in collaboration with FICCI Women in Science and Entrepreneurship (WISE) and G20 Empower Jan Bhagidari successfully hosted the Women in Leadership (WIL) conference on Tuesday – March 14, 2023, at India Habitat Centre, Delhi. The day-long conference successfully brought the agenda to present, discuss and exchange ideas and perspectives on women in leadership, celebrating the achievements of women from diverse backgrounds, the unseen challenges faced by women, gendered interventions, and women’s empowerment especially at grassroot level, the riveting discussions paved the way for a more inclusive workforce in the ecosystem.
Women In Leadership Conference by BML Munjal University
The first edition of the Women In Leadership (WIL) Forum set the stage and brought to light the long road ahead of us in battling systemic and non-systemic biases and prejudices to create a more welcoming and diverse environment for women across all walks of life. The conference also saw stellar examples of people, corporations and organizations driving this change.
Rajeev Chaba – President & Managing Director, MG Motor India, and Dr. Sangita Reddy – Joint MD, Apollo Hospitals Group & Former President, FICCI delivered the keynote address at the forum. Sunil Kant Munjal, Chancellor – BML Munjal University made a special address at the event. The conference featured an impressive line-up of eminent speakers and panelists, including Chhavi Rajawat – Former Sarpanch, Soda Rajasthan, India; Jayna Kothari – Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India; Mike Clarke – COO & CHRO, Hero MotoCorp Limited; Anandi Iyer – Director & Head of the Fraunhofer Gesellschaft, India Office Chairperson, FICCI (WISE), to name a few.
The conference encompassed four-panel discussions including, first – Women – Shaping the Culture & Economy of the Country, second – Women Rising through the Invisible Barriers, third – Women Empowerment at Grassroot Level, and fourth Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Women in Leadership for invigorating exchange and dialogue. The first panel shed light on the global under-representation of women in leadership roles, revealing that only six countries have achieved gender parity in their parliaments. To address this issue, it is crucial to redefine the concept of leadership and dismantle stereotypical barriers that hinder womens progress. Recognize that gender should never impede success, and that performance, hard work, and merit should be the only factors that matter.
The second panel stressed the importance of mentorship and sponsorship in providing women with the guidance and support they need to achieve success. The third panel celebrated the vital role that grassroots leaders play in Indias villages, encouraging women to come together as a collective force by embracing their femininity and supporting one another.
The concluding panel stressed that effective leadership goes beyond gender boundaries and encouraged women to avoid doubting themselves, many times due to the constant juggle between societal norms and living life on their own terms. They asserted that women already possess the innate capability to lead and should not allow external factors to limit their potential or dictate their aspirations.
The spirit of the conference was further lifted up with a string of inspiring stories shared that showcased how one should pursue their passion unapologetically. The conference acted as a reminder of the transformative power that comes from embracing different viewpoints and experiences.
Speaking at the conference, Sunil Kant Munjal, Chancellor, BML Munjal University, said,“We need more action and less conversation on the ground, and this platform is just a beginning. He reiterated that women are the much smarter half of the population and are inherent multi-takers and excel in everything they do. He further added that to take India’s growth to next horizon we need to have more women in leadership and how women as leaders bring a higher level of efficiency and productivity at the front.”
Swati Munjal, President, BML Munjal University, said, “Women as leaders not only fuel large corporates and big initiatives but they empower fellow women at the foundational level to drive positive changes in communities and society as a whole. We at BMU lay equal emphasis to recognize and celebrate women leaders as change-makers at the grassroots level, as they are the ones who impact the lives of those around them be it by building businesses, impacting communities, and driving social change, all without any formal training and strong support from the society they operate in.“
Swati further added, “I congratulate 17 exceptional women who have graduated with flying colors from our WIL programme and left us in awe with their success stories. Lets continue to inspire and support them for they are the harbingers of change and the key to building a better nation.”
Speaking at a panel, Chhavi Rajawat, Former Sarpanch, Soda, Rajasthan, said, “I would like to thank BML Munjal University for bringing this event to life. As I echo the sentiments of powerful women that are present here today, I emphasize the need to empower ourselves with the right tools to reach much greater heights. It is time we recognize the inherent beauty and strength that lies in being a woman and to embrace it fully. Let us strive to break barriers, shatter stereotypes and emerge as leaders who empower the generations to come.”
WIL conference is an initiative by BML Munjal University underlining ‘where there is a WIL, there is a way’, it is inline with an Executive Education Programme (Women-In-Leadership) launched by the university six years ago. The nine-month programme has been curated to foster new-age skills, helping talented women managers across industries to be equipped with the right acumen for becoming effective leaders and creating a leadership pipeline that is more diverse, inclusive, and innovative. The conference was attended by researchers, academicians, feminists, students, gender specialists, professionals, leaders of NGOs, policy-makers, writers, change agents, and activists.
The event concluded with the graduation and awards ceremony for 17 bright trailblazers from the WIL programme, where the university recognized the remarkable achievements of these individuals. The ceremony was a poignant reminder of the hard work and dedication that goes into breaking down barriers and achieving success, and it left all attendees inspired.
In addition to the conference sessions and graduation ceremony, the program featured a line-up of work by women micro-entrepreneurs highlighting growth, achievements and providing inspiration and encouragement to aspiring women leaders.
About BML Munjal University
Named after the late Founder Chairman of the Hero Group, BML Munjal University (BMU) is a unique not-for-profit initiative founded by the promoters of the Hero Group. BMU was mentored by Imperial College London and is engaged in creating, preserving, and imparting internationally benchmarked knowledge and skills. The university seeks to transform higher education in India by creating a world-class innovative teaching, learning, and research environment. It envisions becoming a nursery for the leaders of tomorrow and a repository of knowledge. The School of Management at BML Munjal University has been ranked 54th among all management institutions in All India in the NIRF Rankings 2022. It has also attained the diamond subject rating by QS I-Gauge.
The University offers undergraduate to doctoral programmes comprising BA (Hons) in Economics, BBA, BCom (Hons), BA LLB (Hons), BBA LLB (Hons), BBA-MBA Integrated Programme, B.Tech at the undergraduate level, and MBA, LLB (Hons) and Ph.D. at the postgraduate level.
For more details, log in to www.bmu.edu.in.
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