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IWD: #InspireInclusion with Kimberly Seah, Compliance and Regulatory Risk Professional

  • Publish Date: Posted about 2 months ago
  • Author:by Vincent Yao

​​This International Women's Day, I interviewed Kimberly Seah, a compliance and regulatory risk professional, and she shared her thoughts on how we can #InspireInclusion.

When we inspire others to understand and value women's inclusion, we forge a better world. The IWD 2024 campaign theme seeks to inspire others to understand and value women's inclusion. Organisations, groups, and individuals worldwide can all play a part, and to truly include women means to openly embrace their diversity of race, age, ability, faith, body image, and how they identify.

International Women’s Day belongs to everyone, everywhere. Collectively, we can all help create a diverse, equitable and inclusive world.

1. What does inclusion mean to you, and why?

It means a workplace where people are valued and respected for the work they do; and not discounted for who they are (gender, age, etc).

2. What initiatives or strategies can be implemented to increase the representation of women in leadership positions in your industry?

I will share three that come to mind: ​

First, tone from the top. Some organizations have started to measure and report publicly on the proportion of females at various levels of seniority from new hires, senior management, Board of Directors, etc. This is a powerful message which demonstrates the organization’s commitment to gender equality. As Peter Drucker once said, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.”

Second, culture of mentoring. We all need role models, mentors and cheerleaders to accelerate in our career development. One key building block would be to implement targeted leadership training and mentoring programmes for women. This will help them to develop their unique leadership style without feeling the need to fit into a certain mold to succeed.

Third, family-friendly policies. Many women find themselves in a position where they have to choose between career and family after parenthood. It is important for organisations to recognise this tension and normalise arrangements such as flexible work arrangements and return-to-work programmes to support women who wish to stay in the workforce after parenthood. That said, the performance standards must continue to be upheld.

3. What advice would you give aspiring women in the industry you work in?

Speak up for the work you have done. Communication is also part of execution.

4. What does being an effective ally for women look like to you?

Each of us would have our own definition of success, so being an effective ally is about helping each other to discover what success looks like to us personally and to have the courage to pursue that path.

5. What are some commitments individuals can make to help inspire inclusion for women, for example, calling out discrimination when you see it?

Be intentional about extending opportunities to women; do not assume the answer is no without asking. Also, pay it forward. In whatever way we have benefited from others who have invested in us, choose to invest the same in others.