IIM Bangalore is back with its annual Women Leadership Summit, organized by the Women in Management (WIM) club of the institute. Now into its third year, the theme for this edition was ‘To The Helm’, focused on exploring and addressing different challenges faced by women as they ascend the professional ladder. With an amazing line of speakers, panellists and a stimulating workshop, the event was a remarkable success.
The first keynote speaker for the day was Mrs.Neeta S Revankar. A Harvard Business School AMP graduate, she has been with Sasken Communication Technologies since 1995 and is currently the CFO of the company. She has also been conferred the India CFO Award 2005 for ‘Excellence in Finance in SME’ by IMA India. Mrs. Ravankar spoke passionately on various perspectives for ensuring professional and personal success . She emphasized how important it was for women to lead change, and gave valuable insights on how young corporates today could achieve their career goals down the line by rising above corporate barriers.
The next keynote speaker for the day was Kaustubh Chakraborty, an alumnus of IIM Bangalore himself. Recently retired as Partner from McKinsey & Company, he has over 13 years of experience in consulting. He is a faculty of the Management Practice at Vedica Scholars Programme for Women, a postgraduate programme aimed at preparing women with potential to achieve fulfilling careers. Kaustubh engaged with the audience on people’s notions of leadership and debunked myths on why the status quo is as is. His thought provoking questions got all present pondering on their biases and what they could do in order to resolve gender related issues.
This was followed by a panel discussion on the topic – “Priming for Success”, which saw participation from a number of stellar business leaders and professors. Prominent speakers included Mrs. Latha Srinivasan, who is the CEO of Chippersage and Dr. Do Thu Ta, who is currently a professor at Vietnam University. Also present were Mrs. Chitra V, a manager at Deloitte Mrs. Vasanthi Srinivasan, a professor at IIM Bangalore and Mansi Baranwal, a case team leader with Bain and Company. The panel discussion saw several views and counterpoints being exchanged on what is required to set up professionals, especially women starting out on corporate careers, for success as they enter their job lives.
The final event for the day was a workshop on ‘Social Entrepreneurship’ organized by Mr. Nagaraja Prakasam, an angel investor, who is currently working as a partner with Acumen Fund. Mr Nagaraja left his software job several years ago in order to work with startups and enterprises that have a definitive impact on society. He spoke about the potential of entrepreneurial ideas that focus on people, problems and technology, and how these can have a truly transformational impact on society.
The third Annual Women Leadership Summit was a grand success, and witnessed participation from a diverse set of speakers and students. It cemented its place as one of the best platforms in the country to discuss, debate and promote the role and responsibility of women in leadership positions, in the corporate world and beyond. As the event draws to an end, here’s looking forward to an even more remarkable event next year.