A quantum leap for democracy: Empowering women, minorities and Aboriginal communities through leadership teams – Canada

Shreyasi Singh, Livemint, Nov 09 2015 | To read the full story and enlarge the chart, click here >>

Justin Trudeau was the flavour of the season on social media after he was officially sworn in as Canada’s 23rd prime minister last week, thanks to the heartening diversity of his 30-member cabinet. For one, it was a cabinet showcasing the idea of gender balance, with 15 male and 15 female ministers, a first for Canada, and very far removed from the reality in most other countries. There were also five ministers from visible minorities (four Indian-Canadians and one Afghan-Canadian), two ministers from Canada’s Aboriginal communities, two ministers with disabilities, and 18 first-time ministers. Their backgrounds tell a fascinating story. […]

“It’s about recognizing different acumen, leadership styles and points of view. The more diverse you make your leadership teams, the better your company will do,” says Anjali Singh, senior vice-president (corporate strategy) at business process outsourcing firm Genpact. […]

Yet Trudeau seems to have found a way. “He has taken a quantum leap. It would have taken a few years of preparation to identify and work with the people he finally named in his cabinet. And, if they succeed, everyone—companies, governments, countries—will need to ask ourselves if we can leapfrog as well. Do we need to be satisfied setting targets of 25% for gender balance, or can we reimagine the future too?” says Singh.

We spoke to leaders and human resource practitioners as well as those working on diversity and disability issues to find out if there are any lessons our companies and chief executive officers (CEOs) can learn from the Canadian prime minister. […]

“Trudeau has set the template for what meaningful leadership is going to look like in future. Having a gender-equal, ethnically diverse cabinet in 2015 shouldn’t be considered radical. It is simply a recognition of the values that most young people around the world have on inclusion and equality. I really appreciate the other small things, such as the Inuit singing at his swearing-in. It shows that in today’s world, tradition and modernity can and, in fact, should coexist beautifully. It is a lesson for all organizations—governments, companies and other institutions—on how to create frameworks for positive change. In today’s world, Trudeau and his actions spread due to digital media, and created a ripple effect. It gives great hope to all those who are fighting for issues like LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) inclusion and diversity that a new tomorrow is possible, such as we are trying to do at Godrej with our focus on gender and LGBT inclusion. “- Parmesh Shahani, head, Godrej India Culture Lab, a cultural ideas platform […]

Source: Diversity lessons from Canada’s cabinet – Livemint
Address: http://www.livemint.com/Leisure/LyZx1ekVfsBh6cBdtvy4AM/Diversity-lessons-from-Canadas-cabinet.html
Date Visited: Tue Feb 09 2016 15:28:53 GMT+0100 (CET)

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