Does it make a difference if there is a woman on both sides of the negotiating table? Do women-led companies create management structures that will allow their employees to rise through the ranks even as they balance professional and family commitments? Most importantly, urgently, we need to address what do women entrepreneurs need to fulfill their aspirations.
Hence, at Kstart, we decided to bring together women founders to create a forum for authentic dialogue to increase women’s participation in tech and startup leadership in India. There are many pioneering women in startups and this community can only grow if we collectively support, encourage and help each other out.
At the StartupGirls event in April, 200 energetic, entrepreneurial women leaders gathered enthusiastically to support and encourage each other, forming a community bound by a strong belief in their vision. The event was the beginning of doing something to explore the long term potential for these women to become the architects of a new ecosystem of women-led technology startups.
Some of the discussion topics revolved around ‘Assertive Leadership’ (Debjani Ghosh, Anjali Bansal, Mukesh Bansal) , ‘Role of women in India’s growth story’(Shekhar Gupta, Sucharita Eashwar, Anisha Singh), ‘Effective Board Management’ (Bharati Jacob,Richa Kar, Swati Bhargava and Shashank ND) and ‘My Story, My Words’ (Shradha Sharma, Meeta Malhotra, Archana Doshi). My friend Lakshmi Pratury also hosted a fireside chat with revered technology leaders Varsha Rao and Kirthiga Reddy, where they shared insights from their experiences.
You can watch the session videos here.
I am thrilled with the participation and outcome from the event and Kstart is glad to have played a role in pulling this together. I’m confident that we are at an inflection point in India for women’s participation in the startup opportunity.
StartupGirls is a small step on the road to changing professional incentives to support women’s success in the Indian technology world. We have received an overwhelmingly positive response from every corner — from senior members in Government to India’s tech leaders. Both men and women have expressed their support and passion for this initiative.
We conducted a survey to get a pulse on the state of women’s entrepreneurship in India today. The response has been beyond our expectations. We hope the results of this survey, as summarized in this report, serve as an impetus to change the perceptions and understand the needs that must be addressed by all of us.
Share it with your friends and networks. Your support and participation in this dialogue matters.
For more information on #StartupGirls initiative, visit http://kstart.in