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In conjunction with the International Women’s Day 2022, the IWFCIM organized a dialogue entitled #BreakTheBias: The Role of Women Leaders in Advancing Their Tribes.

Shareen Shariza Dato’ Abdul Ghani, VP Special Envoy and Stakeholders Relations of IWFCIM and the MD of Sorga Innovation took center stage to lead the discussion together with Shenola Gonzales, CEO, Alevate Solutions.

We recognise there is much to do but we have also made significant strides forward.

Key summaries in the dialogue include the following:


The dialogue participants believe that these factors create biases –

    1. Environment around us
    2. Conditioned bias since at a young age
    3. Bias is developed over time – seen as a norm, culture done all the time and ingrained in our psych
    4. Lack of empathy, knowledge or acceptance

Biases are most prevalent in situations and/or scenarios such as these:

    1. In leaders who reinforce these biases
    2. In the workplace
    3. Society in general especially in multiethnic societies
    4. When there exists a majority of either one gender group or one ethnic group.

Women in leadership position can advance other women either in the workforce or in business by:

    1. Creating programs to unlock potential
    2. Speaking up and sponsoring other women
    3. Mentoring, coaching and supporting other women
    4. Creating opportunities for other women

Some ideas that can be done collectively include:

    1. Training on unconscious bias and conscious bias and continuously reinforce how to avoid it for everyone, especially in schools, workplaces.
    2. Converse consistently and walk the talk.
    3. Educate men and women, boys and girls to not be gender bias. Self motivation is important too.
    4. Identify positive and negative relationships intentionally. Know when to walk away from negative and/or toxic relationships.
    5. Women have mostly existed in silos — families, cliques and the like. Networking beyond familiar surroundings is new. Creating awareness and building trust are critical to establish collaborative support system.
    6. Instill confidence and open to learn new things.
    7. Focus on gradual improvement in breaking the bias.

We then each pledged to #breakthebias and do one thing to make a difference for women everywhere. Especially for women of #iwfcim. Our solutions to  #breakthebias are:

    1. Pledge to purchase from women owned businesses
    2. Continue to support women businesses and their growth via IWFCIM
    3. Continue to mentor women
    4. Support women in their business needs especially financial
    5. Mould and change mindsets from young
    6. Use the power of influence
    7. Contribute to the development of women and build the right environment to grow
    8. Continue to support women-based causes.

Undoubtedly, everyone can make a difference. There is so much that can be done.

The journey continues for a long time to come.

#BreakTheBias #IWD2022 #iwfcim #empoweringwomen

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