On Friday 7th November The Chapman Consulting Group, in conjunction with the EMEA BeathChapman Team in Istanbul, co-hosted their 2nd and 3rd HR Leaders’ Networking Sessions in Turkey. The theme of the discussions was Diversity & Inclusion, and its impact on business at all levels, which stimulated valuable discussions and sharing on what co-hosts, Coca Cola and Peak Games, as well as other attendees, are doing in this space. With an audience representing a wide range of sectors, those in attendance represented a number of both large and small firms including Baxter, Deloitte, Estee Lauder, GE, LeGrand, L’Oreal, Merck, Mitsubishi, Nestle, Unilever, Sandoz, and Stryker.
One of the highlights was a presentation by Nurhayat Ulucan, HR Director for LeGrand, in which she shared invaluable experiences and input on improving D & I. Over the past several years, Nurhayat has been working extremely hard to achieve a gender balance in her organisation, primarily at a blue-collar level, in what can best be described as a male-dominated sector. One notable feat has been a programme to introduce female electricians to the company. After an unsuccessful first attempt, she has altered the programme, and she’s hopeful it will be a success early in the New Year. Her passion for gender equality, combined with her uncompromising standards, will no doubt enable Nurhayat to achieve her desired results.
Burcu Cantekinler, HRBP Finance, HR and Legal with Unilever, also shared some innovative practices the company has been implementing over the years, including flexi-hours, maternity/paternity leave, mentoring programmes, all designed to attain the ‘right’ gender balance. Another success story was shared by healthcare company, Eczacibasi Baxter, via a presentation from Asli Dizdar, HR Director. Clearly a passionate HR Leader, Asli provided a detailed look into the many programmes she has been developing, resulting in several ‘wins’ on many levels. Thanks to a number of long term programmes Asli has implemented, over 70% of current employees are female, from the leadership team right through the organisation.
Andrew Bailey, Managing Partner of BeathChapman EMEA, was pleased to see how far many organisations have come, in terms of providing a sound ‘diverse and inclusive’ environment for their employees. “It is mostly the large global players who lead the pack in this area; however, it was pleasing to see some of the larger local firms also embracing a diverse work culture for their employees,” said Bailey. Following a week of HR Networking sessions across Europe, Tim Rayner, a Director of The Chapman Consulting Group based in Spain, was also impressed with the progress made in the Turkish market on this topic. “The calibre of Senior HR talent in Istanbul was evident in these sessions, and the effort that has gone into some of these D & I programmes is purely first class,” added Rayner.
Special thanks goes to Tapaswee Chandele, HR Director for Coca-Cola Turkey, Caucasus, Central Asia Republics, Eurasia and Africa, for a wonderful presentation, and Eda Azaroglu, HR Director for Peak Games, for accommodating us in their excellent conference/academy facilities. We look forward to our next Istanbul HR Leaders’ Networking Session, which will be conducted in February 2015.
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