The tea industry is one that has been historically dominated by men, particularly in leadership roles. However, as companies strive towards greater diversity and inclusivity, more and more women are breaking through barriers and making their mark in the sector. One such woman is Mrs. Niluza Badurdeen, Director Strategy and Finance of English Tea Shop Organic.
In a recent podcast interview, Niluza shared her journey as a woman leader in the tea industry and the steps her company has taken to create an enabling environment for women to progress in their leadership journeys. Here are some of the key insights that emerged from the conversation:
Equal Opportunities and Pay: Niluza's company established 100% equal pay and equal opportunities for career progression from the very beginning. This has had a significant impact on the number of women in management and leadership positions.
Flexible Work Arrangements: To help women balance their work and home responsibilities, the company offers extended work-from-home arrangements and provides facilities such as transportation to and from work, childcare benefits, and partnerships with childcare centers. This has allowed women to continue pursuing their career ambitions while also fulfilling their family responsibilities.
Career Progression: To enable women to utilise their leadership potential and grow within the company, Niluza's company offers open opportunities for women in any field, including strategy, engineering, marketing, communication, quality, compliance, and more. This has helped to break down traditional gender barriers and provide more opportunities for women to showcase their talents.
Supportive Work Environment: Niluza emphasised the importance of a company that values its human resources and creates a supportive work environment. This not only motivates employees to perform better but also creates a sense of belonging and commitment to the company. In Niluza's case, almost 250 of the company's employees own 30% of the business, which has helped to create a sense of ownership and investment in the company's success.
In conclusion, Niluza's story is a testament to the fact that it is possible to create an enabling environment for women in the workplace. From equal opportunities and pay to flexible work arrangements and a supportive work environment, companies can take concrete steps to empower their female employees and enable them to grow and thrive in their careers. It's a win-win situation for both employees and employers, as diverse teams are known to be more innovative and effective. It is time for more companies in the tea industry and beyond to take a leaf out of English Tea Shop Organic's book and create a more inclusive and empowering workplace for all.
To listen to the most recent episode of the show, check out the CRIB podcast here.
The Mother- and Child-Friendly Seal for Responsible Business launched by The Centre for Child Rights and Business (The Centre) in 2022 is an activity-based certification initiative. The Seal Initiative aims to strengthen the commitment and capacity of businesses to create a family-friendly supply chain and encourages businesses to make meaningful investments in women’s and children’s wellbeing.
For more information, please visit our Seal Initiative website here.