From getting their foot in the door for that perfect career opportunity to being impactful in leadership roles to conquering the ranks in the office, women face several challenges while rising up the corporate ladder. They work twice as hard to prove they are half as good and at times hold back to ask for help for fear of appearing weak.
Sudha Thota has never been afraid of a challenge. She overcame numerous obstacles on the journey from a small town in India to a Digital Marketing Specialist at CriticalRiver. Not least because she is a woman working in a male-dominated industry.
“Even though I had heard stories of gender inequality early in my life, I never faced any such discrimination at home. My parents ensured that my siblings and me all received the same love, care and even punishment for our naughtiness,” she quipped.
As she grew up, Sudha faced several instances of gender inequality. When she started working, there were instances when she walked into a conference room filled with male colleagues discussing business goals and found the conversation shifting in her presence.
In another instance, Sudha found herself in a direct confrontation with a male colleague. She was later advised to discontinue conversations when it contradicted a senior male colleague.
When Sudha took her maternity break, she felt pressured to prove herself as capable as a man by not taking time off, even in crucial situations.
“I later realized that no matter how much I tried, society’s stereotypes wouldn’t change,” the mother of a teenager said.
Over time, Sudha learned to face and overcome these challenges.
A friend of Sudha once told her that if I wanted to climb the ladder to a senior position, she should consider changing her career and choosing a more feminine environment where promotion would be easier.
Thankfully, she did not listen.
“I no longer let gender bias hold me back. As long as I don’t stop myself, nothing can,” she said.
“I love working at CriticalRiver and I am proud of how my career has unfolded and where it has taken me. The company enables women like me to build a successful career and fulfil my potential, which helps change perceptions,” Sudha said.