Minna Vaisanen, Head of Customer Success at Growth Engineering joined us for a Q&A ahead of The Women in SaaS Summit.
Minna will be taking part in the panel discussion ‘How to know if your company is inclusive’, along with Rebecca Nerad, VP of Customer Success at E2Open, and Rupal Nishar, AVP Customer Success at Netomi.
Here she discusses the main indicators of inclusivity, how to tell if a company’s culture is right for you, and how to measure inclusivity in the workplace.
Q: Hi Minna could you tell us a bit about yourself and what you’ll be discussing?
A: Sure, thing. I’m a passionate customer advocate and life-longer learner.
I’ve held leadership roles for over 12 years in various companies, worked as an ex-pat for over eight years, and traveled to over 60 countries.
Learning and education have always featured in my roles through different organizations and currently, I am working in the LearningTech field.
During this talk, we are going to be discussing the issues around inclusivity and diversity within companies, particularly as it comes to women. However, it is worth mentioning that female diversity is merely a starting point as there is so much more granularity that we would need to consider when talking about I&D.
Q: What's one of the main indicators that your company is inclusive?
A: This is a great question – as there can be a great marketing blurb on companies’ websites about their inclusive practices - that said, ignore the marketing and look at the company org chart.
Find out who is sitting on the leadership teams, and do you see yourself represented in the company?
Q: How do you measure inclusivity in the workplace?
A: There are several ways to measure inclusivity, however, the most critical areas to measure are the hiring and selection process, retention, and finally, promotions.
There should be quantifiable measures in place for these elements at a granular level, rather than just at cisgender.
Q: As a job seeker, how do you tell if a company’s culture is right for you?
A: LinkedIn is a great source of insight into the cultural landscape of a company. Check out the tone, content, and sentiment of postings by the company and by the employees.
Additionally, during the hiring process, you can also address the question of culture by asking the employer about their values and how these are manifested through the organization.
Q: What do you think are some of the root causes of lack of inclusivity in the workplace?
A: Let’s tell it like it is – historically, there has been an in-balance and perception of the female role in society, let alone in business. Female leadership capabilities were doubted, especially on owning a P&L responsibility i.e. holding the ‘hard decision-making roles’.
Still today, there is severe gender bias for different roles and industries and while these barriers are being broken, the progress has been slow. Although, this does vary; there are some countries where gender equality has made advancement more than others and often, which correlates with countries that have female presidents and/or prime ministers.
Hear more from influential SaaS experts from all walks of life discussing the female experience in the workplace at this year’s Women in SaaS Summit, Live, and On-Demand
8 Sept 2021.