Since the beginning, we have recruited both women and men for non-traditional positions, so now we have female fork lift drivers and foam operators, and men who are sewers. We believe that talent has no shape, gender or age. Talent is talent. A diversity mindset has many benefits and we are only in the early stages of this awareness in Mexico.
Lorena Torres, HR Manager at Ikano Industry Mexico shares: “At my previous job, I was tasked to create change for the better at 20 manufacturing plants. A big challenge among managers and leaders was the unconscious bias that surfaced in comments like: “Oh! But she’s a woman”, “No, I don’t want people that old on my team” and “I don’t like working with women”. There is so much prejudice that we are unaware of and we need to understand how our behaviour can be interpreted as discriminative.”
After two years of training and awareness work, we all received a Government Certification in the Equity Gender Model. However, the real gain was actually hearing the difference in the dialogue and sensing that people had truly acknowledged the importance.
Diversity isn’t only about filling quotas
When we talk about diversity, many people only think about giving opportunities to women and relate only to gender equality. So, we have a long way to create awareness about age, disabilities, origins, preferences, and so on. Our diversity efforts are well underway at Ikano Industry. To make us an option for professional growth in Mexico, we are working with our leaders to make a change as we don’t believe in filling quotas. It’s not about having 50%, it’s about offering real possibilities of success at the company.
“After all, diversity is about inviting everyone to the party and being inclusive is making sure that everyone is having fun!”
The process may be long, but I’ve seen many people become great diversity ambassadors and I’m confident Ikano Industry will accomplish this too. After all, diversity is about inviting everyone to the party and being inclusive is making sure that everyone is having fun.
And that is definitely something we are good at here in Mexico!