'Traditional Narratives Of Women Sacrificing Professional Lives For Motherhood Is Changing': Dr Somdutta Singh

'Traditional Narratives Of Women Sacrificing Professional Lives For Motherhood Is Changing': Dr Somdutta Singh

During the conversation, Singh shared her experience of being associated with the government body, life of working women, the risks and challenges they face to balance family and professional life, and more.

Swarna SrikanthUpdated: Monday, March 04, 2024, 10:04 AM IST
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Ahead of International Women's Day, which is celebrated on March 8, Dr Somdutta Singh, a serial entrepreneur, a best selling author, and a former member of NITI Aayog spoke to Swarna Srikanth. During the conversation, Singh shared her experience of being associated with the government body, life of working women, the risks and challenges they face to balance family and professional life, and more. Excerpts:

What do you have to say on Women’s Day 2024?

On Women's Day, let's celebrate the achievements and contributions of women around the world. It's a time to reflect on progress made towards gender equity and renew our commitment to creating a more inclusive and empowering society for all.

Can you share your experience of being part of NITI Aayog?

Being part of NITI Aayog has been an invaluable experience for me. It's not just about the policies and projects we work on, but the people I've had the privilege to collaborate with. Every encounter has been a learning opportunity, with each person contributing their unique insights and perspectives, certain things that have truly helped me on my journey. They have been my mentors and guides, shaping my understanding of growth and development.

What do you think are the common problems working women face these days?

As a working woman myself, I can attest to the tons of challenges we face in today's world. From balancing career aspirations with familial responsibilities to combating gender bias and unequal opportunities, the journey is riddled with obstacles. These challenges are deeply personal and often require a delicate balance of determination and resilience to overcome.

Do you agree that while embracing motherhood, several women sacrifice their professional lives OR is the scenario changing for the better?

I choose to believe that traditional narrative of women sacrificing their professional lives for motherhood is evolving. Yes, some still face difficulties in balancing both roles, there's a growing recognition of the importance of supporting women in their careers alongside their maternal responsibilities. With progressive policies and changing societal norms, we need to empower more women to pursue both their personal and professional ambitions.

Do you agree that a homemaker, mostly women, has a great potential to manage businesses with her foresight on managing the finances and resources of a family and household?

Absolutely, homemakers possess invaluable skills in managing finances and resources that are transferable to business settings. Their ability to multitask, organize, and make strategic decisions is so underrated. Recognizing and harnessing this potential can lead to innovative business solutions and empower women in traditionally overlooked roles.

Do you think that pay scale battle exists across genders?

The gender pay gap is a stark reality across all industries, highlighting systemic inequalities that still persist. Women face discrimination in wages, promotions, and opportunities for advancement. Addressing this disparity requires concerted efforts from both employers and policymakers to ensure equal pay for equal work and eliminate gender-based discrimination.

What are your feelings for India, and how is that reflected in your writings?

Of course, my country of birth, India holds a very special place in my heart, and my writings reflect my deep affection for its rich culture, diversity, and resilience. In my last book, I have strived to capture the essence of India's complexities, celebrating its successes while also shedding light on areas that require attention and improvement.

Dr Somdutta Singh is said to be a bestselling author on Amazon for her book title 'Decoding Digital.' She is currently based in New York.

What's your take on having multiple careers or work bases?

Embracing multiple careers or work bases can be enriching and fulfilling, offering diverse experiences and skill sets. In the current world we live in, versatility and adaptability are the two keys to staying relevant and thriving professionally. It's about exploring new opportunities, pursuing passions, and finding fulfillment in various aspects of life.

When not on a work mode, what keeps you busy?

Outside of work, I prioritize my well-being through travel, exercise, and music. These activities rejuvenate my mind and body, providing much-needed balance and perspective amidst the demands of everyday life.

While your fashion sense too is worth looking up, what's your take on women being suppressed and given taunts on what they wear?

I believe that women should be empowered to express themselves through their fashion choices without fear of judgment or suppression. Clothing is a form of self-expression and should be celebrated as such, free from societal norms or expectations.

What inspired you to start the start-up? Who's your forever inspiration and support?

My inspiration to start my first company stemmed from a desire to make a difference and achieve a better work-life balance. My parents, both doctors with demanding schedules, instilled in me the importance of helping others while prioritizing personal well-being.

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