Reckitt Benckiser’s ‘DARE’ platform with its powerful gender diversity and women empowerment initiatives, led it to win the ‘Best Gender Practices’ award, at the CFA Society’s 14th annual ceremony on August 30th at Pearl Continental, Karachi.

‘DARE’ is definitely a winner as it focuses on various purpose driven themes that aim to transform women into more daring individuals by empowering them through both external and internal organisational practices.

With a vision to achieve that, RB Pakistan launched ‘DARE’ as a platform to Develop, Attract, Retain and Engage talented women. As part of the internal empowerment series, ‘lean in’ circles were introduced, revolving around key themes such as, Not Afraid, Breaking Stereotypes, Sexual Harassment Training, Bold for Change and Lean In Together – the ‘He for She’ Campaign.

These Lean in circles served as a networking opportunity for women with the purpose to support each other and learn from one another. With each lean in a circle having a different take on things, this exercise proved to be a rather innovative and interesting one as in some cases, especially for lean in together, ‘He-She’ campaign – where females dared their male colleagues to perform the actions that were generally considered stereotypical for women to do. Hence creating awareness among men about the dual careers that women have to manage and the things they take for granted.

Along with this, RB also launched a mentorship program that focused on women in senior positions supporting talented women to overcome hurdles to progress. The themes for mentoring meetings involved having powerful conversations, networking, balancing responsibilities, dealing with changed perception, dual careers, work-life balance, child care, building relationships with key people and much more, making it easier for women to be better equipped with what’s expected of them.

To ensure that women feel welcomed and not out of place after coming back from long maternity leaves, part of this program was also having policies that help these women get back in the game and allow them to occasionally work from home so they can balance work and home, in a manner most suitable for them.

Last but certainly not the least, under the DARE umbrella, DARE Academy was also launched, a platform that expands the folds of DARE to the external community by targeting young girls who are talented and ambitious but lack the opportunities to grow.

DARE is a Reckitt Benckiser initiative to encourage more and more women to step into the workforce and by getting recognized on many platforms, it can serve as a best practice for many organizations to follow.