“Joining Meta was an exciting step in my career journey, and it may be the one that surprised me the most,” Bipasha C., Director of Corporate Communications in India, Meta, smiles. “I was with my last company for almost ten years, and I knew my next role was going to be a big change. Though I wasn’t sure what to expect at first, I went through the interview process and saw how I could make a difference at the company. I was overjoyed to join the team.”
Bipasha made the leap to join Meta in India in early 2020, amidst the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. She remembers feeling “nervous excitement” about how she would establish herself as a leader and ramp up in her new role without going to the office every day. “I wasn’t sure how I could be an effective leader on a new team while working remotely,” she explains. “Ajit, my manager, empowered me by giving me a blank slate to design and plan the comms strategy for the India organization. The open, inclusive and high-energy environment he created for our team motivated me to hit the ground running! Avinash, a colleague who joined the company at the same time as me, also shared the onboarding journey with me and we had instant camaraderie. My early experience at Meta was a powerful reminder of how allyship can enable leaders and teams to drive impactful change.”
Bipasha’s passion to make a meaningful difference for people across India motivates her every day.
A desire to make a meaningful difference
The passion to drive change still motivates Bipasha in her role every day. She explains, “This is about more than just connecting people. It’s about bringing our internal teams closer together as well. When I reflect on my path to Meta and how we’ve grown our team, I feel extremely grateful for the opportunities I’ve had—many of which have stemmed from partnering with my colleagues.”
“As a female leader in India, I recognize the tremendous privilege that comes with having a seat at the table.”
Bipasha’s deep experience with communications and love for transformation have proven to be valuable for the India Leadership team—a team focused on supporting, empowering and learning from each other as they lead. “This focus trickles down to our teams, helping them build the best possible experience for a diverse community of people who use and love our products,” Bipasha says. “Ultimately, we accomplish so much more.”
Bipasha explains that her manager, Ajit, encourages her to have a strong point of view, and supports her seat at the table. She has also discovered how her skills and focus areas are complementary to the work of one of her peers, Avinash, and how they work together for mutual success. She shares, “Avinash serves as a strong ally for me by ensuring success is a shared goal.”
Avinash P. views allyship as making everyday decisions that champion inclusivity.
Cultivating a truly inclusive environment
Avinash P., Director of Marketing, India, Meta, says that joining the India Leadership team around the same time as Bipasha was an eye-opening experience, providing insight into where his experience and voice could be most valuable. “Given our shared goal to establish the company’s voice, I knew it was important for Bipasha and I to support each other. As we were both new to Meta, working together was also an opportunity for us to advocate for one another. Being strong allies has not only helped us develop a close, collaborative relationship, it’s also been key for building a foundation of trust and communication for our teams.”
“Being an ally doesn’t need to be a big statement. It can be making small gestures, like inviting someone to join in when they’re sitting alone or asking for input when someone hasn’t spoken up.”
Avinash stresses that allyship is centered on making everyday decisions that champion inclusivity whenever possible. “Good leaders and strong allies are intentional about fostering an environment where all people are encouraged to use their strengths and be proactive about areas where they want to grow,” he explains. “We need to know each person on our team, understand where they can shine or may struggle, and identify what’s important to them. From there, we can offer our support in unique ways and ensure everyone is heard—whether they’re speaking to us directly, collaborating with a cross-functional team or addressing stakeholders.”
Ajit M. sees his role as an ally and a leader as more of a conductor, orchestrating a team of strong future leaders.
Ensuring a wide canvas for the team
Ajit M., Vice President and Managing Director, India, at Meta, speaks passionately about ensuring everyone on the team has what they need to do their best work. In his role, this means looking at the bigger picture and employing a holistic view to ensure that diversity, equity and inclusion are always top of mind. “From how we approach hiring and program development to guiding our teams to collaborate across products and functions, serving as an advocate plays an integral part of everything I do,” he explains.
“When people have enough space on the canvas, they have the power to do their best work and achieve amazing results.”
Ajit has experienced firsthand how ensuring a “wide canvas,” or equal space and opportunity, enables everyone to make meaningful contributions. “There’s indescribable value in our diverse backgrounds and fresh perspectives. Bipasha is a strong female voice, and it’s important we nurture her leadership and the voices of other women in tech and business,” he explains. “This might look like supporting someone to participate in external forums and industry conversations, having open conversations about tough topics, or complex situations or acknowledging non-inclusive behaviors when we see them.”
He continues, “Being an ally means asking the right questions to inspire people to speak up. It means encouraging the team to embrace their thoughts, to share opinions and ideas and to support different decisions. As a leader and an ally, it’s my job to help ensure we all feel confident bringing our authentic selves to work. No matter who we are or where we’ve come from, we all support and encourage each other each day. Having the opportunity to raise others up drives me, and it’s an incredible privilege.”
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