HR Forum holds panel discussion on inclusion and gender equality in the workplace
Raising awareness of obstacles posed by corporate culture for people with lengthy professional experience was the goal of the panel discussion ‘Nurturing diversity: dissimilarity in age and experience’. The event also presented options companies can use to retain staff with a variety of knowledge and a wealth of experience, as well as how to nurture diversity in start-up environments.
Opening the panel, Sanja Miladinović of PepsiCo, Vice-Chairperson of the AmCham HR Forum, who moderated the discussion, and Ivana Karanović of the Karanović & Partners law firm and Chairperson of the HR Forum, noted the issue had to be raised of older individuals on corporate staffs, and that the question was whether firms actually took into account their needs in the workplace and how they were treated during recruitment.
Aleksandra Dutina, HR Director at Carlsberg Serbia, said companies needed to wholly rethink their approach and that the country’s culture, which she believed was not used to inclusion, had to be ‘forced into it’. She added that changes to corporate culture required maturity at companies, starting from top management, and that HR departments had to emphasise the importance of the issue and strengthen communication and build healthy intergenerational relationships.
Olga Svoboda, Partner at Talentuno, claimed there was no awareness at all of the issue of employability of older individuals, which needed to be prioritised as a pressing topic by companies, adding that the government’s regulations were firmly placing this issue on the agenda.
Nadežda Satarić, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Amity, reminded the participants that one in five Serbians were aged 65 or above and that employers had to find a variety of options to adjust employment opportunities to this population, including allowing them to work from home or have access to more flexible shift work. She added that all surveys showed workers aged 45 and over were more loyal to their employers, whilst companies could improve their working conditions and position in the workplace with only very little investment.
Click the picture below to see a photo gallery of the event.