Lean In Singapore & Women Leadership in Asia with Helen Duce & Uma Balasingam

Lean In Singapore & Women Leadership in Asia with Helen Duce & Uma Balasingam
Helen Duce and Uma Thana Balasingam from Lean In Singapore joined us to discuss the movement, the challenges of women's progression in workplaces & how we can overcome our unconscious bias towards a world of equal representation.

Helen Duce and Uma Thana Balasingam from Lean In Singapore joined us to discuss the movement that helps to progress the challenges of women leadership in the workplace. We discussed how Lean In Singapore provide help and coverage to women in their career progression and also its interaction with the other chapters across Asia. In the same conversation, Helen and Uma highlighted the unconscious biases and challenges which women faced in their career.

Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included):

  • Helen Duce (@helengreenocean , LinkedIn), Managing partner Green Ocean Group & Uma Thana Balasingam (@umathana , LinkedIn) VP, Channel & Sales of Riverbed Technology and both are co-founders of LeanIn SG. [0:38]
    • How did you start your career? (With Helen [1:20] and Uma [5:28])
    • What is Helen’s role & coverage in Green Ocean Group [2:22] & Uma’s role and coverage in Riverbed Technology [6:10]?
    • Throughout your career journey, what are the interesting career lessons learnt? (With Helen [3:07] and Uma [6:49]? 
  • Lean In SG (@leaninSG, Facebook, LinkedIn) and Women Leadership in Asia [8:46]
    • As an introduction, can you describe the concept of Lean In movement pioneered by Sheryl Sandberg in her famous book and TED Talk (who happens to be COO of Facebook)? [9:10]
    • How did you end up starting the chapter of Lean In Singapore together? [10:18]
    • What are the key objectives of the Lean In movement globally and then specifically in Singapore? [13:54]
    • What are the activities do the chapter typically get together and does the chapter also extend its invitation to other chapters within Asia? [16:04]
    • What are the key challenges for women in the workplace comparing US & Europe against Asia? [18:54]
    • What are the unconscious biases that we need to watch out pertaining in our workplaces when it comes to interactions with women? [23:16]
    • What are your advice to women in how they should approach practical things like taking on a more senior role or asking for a raise? [26:15]
    • How does men able to helping women to advance from home to the workplace? [28:09]
    • In your experience within Asia, do you see that women encounter the same kind of challenges as their counterparts in the US and Europe? Are there specific cultural differences? [30:24]
    • We have seen male CEOs, VCs and senior executives being outed for sexual harassment and even assault in some case coming from Silicon Valley, what are your perspectives on this? [34:22]
    • Why an honest dialogue between men and women in an area with psychological safety matters in such difficult conversations. [37:58]
  • Closing [38:54]

Podcast Information:

The show is hosted by Bernard Leong (@bleongcw & my weibo account)and are sponsored by Ideal Workspace (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) with their new Altizen Desk on Indiegogo (Twitter, Facebook, Medium). Also check out Ideal Workspace’s new standing desk, Altizen and sign up for their mailing list. Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, “The Beginning” from Red Cliff Soundtrack.