What Is A Transgender & What Does It Mean ‘Being A Transgender In India’?
Before working on an article that is going to talk about transgenders in Indian companies, briefly making a parenthesis over the term transgender is fundamental.
A transgender person is a human being.
Between all the different human beings we can identify a transgender as a person who has a gender identity or expression that is different from the sex that they had when they were born, for example, we will use the terminology transgender woman to indicate a woman who was assigned male at birth.
Even if these technical identifications tend to seem really modern, tend to be used more from younger generations compare to the older ones, transgender people are inside the Indian culture for centuries; we can find evidence for example in the Mahabharata, in some edition of the Ramayana or in the Kamasutra.
Important transgenders were part of the different Empires like the Ottoman one and the Mughal one; playing different roles, heading important positions but also being hired for their different points of view, mindsets, experiences, they occupied roles like advisors, administrators, and managers.
Even if we tend to imagine that the older cultures were mentally more restricted, in this case, was often the opposite; the situation started to change only with the influence of the British Empire, creating a sort of “witch hunt”, persecuting transgender people as criminals.
Transgenders in India became “wanted”, they could have been arrested, put in prisons, or “just” fined.
This situation more or less has remained the same till five years ago where different activists started several protests against the lack of rights.
Due to important victories between 2017 ad 2018, nowadays the rights of transgender people are defended more and help them to be a part of the society, including, in our case, the possibilities to work as anyone else inside the companies!
Why A Company Should Hire A Transgender?
Starting from the point of view that we should not make a special list or give an explanation for this question because at the end we are talking about are just people.. but it’s also true that maybe, for some legal or economical point, we could find some barriers without entering in any kind of people’s judgments or beliefs.
One of the most important points/reasons is due to one of the most simple ideas of success: diversification.
If you own a real, alive and stable company you know what I’m talking about, if you don’t you have to think that to own a company even before thinking about the economical part, what is fundamental is the fact that more people think differently, more possibilities will exist for the company to survive and to succeed.
Why? Because thinking differently helps to see the problems, it helps to find solutions, it helps to prevent mistakes but also to laugh about them, it creates an environment where there are fewer judgments and more openness, and this, normally, help people to express themselves in a better way – of course, always, respecting the workplace and following the internal/social rules!!!!
So if you consider creating a real heterogeneous working place it is also easier to think about a really innovative one, different people at the end means, different ages, different experiences, different stories, different points of view, more debates and this pot of elements make the difference between a normal company and a good company.
A Better Lifestyle
Another benefit is connected to the lifestyle: more people are, inside a company, different, easily they will create groups about common topics, common interests, etc etc.
Groups made by different people have a stronger power to attract other people or to attract people who could feel to have fewer possibilities in places with a more homogeneous working life.
Why this is a benefit for a company?
Imagine a good employer has a transgender woman friend who is not able to find a job, in that moment of life, in other places.
This friend is also feeling a little bit nervous about not being able to fit in a place with a more conservative attitude but, this person is also extremely talented.
Knowing about a company able to hire different people for their skills, being able to see different people working in the same structure, is for sure a really attractive point and could make that company more relevant even in the research of other people, national and international, increasing the respect, value and importance.
Millennials, Generation Z, and after are nowadays all over the world the youngest generations but also they cover a good amount of workforce, in India is estimated to arrive to cover more or less the 70% by 2025 (Donston-Miller 2016).
Something that this generation shared is the fact that they care less about the shapes of people compares to what they can share with.
Time is fundamental for the color of the hair no. They were born with an intercultural, digitalized, globalized planet so for them, diversifications are one of the most common things.
Investing in this generation is the present and day after day will be more and more the future, investing in what is common for them, it also means, investing in your future.
Better Reach Among People
Press, magazines, newspapers, television channels and programs, publicity! A company that has more integrations has more possibilities to be all of these ways to create publicity for itself. How? making internal events, for example, investing in specific competitions or working on peculiar projects.
Considering that this topic is spoken and discussed more and more and having a or more than a transgender woman or a transgender man inside could be relevant to own the lights and the eyes of people compare to companies made just by men for example.
For Selling More
For selling more; a company with more diversification could be able to produce different products that could take care of more elements. LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Queers) employers could express what they use, how they use what they could like or dislike about products, talking about that product inside their lives giving more possibilities and in a way opening new o bigger markets for what the company could produce.
Indian Companies That Hired Transgenders
With more than 30 years of life, Accenture is of the most important worldwide corporation. The company is specialized in consulting and processing services.
The company has headquarters in Dublin, Ireland but offices all over the world, just to give some numbers, in India in 2015 the number of employees was higher than 150.000!
Accenture in 2020 has arrived to have more than 500.000 employees with a revenue of over 40 billion.
One of the most interesting parts is the fact that inside the website there is a section dedicated to “inclusion and diversity” where the company explains why they’re trying to invest and make profits from this topic, how to resolve problems and what they propose. They try to hire as many different people as they can without really caring/putting effort into if you are a transgender woman or if you are gay.
Altran India Pvt Ltd
A company that focuses its business on engineering and R&D services.
Altran is another worldwide company with employees operating in more than 28 countries. It is one of the few companies that hired transgenders in India.
They have a well-defined vision where the words “change, and innovation” are in the same sentences.
For them change is not just a word but a constant factor in people’s life; innovation is lived not just as a result but as their journey that, using their words, is something more is like a guiding principle.
There are several reasons why you could take into consideration this company but for sure few of the main important ones are: international projects, the fact that they are a multi-sector expertise company, their vision is facing the future, their inclusivity internal policy, their level of qualification in their sectors.
The company is promoting all over its website ideas like personal development, growing knowledge and skills, training to improve inside and around you. It is really interesting this form of employee care system because it could help in several spheres.
Moving to a more local ground, we find Etasha.
Indian company created in 2006 by Dr. Meenakshi Nayar with the vision and mission to help people to develop skills and find jobs.
They provide training and mentoring programs, ideated with the aim to form everyone who is not able to access expensive instruction.
The company promotes not just interesting programs where to develop your skills but also new philosophies where ideas like positivity, change, new mindset, acceptance are taken into consideration, lived, and expressed in an everyday lifestyle.
When you open, enter their website you could make the mistake to think that could be a construction company!
Everywhere, helping to impress them in your head, you can word like, building, creating, designing, believing, or developing.
The reality is another one, it is a company that based its vision on building trust, protection, safe places where to work, where to feel protected, and develop better ideas.
The company provides four main services like assurance, consulting, strategy and transaction, and also taxes.
They literally write that in the vision a better working world is made to create a form of economic growth connected to sustainability and inclusivity, at the same level, completely linked to each other.
With more than 300.000 employees, the company promotes respect and inclusivity because also they think that diversity develops faster growth.
They share on their website all the recent awards that they have won as a respected company that has put a lot of effort in trying to realize this dream.
Entering the retail and fashion world, this name should be familiar, especially if you are Indian.
In less than a decade the idea of Kishore Biyani has obtained a huge success.
Future Group is the owner of famous shop chains like Big Bazaar, Brand Factory or Central.
How they were able to build this empire is secret, they did not share the formula on their website for their success but, instead, they shared their values: respect and humility dealing with everyone, at any moment; always open to learning, to absorb to be inspired from what is around you; Indianness, doing things following national traditions, rules, experiences, in other words following the Indian way; focusing and working on yourself, because you can not be prepared for the others if you cannot be first with yourself; being open and adaptable, accepting changings and new possibilities; simplicity and positivity to reverse on everyone is around you.
Even for them, the idea of inclusivity is really important, directly on the first page of their website you can find articles trying to promote since the beginning these ideas of “growing together, growing stronger”.
Another global leader in digital services and consulting is the well-known Infosys.
With almost forty years of experience, expanded in almost 50 countries with a huge number of employees, it started with a capital of more or less 250,00 US dollars to arrive in these days to a billionaire capital.
A really successful company that is able to focus inside, concerning any form of inclusivity but also outside, facing the planet’s problems.
They feel part of the environmental reality of our planet and slowly but with a lot of effort, they’re trying to be part of that change that one day, they hope, that will move them to be ambassadors and leaders of a new world, more sustainable and clean, clean from all of those problems that only human beings are able to create.
Till now we have talked about companies who try to create inclusivity inside, do you believe that could exist also companies able to create this feeling outside? Well in a way this is the mission of Kochi Metro.
Kochi Metro is a the rapid transit system that serves the city of Kochi in India.
For them, quality of life, speed, connection, and prosperity are all connected, more places are connected more it is easier to go from one to the other one, this can save time, time that could be used to do something else, like talking, or interacting along the way with other people.
This company has values that are similar to the previous ones but some others a little bit different like the importance of safety, for them providing a safe place is fundamental.
Safe in every possible way of interpretation.
Something else they really care about is the empowerment of their employees, respect, hard work, rewards are all ideas connected to the same job, a job that anyone, without any kind of discrimination, could apply for.
SPI Cinemas Pvt Ltd
Did you know that movies are created without distinguishing the genre or the sex of the people who are watching them?
It seems that there is also a place, SPI Cinemas, where the idea of discrimination is created just connected to one aspect: the ability to make the clients dream more, dream about life, dream about movies, and of course, dream to be back to watch another movie!!!
The company promotes this idea of sharing, sharing a passion for something, in this case for movies. Movies as a bridge to connect different individuals able to promote and bring new ideas, new visions, new possibilities and, as a consequence, new possible changes, for a better and nice future, because it is kind of true, we “always” want a happy ending at the end of a movie!
Third Eye Cafe
The smaller kind of company I will discuss is a cafe with transgender stuff: Third eye caffe in Mumbai.
Really nice place where profession and education are mixed with more intense values visible everywhere. On a wall of the cafe, you can read the phrase, “ be the change you wish to see in the world”.
Inside you can really feel lightness from judgments, the happiness of expressions, and, more than everything else, kindness from all the warm working stuff!
The last one I will talk about is probably one of the most important of this list: the Tweet foundation.
I decided to leave it at the end because it is a company but it is something more, it’s a safe place where to start, it’s a place where a lot of problems everyday are discussed and everyday people try to find solutions for.
In their web page they literally write, talking about their mission:
“We partner with community institutions (healthcare, judiciary, and educational), private medical practitioners, legal cells, political parties, and religious groups to strengthen the awareness and acceptance of trans persons.
We work towards the establishment, conduct, and maintenance of group care homes for elderly trans persons and trans persons of all ages living with physical disabilities.
We additionally grant financial assistance and psychosocial support to institutions performing similar care services.
We contribute to educational and scientific research and development towards the betterment of transgender rights, health, and wellbeing.
To do so, we build partnerships with major institutions such as the World Bank, World Health Organization, UN agencies, Indian government, political parties, and other trusts who are championing similar initiatives.
We provide relief to transgender people living in poverty, and advance and supports government schemes and programs that are transgender-friendly and seek to uplift the socioeconomic level of trans persons (e.g. Swach Bharat Abhiyaan, Make in India, etc.).” (https://tweetindia.org/mission/).