Exploitation of any kind is evil. History of India has poignant examples of exploitation from marauders to traders over several centuries. A few remnants are still visible even today. The steel frame bureaucracy is a great example of an exploitative structure courtesy British legacy. The social structure is male chauvinistic. We passively accept these and live in it. I am not discounting a few social and peoples’ movements that have raised their voices against such exploitation. Sexual exploitation is a dimension of male chauvinism; it is rumored to have existed in powerful and glamorous professions such as cinema, journalism etc. One did not get to see or hear much about these. An odd scandal that may surface usually evaporated quickly as well.
#MeToo tells us quite surprisingly that sexual exploitation is as much a common place in Hollywood though the perception of the west is that of a society long believed to have gender equality. This is far from the truth. Clinton-Monica Lewinsky scandal is not a one off occurrence. Exploitation of women is a global phenomenon. The #MeTooIndia, corollary to the parent movement is a liberating force that has given women the strength to challenge the rich and powerful. Let us hope that this will finally sound the death knell to sexual predators.
#MeToo is a candid hash tag, the one voice of women who are exploited by the base instincts (sad to say) of the male of the species. Nothing is more derogatory. It all started with Harvey Weinstein the Hollywood movie Moghul; and there on has spread like a wild fire across borders. India imported this quietly. A refreshing import unlike anything before without kickbacks. The first signs of the revolution appeared in the Malayalam movie industry. The momentum now has reached Bollywood and the then to New Delhi, right into the portal of a union minister. There is no gain in saying it will engulf the high and mighty in all fields, be it entertainment, bureaucracy, academia, politics, you name it. A crime committed long, is still a crime and must bear scrutiny. There is no law of limitation for old crimes.
Communication is the core of all mass movements. One has to raise a reverent hat to technology (internet) and social media riding on internet that has given firepower to #MeToo.
We Program and Project Managers have taken an oath to preserve ethics and integrity in our profession. We deal with people all the while. Maintaining decorum and treating people with dignity has to be fundamental in our interactions. Projects do go wrong, people make mistakes and several developments in the course of Project Management will create stress, however these are no excuses for any compromise. Being professional means using the right language, respecting everyone, selecting the right words to communicate; and being conscious of body language so that it is in sync with what has been spoken. Experience tells that inappropriate language or behavior, takes the focus away from real issues.
Let us once again wish the very best for #MeToo social change, reaffirm our professional commitment, and make the workplace a safe, respectful and a happy one.
Thanks and Best Wishes
Tanish Mathur, PMP, PMI-ACP
Editorial Content Credit :
Vishwanath Thanalapatti, PMP