Can you tell us about your career and what led you to Kantar?
I’ve been with Kantar for 5 years now. I feel, I’ve had one of the most diverse career paths. I’ve worked in several domains, several verticals, and I interact with and learn from people across the world.
What has been your career highlight at Kantar?
The highlight at Kantar, for me, are our people. They are driven, they are bold, they are focussed and most importantly they are friendly and welcoming.
I still remember people genuinely wanted to know about me (and not because of my good looks). They went out of their way to make me feel comfortable and to put me at ease. This type of hospitality is firmly fixed in our culture and I absolutely love it.
What does Pride mean to you and how have you marked the occasion this year?
When I think about Pride, the first things that come to mind are – sacrifice and courage. Sacrifice of our elders and black transwomen, transmen and transvestites and the courage with which they fought for our rights, fought to be seen, to be heard, to be valued, to be assimilated into the society and treated with respect. It all started as a riot.
I fill with gratitude while thinking of legends like Marsha Johnson and Sylvia Rivera who dedicated themselves for this cause. They lost almost everything, even their lives only to gain so much for the coming generations.
Brave LGBTQI+ activists and allies across the world have continued to take this tradition forward over the years. They turned the riots to celebration because they knew this was the best way to protest. Society wants us to suffer but we will dance and celebrate in their faces.
This year marks 50 years since the first Pride march. what do you think we could achieve in the next 5-10 years?
Different parts of the world today, stand at different milestones when it comes to the LGBTQI+ rights. So, I think, we need to start from the grassroots levels. The first thing we need to achieve is acknowledgement. Society needs to acknowledge the presence of the members of the LGBTQI+ communities around them. We need to understand that our family and friendship circle will be made up of the LGBTQI+ community and acknowledge their rights.
What does a good ally look like to you and how can we learn to better?
- Honest feelings from the heart – a good ally will truly and genuinely feel for the community
- They should be ready to confront their prejudices and biases that they grew up with
- They should be willing to listen before speaking
- They should be open minded to accept and love anything and everything that they were raised to hate
- They should be willing to openly talk to us about our sexuality
- They should be inclusive and not stay away from LGBTQI+ culture
- They shouldn’t assume that all their friends and co-workers are straight. Someone close to them could be looking for support in their coming-out process. Not making assumptions will give them the space they need.
- Sensitise themselves to anti-LGBTQI+ jokes and comments. Speak up against them and publicly take a stand against offensive jokes and comments.
- They should use their platform and resources to defend LGBTQI+ community against discrimination