Hi there! My name is Naomi, and I’m the Head of Salesforce MarTech in Southeast Asia. My role involves tapping on innovative technologies to help businesses better engage with their customers. Apart from the meaningful work that I do for my clients, I am also very passionate about building an inclusive and diverse workplace. I am honoured to be the Lead of Disabillity Inclusion at Accenture across Southeast Asia.

One thing most people may not know about me is that I’m 70% deaf – something I acquired later in life – and while it was challenging at first, I’ve learnt to embrace it after learning more about the Deaf Community. I no longer see myself as someone with hearing loss, but rather, someone with Deaf Gain! Being a part of this community now, it has inspired me to build the bridge between the Deaf and Hearing. Today I am passionate about helping the Deaf Community do more and be more. That is why one of the best things about working in Accenture for me, are the immense opportunities to drive meaningful initiatives that I’m passionate about. And for me, it’s championing inclusion and diversity.  

 

Creating a workplace for PwDs to thrive

Our Disability Inclusion community at Accenture was created to help drive a more inclusive culture for all Persons with Disabilities (PwD) working here. To achieve this, there are a couple of things we are looking to do. We want to engage the public and create awareness for a need for an inclusive culture for PwDs, enable and inspire PwDs to find meaning in their roles, create empowering environments where they can excel and to provide more employment opportunities for them.

And to do all that, we are rolling out programs and events that will go a long way in helping PwDs feel right at home in Accenture!

This September, we’ve launched a movement within Accenture called DeafTember to celebrate the International Week of the Deaf. This movement was inspired from a need to drive awareness for the greater community and to highlight the importance of Sign Language education for both within and without the Deaf Community. We kicked off Deaftember with a Deaf Culture Lunch N Learn, where one of our PwD teammates shared valuable insights into Deaf culture, together with an interpreter. Throughout the month, employees will also get to acquaint themselves with sign language with 5 different classes covering Singaporean, Australian, Thai, Malaysian, and Indonesian Sign Languages. Not to forget, employees can take part in a fundraiser in the form of a virtual trivia night to raise funds for the Singapore Association for the Deaf. So far, the folks in Accenture, including our leaders, have shown great interest in wanting to learn how to be inclusive towards the Deaf Community!

Here's a photo of our people in one of the sign language classes held during Deaftember!

Aside from Deaftember, we have launched other new initiatives in Accenture, like the PwD Advocacy program which helps PwDs feel better represented during performance evaluation times. The self-identification program allows PwDs to voluntarily self-identify their disabilities so we as a firm can better support them. Across the globe, Accenture has also introduced Accessibility Centres where PwDs can gain access to any of the technologies and tools that they may need to do their job – be it hearing, vision or mobility needs.

These are just some of the great and exciting things we’re doing so far! We’re just beginning, and there will be many more initiatives and programs that we’ll be introducing to create a barrier-free and inclusive workplace for all. 

 

Inclusivity and diversity ingrained in our culture

You may ask, why am I so passionate about inclusion and diversity? To me, it can never be understated how important it is to be inclusive and diverse in the workplace. By creating a culture that is inclusive towards people from different backgrounds and lived experiences, both Accenture and these individuals stand to grow to greater heights. And above all, it’s the right thing to do as human beings!

So, my message to all PwDs aspiring to join the Accenture family is this: we welcome you and don’t be afraid to be who you are here at Accenture! We have a super helpful community here in Accenture and will provide the support to help you reach your full potential, with many opportunities for you to grow. So it goes without saying that if you need any assistance in the interview process, Accenture is happy to provide what you need – be it interpreters, or note takers, so don’t be afraid to ask!  

Ultimately, what I want is not only to make Accenture a “Deaf-friendly” place where people like me can grow in their careers, but also to inspire PwDs to look at Accenture as a great place to work, and a place where we can create change and impact for their communities too!

 

No matter who you are, be ready to be empowered to your fullest potential at Accenture! Join us today!

 

 

Disclaimer: This content is provided for general information purposes and is not intended to be used in place of consultation with our professional advisors. This document makes reference to marks owned by third parties. All such third-party marks are the property of their respective owners. No sponsorship, endorsement or approval of this content by the owners of such marks is intended, expressed or implied.

Copyright © 2021 Accenture. All rights reserved. Accenture and its logo are registered trademarks

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Naomi Rajendram

Head of Salesforce MarTech, SEA

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