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Women Leadership Fellows Program Cohort 2 Graduates!

Jehan | Jul 19 2022
Women Leadership Fellows Program Cohort 2 Graduates!

Our second cohort of the Women Leadership Fellows Program has graduated with flying colors!

Throughout a rigorous program, there are bound to be several ups and downs – moments that teach and moments that give you the opportunity to teach.

For the 20 members of Katalyst Labs’ 2nd Women Leadership Fellows Program cohort, there were many such moments over the last few months.

The Program at a Glance

Over the course of the program, we put our women leaders through a myriad of sessions to help improve tangible skills, assisting with every facet of their personal and professional growth.

Through these specifically-designed sessions, they gained face-to-face time with some of the most accomplished and renowned individuals.

Here are the sessions our women fellows experienced:

Meet the Leaders

These sessions gave our women leaders insight into what it takes to get to a leadership position and thrive there.

And to lead these sessions, we had 4 exceptional experts:

Sabica Rasheed quoted Musharraf Hai’s session as one of her favorites, and rightfully so. Musharraf brought with her immense experience from her time at L’Oreal, Khaadi, and Unilever and gave the women fellows countless instances to learn from!

On the other hand, Yasser Bashir’s session left a lasting impact on Nashwa Tariq, specifically, his recounting of Arbisoft’s failures and successes. Through them, he stressed how important it is to hit the drawing board after a negative experience.

Skill-Based Sessions

The pivotal aspect of the Women Leadership Fellows Program are sessions where the cohort can learn skills to adapt to their respective endeavors.

For this batch, we pulled out all the stops and enlisted some of the hardest working brains from various industries.

Pouru Sidhwa, Chief HR Officer at Telenor Microfinance, conducted an all-important session on managing people. Professional and personal experiences often confront us with unprecedented situations – sometimes, uncomfortable – and these situations can be scarring.

This is where Pouru Sidhwa’s session prepared our women leaders to deal with high-performance teams, workplace harassment, and other relevant situational scenarios.

Mental Health Sessions

When striving towards success, there are bound to be several obstacles in the way – nothing valuable was ever achieved without a bit of elbow grease!

Having said that, to keep from becoming overwhelmed, it’s integral to keep our mental health in check, and that’s exactly the kind of break Alizeh Valjee, of Saaya Health, offered our women leaders.

Rest, relaxation, and recharging is key to achieving goals!

Goal Setting for Professional Success

Speaking of achieving goals, there is such a thing as biting off more than you can chew; in contrast, not using your time wisely is also a hazard.

Our women leaders got the chance to learn about the perfect balance between the two through the experience and expertise of Sana Farooq from ELN.

Other Sessions for the Women Leaders

Some of the other sessions include an insightful talk on financial management led by Sennen Desouza, arming women with knowledge on how to create multiple revenue streams, among other things.

Towards the end of the program, we jostled to bring all these teachings together, helping our women fellows tie up everything they’ve learned in their own unique way. This happened through an all-encompassing session on personal branding led by Sadaf Shaikh of Pepsi.

On the other hand, there were also 3 sessions on adaptive leadership led by Noorulain Masood from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. With leadership being the focal point of the entire program, these sessions offered a blueprint for our women leaders to follow when attempting to realize their goals.

Women Leadership Fellows Program: A Memorable Experience!

Led by Katalyst Labs’ Program Manager and Program Associate, Kashaf Jamal and Maha Ahmed, the WLFP cohort 2 was not just a memorable formative experience for the women leaders, but was also just as important for the team!

In contrast, Farah Naz Ata, a member of the cohort had rave reviews about the experience; she said:

“The WLFP has been just what I was missing. Being a working woman in a field dominated by men, I couldn’t find women who were going through the same things I was. Connecting with so many women who are not only working moms but those that have changed careers, are battling their own demons, taking care of their aging parents, and several others have given me an extraordinary strength. What I have learned from this experience is that my being a woman or a working mom is not my weakness but a strength that should be used to my advantage. What I discovered from Noor’s sessions on adaptive leadership is that the perception of leadership is what I make of it, not what society wants it to be. From Alize’s session, I have learned to take care of my mental well-being first. I feel a lot more focused, goal-driven, and determined after this program.”

As our women leaders go on to conquer the world, we wish them the best, offering our undying support for their future endeavors!

To learn more about the selected women leaders in the graduating cohort, click here! To sign up for the next cohort of the Women Leadership Fellows Program, click here.