ZS wouldn’t be the same without the diverse perspectives and experiences of our people. Asian@ZS, one of our diversity, equity and inclusion groups, ensures a respectful and conscientious space for all Asian-identifying ZSers and allies through active dialogue and engagement. To celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, the group has organized a global town hall and several local office events that aim to educate ZSers on the wide range of voices and cultures of Asia.
To understand the full impact of Asian@ZS and this heritage month, ZS sat down with Ash Easwar, a strategy insights and planning consultant in Philadelphia.
“One of the really exciting things about ZS is that there are so many opportunities,” Ash said with a wide smile. “I’ve worked at a few other places, and it usually goes that you get onboarded onto your projects and spend all your time and energy there. Then, very slowly, you start to hear about cultural initiatives and opportunities. At that point all the stuff sounds great, but your passions are already tied up. ZS does a great job of bringing that stuff out in the beginning and the forefront. It shows the company's commitment. This stuff is important, it’s not an afterthought.”
While reflecting on his work with Asian@ZS, Ash almost glowed. “One of my biggest passions is social justice and making sure we are creating an equitable society. Asian@ZS gives me an opportunity to explore that with a community. I’m a consultant who gets to connect with other consultants, many of whom have just entered the workforce. I think that’s where I’ve had the largest impact.”
Elated, Ash then dove into why he finds his work with Asian@ZS so fulfilling, “There is an opportunity to look at this younger generation and say they don’t know anything different. But there is also an opportunity for us to share insight and let them be agents of change.” He likened the opportunity to break room coffee. “Companies have traditionally spent millions on coffee for employees, but people entering the workforce don’t always know this. If they are working from home, or just starting out, they don’t even know to ask for coffee. That creates an exact parallel to social change and equitable change. People haven’t seen what we could do or how we can be really proud of our culture.”
This sentiment is at the root of this year's celebration. Asian@ZS is working to break the silence and proudly educate ZSers on the many cultures of their community. “’Asian’ is so broad,” Ash said. “It's India, China, Japan, Vietnam, the Philippines and more. I mean, even just India and China are two very different cultures. One of the things we are really trying to do is show everybody that we are such a diverse world. Asian@ZS events provide a fun way for us to share our diverse culture.”
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