Breaking the concrete ceiling with Gera Misty Waters - the first project built by an all-women team
- With this first-of-its-kind housing project ever to be supervised and managed by a team of women civil engineers, Gera Developments takes the progressive lead in #WomenBuild creating equal employment opportunities for women in real estate.
- The felicitation of the all-women team, inauguration of Gera’s Misty Waters and handing over of the apartments to homeowners was done at the hands of India’s prominent corporate lawyer, Ms. Zia Mody
Gera Developments Pvt. Ltd., pioneers of real estate and the award-winning creators of premium residential and commercial projects in Pune, Goa and Bengaluru, today commenced the handing over process of Gera’s Misty Waters, Keshav Nagar, Pune to the apartment owners of the project. ‘Gera’s Misty Waters’ is a first-of-its-kind housing project ever to be supervised and managed by an all-women project team. Gera Developments has taken the progressive lead with #WomenBuild thus creating a whole new avenue of opportunities for women in real estate. The felicitation of the all-women team, inauguration of Gera’s Misty Waters and handing over of the apartments to homeowners was done at the hands of India’s prominent corporate lawyer Ms. Zia Mody.
Stemming from Gera Developments’ core philosophy of Let’s Outdo, the brand envisioned having greater representation of women in the construction sector on the project sites. This led to the creation of an all-women team who has been working on all aspects of this project. With the thought process of creating equal employment opportunities for women especially in the space of civil engineering and to scale up in the real estate sector, a highly motivated and aspiring all-women project team of seven women civil engineers was recruited for Gera’s Misty Waters. Led by Ann Mary Alex, the team comprised of MugdhaRasal, Shrutika Ware, PriyaKohad, SupriyaSurvase, Alisha Mascarenhas and Divya Jain.This team of young women were just starting their careers in the field of civil engineering when they were recruited specially for these roles three years ago. They were excited to work on the field and fulfill their dreams rather than have desk jobs. They were hired across profiles from Store/ Safety/ Junior engineers/ Senior Engineers & Project Leads and performed various jobs from contractor management, labour management, project planning, store keeping, safety, quality, engineering and project leads which are typically male dominated roles. They successfully handled the responsibility of this project. This is the first time such an initiative has been taken in the real estate sector, nationally.
Speaking at the event, Mr. Rohit Gera Managing Director Gera Developments P Ltd said “An all-women team was a dream then when we conceptualised Misty Waters. #WomenBuild is a reality now. Looking back, the initiative was welcomed within our organization, however, to our dismay we found that the mindset of the smaller contractors as well as their construction workers was still stuck in a time warp. There was a fundamental reluctance to accept directions from women in a position of leadership and power. We decided that the only way around this problem was to have a team that comprised only women thereby eliminating the option to treat the women as inferior completely. We therefore set up an all-women team tasked with the responsibility to manage, supervise and deliver Gera’s Misty Waters, our residential project at Keshav Nagar in Pune. After scouring several platforms, we selected a group of highly motivated women who were more than willing to go the extra mile and smash through the glass ceiling. We made it clear to each of these members of the team that success in delivering the project as promised would be a huge boost to the cause of women on construction sites and failure would lead to a setback for a long time. The team has (and not without challenges) successfully completed the project.”
The outcome of this landmark move through the lens of gender diversity in a challenging sector like real estate has achieved a whole lot more than just the absolute numbers of the women engineers working on site but challenging as it may seem, gradually building a culture of open communication, trust, and inclusiveness thereby resulting in a better, more competitive organization creating equal employment opportunities for both men and women alike.
Mr. Gera further added that, “Our initiative is only the first of many and goes to show just how much passion and potential waits to be discovered and brought into the spotlight. I am delighted that our highly competent and motivated team has completed this challenging task so well. This team has proven that executing construction projects is something that is not linked to any gender but based on having the requisite skills. It is also important to recognise the fact that eventually, hundreds of construction workers and numerous contractors, mostly men, were ok being led by a team of women. I hope that the success of these women stands out as a beacon and motivates women in civil engineering and other fields to take up responsibilities in areas that are considered male dominated roles.”
Ms. Zia Mody, prominent corporate lawyer and businesswoman while complimenting Gera’s Misty Waters and felicitating the all-women team said, “This is an important milestone not only for Gera Developments or Pune but for all women aspiring to join a male dominated workforce. They have set a precedent by hiring an all-women team to lead the construction of a project. I would urge all women not only in civil engineering but women in the workplace everywhere and also young girls deciding their education and career paths, to draw inspiration from this team and follow their dreams, unfettered.”
Standing 10 storeys tall, Gera’s Misty Waters comprises of 2 BHK and 2.5 BHK modern apartments. There are 118 apartments that have been delivered in this project along with thoughtful amenities, a clubhouse and extensive infrastructure and landscaping. The location and soil conditions made the project more challenging. The all-women project team took all of these challenges in their stride and successfully completed this landmark project.