We must remember that as part of the private sector, we are in a privileged position. However, we cannot remain enclosed in our bubble as most women do not enjoy even the basic rights in their labor contract. Mexico remain one of the countries with the largest wage disparity and the least support toward working mothers. Managerial positions are hardly occupied by women and most beneficiaries of loans for investment are still men. We cannot live in a country that does not respect the talent and power of the female population. As women, we must prepare and know our rights when signing a contract and companies have the obligation to grant us this benefit. The biggest impact we could generate in the short term comes from union and sorority, through support among and toward women in the private sector. We must listen and be heard among our colleagues without judgement, teach and learn, which will not only help us as individuals but as a group. We must ditch the belief that women generate conflict among themselves and start creating the mindset that women also build strong and talented teams.
We need to end the so-called “community violence” (individual or collective acts that violate women’s fundamental rights and promote denigration, discrimination, margination and exclusion in the public sphere). This is hard work and much needs to be done. To reach our objective, we need integral and effective prevention policies that incorporate gender perspective in the enforcement of justice (from the social and historic context we grew and live in, to the way in which the female body is presented and perceived). Our current social context questions the very idea of public spaces and the notion that they offer a place for each of us. Inequality between men and women are the bedrock of social order, which is why violence against women in public spaces translates into uneven relationships of power between genders. We need to create a new social order.
Unconscious bias is the most significant challenge I have faced. Throughout my career there have been times when managers and leadership have made assumptions about what I would be willing or unwilling to take on. As a leader I have seen many managers make assumptions that disadvantage women who are willing to take on challenges. Whether it is working in the field, taking on an international assignment or going on a golf outing, I would give young women the same advice that I give young men: focus on results, be persistent and be sure to put your hand up when you want to take on a new challenge, listen to feedback, help your team succeed and find something you are passionate about.