Spain was ranked number 28 on the Women in Work Index according this year’s publication of PwC. Out of the 34 OECD country members that work together to promote economic growth, prosperity and sustainable development, Spain was ranked the same place as the year before, although it made a small improvement on female economic empowerment just like most of the member countries.
At Sotheby’s International Realty, especially in Spain, men and women have equal chances of growing their career towards a leading position. Alejandra Vanoli, General Director of the group VIVA Sotheby’s International Realty, leads a team of about 25 persons across Balearic Islands and Madrid and the group is expanding fast; it will be opening various VIVA Sotheby’s International Realty offices across the mainland this year, such as in Valencia and Bilbao. We are having conversation with Alejandra on International Women's Day.
Having many years of experience in a leading position, you probably have seen how different gender ratios influence the workplace. Does gender balance play an important role for a healthy workplace and if so, to what sense?
- I don’t believe that gender difference strictly leads to labour issues butI do know that women at the workplace understand different situations and handle them with more flexibility. This particularly influences the ambience at the workplace.
How does the company benefit from having (leading) women on the workplace? What are the women’s´ strength?
- Without a doubt, the ability to multitask and resolve conflicts. The general vision of the team and ability to promote and boost its productivity, thanks to a greater capacity for empathy and understanding the business scope.
Do women have any extra obstacles to overcome in the real estate sector, compared to other sectors? What are these obstacles and how can they be overcome?
- Obstacles can be common in different industries, for example achieving and maintaining a healthy work-life balance. In executive positions, being accepted and recognised as a leader may still be difficult since the presence of women in management positions has in some places not been completely accepted.
What would you recommend to any other women who wish to make a professional career in the real estate industry?
- Perseverance, honesty and passion for work. And very important to develop an attitude of involvement, to work together as a team in order to reach the same goal and grow personally and professionally.
Which woman do you personally admire the most?
- Peggy Guggenheim in the world of art, Victoria Ocampo in literature and, without a doubt my mother who taught me by example to value independence and freedom, as well as devotion to the family.
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