To celebrate 8M, International Women’s Day, we would like to give a voice to the first woman who has achieved a management position in our company, AR Shelving, as Marketing & Communication Director. A determined, young woman, who has just become a mother, a woman who can achieve any challenge she sets herself with a lot of energy and enthusiasm.
Hi Maria, you are in a new position at AR Shelving and not only because of the position but also because you are the first woman to join the management, right? How did you start in AR? What has been your professional career?
I started 11 years ago as an intern to visit points of sale. Being in contact with the prescribers and users of the product gives you a very interesting insight to be able to satisfy the needs of both our distributors and the end customer.
This acquired knowledge led me to perform tasks as Area Manager for the Iberian Peninsula and other markets, working both in mature markets and others with great growing potential, where the needs were very different and therefore their development strategies.
But what always fascinated me was the world of marketing, what and how we communicate, not only ourselves but also our products and solutions. And that passion has grown even more with the rise of the digital world, because of the opportunities it offers.
I am very lucky that AR Shelving has allowed me to develop my professional career, has given me the necessary tools and has trusted me.
Barriers have you faced and how have you overcome them?
Being a woman in a man’s world! (Although there are more and more of us). With attitude and hard work, everything works out.
How did your colleagues see your promotion? Did anyone give you special support?
Completely naturally. AR Shelving has always been committed to the growth of people. I have always felt supported by my colleagues, we are a family.
Was it easy to take on the new responsibility?
Let’s say that everything has been a process, a natural evolution. I am passionate about challenges and new projects; I have always felt “comfortable in discomfort”.
As I understand it, your team, which is also made up entirely of women, sees you as a great point of reference. How does it make you feel to be their reference? What is that team like?
They are my great reference, I am very proud of the team we have formed, so different and compatible, where together we add up to much more than individually. A multidisciplinary team to learn from and contribute to each of the projects we handle.
6 out of 10 women give up their professional careers when they become mothers. Does balancing work and family life mean a challenge for you? Does the Group make it easy for you?
Maybe it’s a bit early to answer that question, it’s only been 6 weeks since I became a mother. I see work-life balance as one of my next big challenges. The truth is that it seems complicated, but the Arania Group is making things much easier for me in this way. With a bit of help and a good attitude, we’ll come out stronger!
What advice would you give to women who want to develop their professional career?
Who am I to give advice! I would only dare to say once again that attitude, hard work and perseverance are fundamental in any aspect of life.
One word that defines how you feel as a woman looking back on your life.