With the word, some of our Panorama’s female members
In celebration of International Women’s Day, we invited some of Panorama’s female members, who hold leadership positions at their firms, to share some of the challenges they face as women in the corporate world.
They talked about the balance of multifunction that includes professional life, motherhood, personal life and self-esteem, and how their plurality is essential to make them even more outstanding professionals.
Check it out!
Blaire Miller – Managing Partner/ Owner at The Hunter Group
“I have lived by the three-legged stool theory while raising a family: you have three legs of family, work and self. Suppose one gets too heavy the stool tips. So, while there are many times each leg needs extra attention and time, one should rebalance the other two legs to feel positive and fulfilled. Happily, you get lots of reminders from each leg when to shift weight!”
Jen Bradley – Partner, at Buffkin / Baker
“When I started my career in the corporate world, women were prompted to dress a certain way, wear their hair a certain way, etc., in order to be taken more seriously and to convey professionalism. You either focus on your career, or you focus on your home life. It’s not that we no longer have those expectations, but I would like to think we have progressed. Women who are wives and mothers are taking more leadership positions and paving the way for other women, providing confidence that we can have both family life and a successful career. We reorganize, find the time, move mountains if needed to make sure we show up for our clients and our colleagues.
The question I like to ask myself is if we are doing business with someone who feels tending to the needs of the family is unacceptable, do we want to be doing business with them anyway?”
Pouline Mangaard – Partner at Mangaard & Partners Executive Search
“Being an entrepreneur is not something you can study, I believe that being an entrepreneur comes from within. When I tell you that I am the mother of three kids, you may ask yourself how I get time to manage everything?
Planning is one very important discipline in our home, as my husband also works full-throttle on all his projects, and very often, we cannot limit our work efforts to taking place during daytime hours.
The last thing is embracing the fact that being a woman, a mother, a spouse, is not equal to not having the opportunity to make a career! I think this perception is key to your path as a career woman.”
Nicola Mirza – Partner at Hobson Leavy
“I am the mother of two daughters aged 6 and 9. As I have become more senior in my role, my commitment to work/life balance has become more of a work/life blend. I find that it is impossible when you have a busy home life and also a busy work life to separate the two. Trying to do that actually puts more pressure on you I have come to realize, and I am lucky that I am able to respond to a client while I am at swimming lessons for example. It is important to have days in the office where you can focus solely on work, but I have found that one of the positives of covid’ work from home’ for women in professional services is finally the acknowledgement that we can successfully blend. Hybrid working and flexibility is something that I believe senior professional women need to own. The last 15 years have seen a massive change in workplace expectations and I know how efficient, organized and disciplined working mothers are. It is refreshing and energizing to know that I can drive my daughters to school if I have no meeting scheduled and have that important chat time with them but still perform at my job without feeling guilty that I wasn’t sitting at my desk at 8.30am.”
Mariana Villalva – Partner at EXEC
“I’ve spent times feeling a lot of guilt, others not so much. A little we always feel. It is rooted in the nature of motherhood. However, I’ve always policed myself to balance things out.
At first, when Fabio was a baby, I would stop at 18:00 and stay with him alone and get back to work late at night. Fabio will be seven soon, and taking stock of all these years, I can say that above all I was very lucky (or I struggled to get there, I think I was worthy and attracts good energies), because I had a companion who was a super father always, and it is until today – even after the divorce – and a family member helped me to raise Fabinho as a second mother. Which, deep down, reassured me, because I was working, but always around, and I knew he was in excellent hands.
Also, I always understood that my personal life was valuable, so I would fit in the personal trainer at night after my son slept, sometimes I was able to go out with friends, go to the movies, and on weekends I could still count on the help of the grandparents! And so I managed to keep the balance in a way and never, ever stop working with what I love!”
Thais Pegoraro – Partner at EXEC
“I believe that a good mother is, above all, passionate about her life and the woman she is. Doing things for yourself, being proud of your trajectory, taking care of self-esteem, even if it means less time with the child/ren, and more time with work – this makes this woman, who is already multifaceted and plural, a woman satisfied.
I don’t use “happy” because that concept is unattainable and ephemeral. But satisfied, we can be. And a woman satisfied with herself is a better mother, a better professional, a better citizen. The “imposter syndrome” that accompanies us can have its value – it allows us to stay connected, attentive, learning and dedicated. And that comes back in value to us!”
Camila Marion – Partner at EXEC
“Being a woman requires us to consider some issues. I really enjoy working, so it’s something essential for me, that’s what gives me the energy to do other things, but the point is to try to balance it with the other fundamental pillars: children, family, friends and myself. To make all this happen, I share all chores with my husband, my mother and at times in my life, nannies.
From the point of view as a partner of a company, I have a very big role to talk to the men of the company and show a new point of view so that they can understand, respect and support what it means to be a woman in the corporate world.”
Corinna Vollmer – Senior Research Consultant at Delta Management Consultants
“I am a Senior Research Consultant and working mother of two lively boys, 1 and 4 years old. When I went back to work after having my first son, I felt like I was never allocating my time appropriately. Neither to my son, nor to work. Especially when working part time, there is always the feeling of guilt, the thought “I should have gotten more tasks at work done AND played longer with my child”. Which is impossible. However, having children has taught me more patience than I ever imagined, and that includes the assurance that the world does not stop turning simply because I did not complete all of my tasks for the day and sometimes prioritize other things over spending time with my children. Clearly, managing expectations helps to alleviate the feeling of being inadequate and can even present new solutions. I once had to do an interview for work late in the afternoon, parked the children with entertainment in another room and apologized in advance just in case they could be heard in the background. As it turned out, the other person did exactly the same thing. He had set up a video call for his son with the grandparents. What I learn from such situations: It might be difficult to get things done sometimes, but there is no need to feel guilty or apologize. Others likely face the same problems and I might learn from their ideas.
Martha Ortega – Director at Kenniff Leadership
“In love with my job as a recruiter and my involvement in the inclusion and equity of women, in love with my great hobby of painting, in love with life. Proud of the women in my family, proud of my daughter, proud of my granddaughter, proud to be a woman!”
The Feminine Strength
And these were some testimonies of the women who, every day, help in the construction of Panorama. We hope that the experiences of these great professionals can inspire other women and show a little about the female perspective in the corporate world.
Panorama wishes a happy International Women’s Day to all, but especially to all our professionals who in our day to day help in the formation of what we are as a company. Thank you all for your unparalleled competence, intelligence and talent!