Women in Communication: interview with Elisabeth Leriche of Renault Italia
Coming of age is certainly an important milestone, both for a person and for a brand and, in this very particular case, for ours.
As the female turns 18, we have decided to start a Women Empowerment project that focuses on women who work in the field of communication.
Elisabeth Leriche, Advertising and CRM Manager for Renault Italy, answered 5 significant questions for us, explaining how important it is for women to become aware of their abilities and cultivate work ambitions.
1. What is "being a woman" like in the world of work?
Being a woman in the world of work, looking at the issue from a global perspective, is different from "being a woman in a European context, since there are different problems. I would like to mention a" French economist, as well as a teacher at MIT, my compatriot, who I respect much: Esther Duflo. After having conducted numerous studies on the economy of poverty, he observed how in microeconomic environments (as regards, specifically, the granting of loans to favor the birth of a small business), mostly restricted to Indian and African, giving women the opportunity to have empowerment through the opening of businesses creates an unparalleled wealth and structure of society. Women empowerment in developing countries is essential for creating wealth. In Europe, that of women in the workplace is a deeply felt issue, but with a different treatment, since it relates to the concept of equality and equality between the sexes.
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2. What was "women empowerment" for you at 18?
For me it was "nothing but" evidence. The fact of being the daughter of the French Revolution and, in a much more direct way, of a mother who built her career by becoming a doctor, after studying in the United States, and working in France, made it all the more evident that I had to reach a certain level of empowerment for my future. I do not deny that this has generated doubts and research about my skills and attitudes, which I was able to answer thanks to the studies, necessary in order to create a fulfilling career path and in line with my personality.
3. Three words you associate today with "women empowerment"
Leadership: today I still have the feeling that women in the workplace impose limitations due to the lack of a vision of themselves as a leader and the consequent conditioning of their ambitions. Fortunately, things are changing, women are becoming self-aware and leading not only companies, but also countries.
Tenacity: often in Italy the career path of a woman is interrupted due to problems mostly related to the family environment. Not all women, in fact, have adequate financial resources and time for a family development that goes hand in hand with the working one; the fact of being tenacious contributes to maintaining a balance both inside and outside the home.
Freedom: what we all dream of, namely the fact of being able to personally decide the path, professional and personal, to take.
4. What would you say to the 18-year-old yourself?
To the 18-year-old I would recommend studying a lot, because a rich educational background is always a promise of the future. Furthermore, I find it of fundamental importance to look for a mentor or to network, because for us women this type of collaboration is not yet natural; Fortunately, this issue has been taken into strong consideration by my company, Renault: in fact, since 2010, the Women @ Renault program has been implemented, which aims to improve and grow the paths of women in the company, as well as create cohesion at the level of social networking between colleagues. Having radically changed my working environment - I started my career in the luxury sector, working for brands such as Cartier and Guerlain, and then dedicated myself to the automotive sector - I had the opportunity to confront women who I saw as a reference, which every day d "today I think it is quite natural, since work paths are no longer linear and it is necessary to reinvent oneself and always question oneself.
5. How much need is there to talk about women empowerment today and what should be done?
Today there is certainly a need to talk about it; as far as Italy is concerned, a lot has been done, but there is still a lot to do, especially as regards issues such as equality of opportunities, training and self-consciousness. In France, for example, a ministry for women's equality in the world of work has been set up, while similar initiatives have been underway in Northern European countries for some time. The fact remains that in the first place it is necessary for women to increase self-confidence and in their abilities in all areas of their life, and having a mentor is certainly a first step to increase self-awareness. In the world of communication there are numerous examples of women who have reached important career positions, managing to balance work commitments with personal ones: this is the case of Cristiana Boccassini and Stefania Siani, respectively Chief Creative Officer at Publicis Italy and Creative Director at DLV BBDO , of Mercedes Erra, CEO of Havas Worldwide and mother of five, of Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook.