Women in Communication: interview with Carola Salva from Havas Health & You Italia
GWPR, or Global Women in PR, has arrived in Italy. But what is GWPR? We are talking about a non-profit association, founded in 2015 in the United Kingdom, whose goal is to create global opportunities for growth, connection and integration between professionals in the PR sector and more generally in Communication. You understood correctly, "professionals", not "professionals" in general, because women are at the center of the work of this association. The Italian reality of GWPR was launched on 21 March 2019 with the aim, and the ambition, to create opportunities for discussion to enhance experiences, ideas and professional relationships on the theme of the "gender gap", encouraging dialogue, participation and inclusion. Helping to create a culture of value capable of creating even more meaningful connections. At the head of this project, Carola Salva, former Chief Executive Officer of Havas Health & You Italy, whom we had the opportunity (and the pleasure) to interview.
What are the objectives of GWPR Italia?
GWPR deals with diversity in Italy with the aim of integrating and enhancing it within the working environment. We want to highlight the impact of differences as the enhancement of only one thing: the intention to create a culture of value. Man and woman together achieve wonderful things, they are able to fertilize this integration, even if women need to develop greater awareness of themselves (of the multiple selves they are naturally endowed with). And there is nothing stronger than encouragement, just what GWPR wants to give them. Like? Through a mentoring and training project aimed at generating new forms of thinking, both aimed at women who aspire to large roles but also at rising stars. GWPR wants to commit to making women more aware, through the creation of deep and sincere relationships that encourage them to get out of their "zone of comfort and unawareness", and through listening. An example? Many of the projects that GWPR will be the spokesperson for will be proposed directly by the associates to the board of directors. We will all be ambassadors and part of the same voice, that of women. The "big idea" can be anywhere, not just at the top. Although GWPR was born as an association aimed at women in communication and PR, the goal is to show itself present and alongside all women and professionals belonging to various sectors. We want and must discuss together our current role in creating change we need, as well as flexibility, equal pay and career paths to make the most of these concepts and move together towards a dimension of concreteness.See also
Women in communication: interview with Hotwire's Beatrice Agostinacchio
Women in communication: interview with Eleonora Rocca founder of Digital Innovatio
Women in Communication: interview with Federica Beneventi from Veepee (vente-privee
What are the values that you think are most important in the workplace?
The values I appreciate most, and which I believe are fundamental to creating a work environment in which women, as well as men, can feel comfortable (and therefore do their job well) are trust and authenticity. Two fundamental aspects to implement authentic integration processes.
Trust is a value that is as fundamental as it is complex. It is a value that goes hand in hand with the concept of reciprocity. To create a productive work environment, it is essential that a relationship of mutual trust is established between managers and collaborators, understanding the needs of each other as well as respecting one's duties. The concept of lifeworking is based on this combination, especially when we think about and relate to a worker who is about to become a mother or who has just become one. And it is also a combination on which life can be organized in such a way that a fertile relationship is established between work and family, which allows us to abandon the idea that to achieve certain work goals it is necessary to give up personal ones, and vice versa. being flexible, and understanding that trust is like an economic asset that impacts all productivity, is the glue in the value chain.Flying trust means nurturing enormous potential.
Another fundamental value is that of authenticity. Exchanges are most fruitful when a woman shows her authenticity. We think of the concept of emotionality, which has always been considered by us women as something to hide to avoid that the male counterpart considers it as the only value on which to “evaluate ourselves”. In reality, emotionality, or rather emotional intelligence, generates many positive effects in the collective, the important thing is to know how to value it in the right way, to implement a true process of inclusion. The truth is that women generate innovation, they bring as a dowry the ability to feel through emotions which, if used correctly, have an incredible power. We can clearly contribute to the increase in GDP, enlightened economists have been supporting this for some time.
How can change be introduced in a meaningful way?
In my opinion there are two fundamental aspects to cultivate if we want to make this change effective: one is on a personal level and one on a company level. On the one hand, there is a job that women have to do with themselves. The first mistake of a working woman is to be unaware of her intrinsic worth. How many times do we not apply for a higher position than ours because, instead of focusing on our strengths, we focus our attention on that competence, perhaps isolated, that we still do not believe we possess enough? The economic consequences of social stereotypes are relevant: they do not circulate talent and do not make it become an economic asset in which to invest. We need to stop moving between stereotypes and being our own first enemy.
And the same must happen at the corporate level. Obsolete schemes must be thrown away, and first and foremost managers must do it together, because change is the result of the individual's commitment to the community. In short, you have to surround your space with the will to be the change you want. If the employee does it and then the manager does it towards the company, change becomes possible. GWPR believes in this, that it is necessary to fertilize one's space to feel good and to create new opportunities, which aim upwards.
What can be done to push this change?
There is still a lot of work to do, we need to relaunch and invest in authentic culture, knock on every door, because many women are not aware of their full potential and what they contribute to create. We must continue to promote moments of confrontation with other colleagues who have risen in level, create multidisciplinary and exchange tables especially with the other sex and not stop training, since it is important to understand how much value we can contribute to change. GWPR aims to support women through spaces for dialogue, through initiatives and projects that focus on supporting and developing the career of women. It will concretely give life to training programs, mentoring, themed events, networking, including international ones, and ad hoc projects with stakeholders who are committed to this front every day.
The inclusion of gender diversity can really go beyond a "duty" to do: it can become something that we really want to do together.
For information [email protected]
GWPR was created to establish a network of reference and representation for female managers, who all over the world operate in the field of PR, Communication, Public Affairs and Advocacy to help significantly affect the culture of value in gender diversity.
Carola Saved, CEO of Havas Health & You Italia, has 20 years of experience in the communication and marketing sector, also at an international level, of which the last 14 in the Healthcare sector on integrated and multidisciplinary projects. Involved personally on issues related to the meaning of innovation and new models capable of creating value and social utility in the field of health, she is also writing a book on the relationship between technologies and awareness. Very active on the subject of diversity and leadership, she was recently appointed President of Global Women in PR Italy. @carolasalvato
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