Women in Europ Assistance - INTERVIEW WITH VERÓNICA HERRANDO MANAGING DIRECTOR OF AUTO AND DAILYLIFE
Our Women in Europ Assistance series focuses on women in senior positions, exploring their careers and sharing their advice for female corporate leadership
Get to know Verónica
Verónica Herrando, Managing Director of Auto and DailyLife, earned a degree in journalism and has worked in insurance for over fourteen years. She joined Europ Assistance as a key account manager and was promoted to Head of Sales and Marketing in Spain before eventually moving up into general management.“My career in Europ Assistance has been characterized by internal promotions thanks to my continuous effort and dedication. I believe in merit-based rewards, a commitment to in-house talent and empathetic leadership.”
WHY DO YOU BELIEVE GENDER DIVERSITY IS IMPORTANT IN THE WORKPLACE?
Inclusive diversity is a key factor in business, directly affecting improvements in innovation, the generation of new ideas and overall efficiency. A diverse workforce helps us understand and utilize different points of view and experiences to achieve better quality management and design better strategies.At the end of the day, our clients and society are diverse in terms of gender, age and culture. Our business should reflect this.
WHAT IS ONE OF THE MAJOR CHALLENGES WOMEN FACE WHEN TRYING TO MOVE UP IN THE WORKPLACE?
In my opinion, some of the factors slowing women down inside organisations are related to unconscious bias and outdated stereotypes. We all have prejudices. Often they lead us to make decisions regarding both people and business that are emotion-based, rather than fact-based. That is why education and training must play a fundamental role in our society.
As women, our self-imposed standards are very high in every aspect of our lives. We each try to set out what we want to achieve, but we need companies committed to improving the work/life balance.
HOW CAN ORGANISATIONS BECOME MORE DIVERSE AND INCLUSIVE?
Society is more receptive than ever to a commitment to diversity and inclusion. We have to stay alert, avoid rhetoric and speak openly about this issue.I believe in ongoing education and equality training. We should start working on this in childhood in order to avoid creating ill-informed stereotypes. Cultural changes are fundamental to making this a reality.Inside companies we should create specific mentoring programs for women, led by both women and men. Diversity is at the heart of leadership.
EUROP ASSISTANCE IS WORKING HARD TO PROMOTE AN INCLUSIVE CULTURE. IS THE COMPANY MAKING HEADWAY?
Our 2019 participation survey recorded a six-percentage-point improvement in the "Diversity, inclusion and sustainability” category, showing that more EA employees throughout the group feel that the company supports equal opportunities for all employees (+7 points), and that senior management supports workplace diversity (+13 points).