Consuelo Prieto, accomplice at Kearney: “Without extra ladies in technical and scientific careers, there’s a danger of regression”

NIUS interviews the girl who has been a accomplice in a consultancy in Spain for the longest years”Today there are applications and agency commitments for girls to achieve administration positions, though there may be nonetheless a protracted solution to go””At Kearney now we have launched a mannequin ‘half time’ in order that having youngsters doesn’t penalize skilled development or promotions

Consuelo Prieto Liébana is a kind of “extraordinarily uncommon” instances by which a lady manages to be a accomplice in a big consulting agency like Kearney, with greater than 3,600 staff and a presence in additional than 40 international locations. Years in the past she managed to achieve the highest of the corporate. In reality, she was one of many first members in Spain and immediately, say these head hunters “who know all the things”, she is essentially the most veteran of hers. She has been a accomplice for greater than twenty years. A profession and a promotion that she, she assures her, she has at all times lived naturally. “Possibly I’ve missed moments in my youngsters’s lives, however nothing that isn’t a part of the selections and resignations of every day” she notes.

What is a actuality, says the marketing consultant on this interview with NIUS, is that though the brand new generations are extra conscious of gender equality, the figures are nonetheless there and just one in three managers in Spain is a lady. For this purpose, the dedication of Consuelo Prieto, an agricultural engineer by coaching, is for younger ladies to regain curiosity in technical careers, the place they solely occupy 36% of the locations in STEM levels (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, for its acronym in English). Because it’s there, says the marketing consultant, the place a part of the job alternatives will come up within the not too distant future.

Question: Getting to the highest and reconciling is an unattainable mission?

Answer: It is true that consulting is a demanding job and it’s fairly a singular occupation. In my case, I’ve organized myself in a pure means and I’ve been capable of mix skilled and private life, combining assist at residence with the versatile mannequin that Kearney affords us, which has at all times taken under consideration private wants and buyer calls for.

There are applications and agency commitments for girls to achieve administration positions, though there may be nonetheless a protracted solution to go

Q. Has the skilled account balanced with the private one whilst a member?

A. Yes, in reality, now we have a conciliation program, which incorporates part-time fashions that every one chooses and that adapts to particular person wants in order that having youngsters doesn’t penalize skilled development and doesn’t have a detrimental impression on promotions . It is true that the world of consulting, as a result of it’s organized by tasks/shoppers, permits you flexibility that in different firms will not be really easy or doesn’t happen.

Q. In different phrases, there may be nonetheless a protracted solution to go.

R. Yes, though there’s a lengthy solution to go. I, who advise on bettering the competitiveness of firms, see that in massive and medium-sized firms there may be consciousness of those facets. Now, though we’re nonetheless a bit far-off, the advances in reconciliation are fairly outstanding. Today there are applications and decided bets for girls to achieve administration positions. Although it’s true that there’s nonetheless a protracted solution to go, I imagine that lately now we have made vital steps. I’m fairly optimistic concerning the efforts which might be being made on this regard each in Spain and in Portugal. In each international locations, the share of feminine managers exceeds that of France, Germany or the United Kingdom. We should be doing one thing proper.

Q. What is the following problem?

R. I’m involved that the share of girls now we have within the so-called STEM careers is reducing, regardless of the large significance that expertise has gained. This implies that the positions reached by ladies might have a danger of regression and that makes me very unhappy, particularly since ladies have by no means had such a big presence within the college as now.

Data evaluation, expertise, renewable power… all of that is going to be enormously necessary, however the urge for food of younger ladies for extra technical careers is declining. Fortunately, there are numerous ladies in Medicine or Biology, though once you go to purely technical careers, comparable to engineering or pc science, we’re at 25% and the share has been reducing since 2020.

Women are dropping the potential of accessing technological disruption and it’s what’s going to give us entry to the following wave of competitiveness in firms

Q. And what is that this lower resulting from?

A. I feel that the extra technical careers have misplaced their enchantment in comparison with others extra aimed on the enterprise world or new careers. I studied Agricultural Engineering within the 80s after which ladies have been 15%. In my class on the Polytechnic University of Madrid there have been solely three ladies and we have been 40 college students. In 2020, 28% was reached, however now the share is reducing and doesn’t go up. With this, ladies are dropping the potential of accessing all of the technological disruption that’s going to offer us entry to the following wave of competitiveness in firms. Technology is right here to remain, knowledge is necessary, synthetic intelligence, machine studying…

Q. What do you advise the brand new generations?

A. Well, with out dropping sight of the above, one has to review what one likes, amongst different issues, as a result of humanities levels on this technological disruption are additionally going to play an important function. There is one thing for everybody, however for younger ladies who like math, science and fixing issues, we should inform them that it’s tremendous gratifying to review a STEM diploma. Although you need to work greater than in different races, ultimately it is value it, so I encourage them.

Q. In your case, how does an engineer find yourself being the primary girl in Spain to turn out to be a accomplice in a big consulting agency?

A. I did an MBA and went into consulting instantly. Kearney, the place she has been for 30 years, in a administration consulting firm. We assist firms to enhance their competitiveness and resolve their challenges in a broad sense: development challenges, value discount and profitability enchancment, and likewise sustainability. We imagine that an organization that isn’t sustainable has no future within the medium and long run.

Sustainability, fairness, equality or co-governance are additionally listed

Q. Is sustainability on the rise?

A. Of course. In reality, I’m satisfied of the correlation between ESG indicators that present an evaluation of the standard of administration of an organization and the worth of an organization by way of the notion that shareholders and prospects have of it. This correlation exists and particularly in Europe. Not all worth is related to development, sustainability can be listed and it’s valued that it’s an environmentally sustainable firm, equitable or that works to enhance equality or co-governance.

At Kearney we feature out optimistic actions in universities and boards to clarify why ladies are extremely certified for consulting and till now we have that fifty% of girls among the many functions in a range course of we don’t cease. Women have a spectacular profile for consultancy as a result of now we have good analytical abilities, empathy, listening abilities and in negotiations we normally search for win-win. On the opposite, we are inclined to ask and demand much less and that’s one thing that generally now we have to proceed engaged on.

Q. Is it a matter of listening?

A. Yes, listening to the issues of an organization, of the managers, of the companions… asking the appropriate questions and doing it in a complete means, makes your analysis extra correct. That is why we ladies have an important future on this occupation, as a result of we all know how you can see the place the issue is, negotiate -if it’s essential to negotiate- and discover a resolution.