Women from the EGADE Community Share Their Reflections to Commemorate 8M

Within the framework of International Women’s Day commemorations, a student, an alumna, and a professor from EGADE Business School reflect on women’s participation and gender equality in organizations.


March 8 (8M), International Women’s Day, offers a moment to acknowledge and commemorate the struggle for the equality, participation, and empowerment of women in all areas of society.

In 2023, the UN 8M celebration will take place under the theme "DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality," seeking to draw attention to the persistent gender gap in digital access that keeps women from unlocking technology’s full potential.

In order to contribute to an individual and collective reflection on advancements and on the inequalities and structural and social obstacles that thwart women’s empowerment, a student, an alumna, and a professor from EGADE Business School share their reflections on women’s participation and gender equality in organizations.

  • Tania Martínez Ortega, territory manager for Pledge Credit at Scotia Casa de Bolsa and Master in Finance student.
  • Maryangel García-Ramos, executive director of Women Enabled International and EGADE MBA graduate.
  • Eva Guerra Leal, research professor and director of the programs EGADE MBA in Monterrey and EGADE - UNC Charlotte MBA in Global Business & Strategy.

How would you define the current situation of gender equality in organizations?

Tania: In my experience in the financial sector, gender equality has been making slower progress than I would like to see. In fact, if I leave my personal vision to one side and ask other people (men and women) about gender equality in their workplaces, the answers are still similar to mine. Personally, I think that gender equality is not just about hiring more women, but hiring them at every hierarchical level, not just the middle and low levels.

Maryangel: Organizations have done a great job of making the equality gap in the systems in which we work visible. We must remember that women don’t have just a single story, and I say this because organizations often create gender strategies that only resolve or respond to a population of women without taking into account the intersectionality, double or triple discrimination they may undergo for belonging to groups that are historically discriminated against (e.g., women with disabilities, indigenous, migrant, trans, black women, etc.)

Eva: Although we have made progress in terms of gender equality in organizations, there is still much to be done. International Women's Day is an occasion to remember women's struggle for equal rights, raise awareness, reflect, and call for action to address gender inequalities worldwide.

Which of the challenges that women face in the workplace do you think are a priority or the most urgent?

Tania:  The priority challenge for me would be to understand that, within organizations, women can be allies and support each other. The challenge is to understand that we can achieve more together than by competing with each other.

Maryangel: Putting a stop to gender-based violence, which clearly includes sexual violence and abuse. These are reflected in decision-making (mostly by men) in the underrepresentation that exists in decision-making and leadership spaces. Sometimes abusive or sexist attitudes continue to be perpetuated by power systems in organizations.

Eva: The challenges women face include closing the pay and opportunity gaps and achieving greater representation in leadership positions. However, in my opinion, the most important challenge begins at home: in the equitable distribution of household tasks and educating our sons and daughters with a perspective of equality.

What changes need to be made to close the gender gap in senior management positions or in the technology industry, where women’s participation is low?

Tania: We need a greater inclusion of women in boards of directors, shareholder assemblies, and the different committees within companies. Diversity in corporate governance is an advantage; it allows you to see new opportunities, listen to different points of view, and find solutions, and contributes to transparency and efficiency in decision-making, which translates into growth for a company.

Maryangel: You have to invest in a diverse talent pipeline. You have to invest in girls and women from historically discriminated groups, from the opportunity to study to development opportunities in focused projects. And once again, in order to close the gap, putting a stop to gender violence is imperative. 

Eva: From my point of view, parental flexibility or leave benefits should be equal for men and women. If they are only offered to women, they continue to send the message that women should take care of the children and housework. Many women resign from their jobs because their husbands don’t have flexibility in their jobs.

What should the role of women be in the future of business?

Tania: The role of women in the future of business must be the same role that we have in the daily life of this country, that is, a leading role. I find it incomprehensible that we are still questioning the role of women in the workplace or in business. As an economist, I am a woman who prefers analyses based on statistics. And data shows us that wealth generation, high productivity, decision-making that leads to business growth, and the percentage of women starting successful businesses of all sizes, to name a few examples, ought to be sufficient for us to realize that we shouldn't be talking about the role of women in the future, but about the role of women in business right now.

Maryangel: Transform everything. If there is greater representation of women’s stories and perspectives, there will obviously be a greater return on investment and growth (from the capital system perspective). Women in charge are transforming not only the business world but also the push for human rights and public policy. Without women in charge, growth potential falls short, and vision falls short, thus benefitting only a few.

Eva: The role of women is crucial for creating more inclusive and equitable businesses since they can attract and support other women, contributing different experiences, skills, and perspectives, as well as a greater awareness of social and environmental matters.  

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