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Giovana Driessen - CEO 


- elephant skin - 

Female empowerment: women have a voice at Elephant Skin. 

How to empower women in their careers? Let’s talk about it!

40% of our team at Elephant Skin is made up of women and we continue to hire more women, but not because this is our criterion. The selection criteria is the same for men and women: an exemplary CV and professional experience conducive to the position.

Having a significant female force is very important to ES, as it reflects our demand for greater qualification and achievement.

“Today I am CEO at ES, but I started 5 years ago by managing projects, when there were only two people (Henrique and Kleiton) working at the company. I always felt welcomed as a woman, and free to enter the space for idea exchange, dialogue, and improvements,” says Giovana.
Over these past 5 years, we have sought to build an atmosphere of safety and opportunity for the growth of women, as well as all the professionals, who work on our team.

We constantly ask ourselves ‘what are the initiatives and behaviors that make a work environment one in which women thrive, and what can we do to empower this performance?

Voice and autonomy: at Elephant Skin, we communicate!

After 5 years, as ES enters its next phase, one of our foremost strategic goals is a wider diversity of independent thought and voices across all positions.

The objective is to bring autonomy and a voice to the people as they deliver projects, while also encouraging them to suggest alternate ways we can work more productively and create a more inclusive space for female performance.

We host a monthly in-person event and invite an external guest to address the female presence in the job market in general, not only in the real estate sector. This event also targets the development of soft skills, such as resilience and leadership.

When we talk about a growing female strength, we are not criticizing male behavior or addressing male dominance in the market. We are merely making an effort to empower women.

Assume the position of power!

At ES, we seek to take advantage of day-to-day challenges to empower attitudes among the women who work with us. The first step is to listen; to welcome what it is they have to share. There have already been situations in which some clients with a patriarchal and hierarchical profile did not treat some of our Client Managers the way they deserve or we expect.

Instead of ES taking a stand and making a decision alone, we posed the following question to the team: ‘What position should we take in order to give you our full support?’

It was really inspiring to note that it’s not always best to just have a board intervene in that scenario. In this case, you can empower the professional by making certain that her voice is heard.

We reached a consensus with the full support of ES. She took a firm position and managed to be very clear at the next meeting. At ES, respect from everyone is mandatory, regardless of nationality, ethnicity, or gender.

Our professionals have the freedom and autonomy to respectfully interrupt a meeting and return only when he/she feels comfortable.
Empowerment is linked to having a voice, to building a space for speech and dialogue, and a freedom within the company to take actions and initiatives that you believe to be the best remedy to a situation.

In our culture, leadership does not occupy the space of “the older brother” in defense of those who have been offended. Rather, we dialogue so that the individual can take their own stand, listen, and have actual power. When you feel welcomed, you are able to position yourself appropriately and take charge of your own situational safety.

An additional interesting fact is that 90% of our leadership in project coordination is female. And, these leaders are the one who deal directly with the customers.

The photo that opens this text is from a productive conversation we had with some clients at a recent event in São Paulo. Notice something?  Were all women!

Giovana adds, “I am immensely happy to be a part of this diverse community, to work with amazing women, and to believe, above all else, that we can always go further.”

May Elephant Skin continue to occupy that space where each woman has the freedom to assume her own power and advance in their respective careers.


#BeAnElephant #womenempowerment


Communications Manager - Roberta Lemos
Author – Journalist Daiana Barasa and Juliana Rodrigues | Naiá
Interviewed – Giovana Driessen - CEO

*All Rights Reserved to Elephant Skin Group Corp.​

12/01/2022 - 3:53 PM EST

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