International Women’s Day: Anna Vieira

Today we sat down with the other half of the fantastic Nineteen Agency leadership team, Anna Vieira and spoke to her about her impressive business journey!

Why do you think it is important to celebrate International Women’s Day?

For me the goal is gender equality and for there not to be a requirement for international woman’s day but the reality is we are very far away from gender equality. Initiatives like International woman’s day are helping bring the conversation to the forefront and for now it is really important that we all speak in unison and strive to bring down the glass ceiling and to see more woman in senior positions.

 Have you faced any barriers in your career due to being a woman? If so, how did you overcome them?

Having had two children, I have twice taken maternity leave and both times felt like I was being left behind. I enjoyed the time I had with my babies but I was keen to get back to work as was very conscious that there were many people waiting to take my position. For me I would have liked to be kept in the loop about big decisions that were being made, whilst this may not be for everyone, I think I would have preferred it. It would be nice to for there to be more flexibility with maternity leave and for the woman to say how it would work best for them individually.

What is the most important piece of advice you have been given?

One of my very first bosses, who was a barrister and a business woman, told me never to assume – it makes an ass out of you and me. I live by that a lot.

 How can we encourage more women to pursue entrepreneurship or senior leadership roles in their career?

I think it has to start in primary schools, my youngest who is 4 recently did an exercise in school about what they want to be when they grow up and it was very centred around traditional job paths, a nurse, a doctor, a police man, a builder. There was no mention of owning your own business, we need to be teaching girls from a young age that they can aim for the top.

Has there been a particular woman that has inspired you in your career?

My business partner, Louise Kemp, inspires me everyday. Louise has a drive and a passion like no-one I have ever met before. Louise has the ability to speak to people in a very empathetic way and I have learnt a lot from just watching how she handles different situations. She also has 3 children and having worked together for 20 years I have seen how she has balanced work and being a Mum.

Why do you think diversity in the workplace is so important?

Working in hospitality it is also really clear to me when there hasn’t been a female input, there are things that just aren’t as considered. Men and woman can think very differently about things which is great but if the female perspective is never considered we will continue to live in a world where the male opinion dominates.

Thanks for chatting with us Anna!