Anna Jimenez Morera is one of Würfel’s founding members and has been a key part of the brand’s success and achievements since its inception. On the occasion of International Women’s Day, we spoke to Anna on her challenges as a woman in a leadership position, her reason for joining the modular kitchen industry, and her vision for the brand. Here’s what she had to say.
- What sparked your interest in this field?
I believe it happened gradually. My mom was a working-woman who juggled the balancing act of a full-time job and taking care of the home, very well. I always noticed her interests and attention-to-detail when decorating the house, bringing in useful things, utilising space, and not just randomly decorating for the sake of it. My interest piqued with my dad’s contribution towards the technical side. He was always actively looking for things to do with the furniture, whether it was assembling pieces, or restoring a piece of furniture, he was always very precise and knew exactly what was needed.
I remember this one time I wanted to change my bed. So we went to an old market and bought an old bed, restored it, painted it and made it as good as new. In Spain, we have a thing for antiques and rustic furniture.
All these factors made me realise just how big a job my mom was doing and how important it was for her to have storage in place. Since she could not shop everyday, it was essential to have good storage space with moisture-free cabinets to help keep things for longer.
- Can you tell us a memory from your childhood that helped shape the woman you are today?
Well, there is not one memory or one occasion, but a number of such events. The inspiration has always come from my superwoman – my mom. Seeing her juggle her responsibilities so well – career, children, family, the home.
Her mother passed away when she was just 4, while her younger brother was just 2. So from a very young age itself, she had to take on the responsibility of looking after her younger brother and being a mother to him. She started working in her early teens to support and provide for the family.
Her strong determination to build a great family for herself, which she missed while growing up, led her to find a lovely man, my dad, and brought us together to become the happy family that we are today. She taught me to never settle for less. She is a warrior and I am very lucky and blessed to have her.
- Considering you’re not from India, you have the unique perspective of seeing how women get treated here versus in Spain. What would be the key differences?
The key difference is in how talent is viewed. In India, there are fewer leadership roles offered to women in middle and senior management, as compared to Spain. Skill development to take on senior roles and mentorship of this talent is not taken very seriously.
I feel HR could do more with their policies to support women – such as adequate maternity cover, representation in the industry, changing HR panel discussions, stronger and stricter policies for harassment.
- What it’s like being a female leader in a company like Würfel,in an emerging market like India’s?
Being a leader in a company like Würfel has made me realise that leadership skills are universal. The ability to inspire, influence change and drive company results are universal objectives of male and female leaders. The key difference lies in middle management to senior roles, where the ratio is skewed. In meetings and in offices, I feel the responsibility to represent both, the expat woman and the woman.
Representation is the only way to bring about true change, so I am constantly looking at ways of bringing in more professionals with culturally diverse backgrounds, be it male or female.
Being a leader, I look at the best industry practices world over, and use them to positively influence the way of working, interacting, and functioning at Würfel.
Working in this industry also gives me the chance to deal with Real Estate and construction, where again you don’t see a lot of women. It’s a mindset I hope to see a change in.