Women in industry
Eva Arias de Sologuren, Executive President of
Inspiring women from mining and metals
How success comes from a diverse team
Eva Arias de Sologuren’s roots are deep in mining, with a family that has been in the mining sector for several generations. Although her exposure to mining was extensive from a young age, growing up in mining camps, she decided to study architecture and later founded an architecture firm. By the end of the 1970s, the mining industry was going through a difficult period and Eva made the decision to enter the sector to help in her family’s business.
Navigating the sector through this period, Eva learned that regardless of who is leading, man or woman, success comes from facing challenges as a team. The various perspectives each team member brings to the table result in better, more informed solutions. In this sense, a diverse team is a more powerful team.
Success came from strong family support
Eva’s family played a key role in her professional development. Her parents had liberal values and encouraged Eva to study at a time when women were not expected to do so. Without their support, Eva believes it would have been difficult to study, develop her entrepreneurial spirit and eventually start her career in mining.
Her husband and children are also involved in the business. Eva consider sthis an asset, and she sees her family as a great team and anintegral part of her success and the success of the business.
Helping women to advance
Eva states that a career starts with solid foundations, together with an honest interest and passion for your work. “First and foremost, women need to have passion for what they do, not only in mining but overall.”
“You can’t just be given a freebie for being a woman. You need to be good at what you are doing and have strong drive and perseverance. You have to be assertive.”
Eva does not believe in gender quotas, as people need to be qualified for what they do. Unsurprisingly, many women are. “In mining, there are many jobs that are being increasingly entrusted to women on the basis of the intrinsic qualities they bring to the table. For example, the handling of large trucks is now often given to women as they take better care of the machine and take fewer risks.“
Eva highlights that women need to create more opportunities for other women in the industry, and that companies should provide supportive structures for women to achieve a work-life balance. “When you are a mother, you need support in both caring for your family and progressing in your career. Women have a dual role, which needs to be supported by companies.”
Career advice from Eva
- Everything starts with a good foundation. This includes a solid academic background, and qualities such as perseverance, assertiveness and strong work ethic.
- Always aim at maintaining work-life balance in your life. Sometimes you may lose control of one or the other, but do not stop persevering until you restore it again.
- A calm demeanor and moderation are key in a cyclical industry such as mining. There will be many crises that are not dependent on you or your performance which you will have to handle.
- It is vital to always remain at the forefront of innovation, especially technology. You need to be prepared and able to adapt to change.
The views of third parties set out in this publication are not necessarily the views of the global EY organization or its member firms. Moreover, they should be seen in the context of the time they were made.
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