Guzel Khismatullina: ''Businesswomen have always lived with a sense of guilt, enough!''

The emotional manifesto for all female entrepreneurs who still don't have enough faith in themselves

Guzel Khismatullina: ''Businesswomen have always lived with a sense of guilt, enough!'' Photo: Maksim Platonov

Forty three percent of managing directors in Russia are women. This is the highest rate in the world, shows the research of the Russian academy of business and entrepreneurship. However, despite the fact that achieving heights in career is an accomplished fact, women continue to prefer to keep a low profile. Guzel Khismatullina, the director of Teamsoft training centre in Kazan, reasons why this happens on the pages of Realnoe Vremya.

Recently I have been invited to be a speaker at a major forum, which brought together entrepreneurs, managing directors, more than 2,000 people, the topic of the forum related to challenges of the future — it is an important, necessary conversation! The topic that I was suggested was called – ''Woman as a business hearth keeper.''

What challenges are you taking about? Here is your place, woman – a keeper! I tried to convince them to change the topic, but I was told that it had already approved. Stop! What are you talking about? What keeper? What business hearth?

Business means speed, progress, decisions, the price of which is millions (and not always rubles). I do business, develop the market, change the world, do things I love, and I do it well.

Besides, everything is great in my personal life, too! I have great relationships with my ex-husband, great relationships with my daughter and — yes! — I have chosen freedom, because I know the worth! I think that right now some of you would say (or think), ''Well, everything is clear, her personal life went wrong.'' It is not true, it went right!

I do not take away the male role in any case, just in the same way as a blanket in bed — I just take another one. It is what has changed. I think we have become to prove less, to adapt and to live more. It is important to understand, first and foremost, for us, women!

''We, women, can perfectly cope with stress and act in situations of risks. While some people do running, swimming, rafting — we work, and we do it well.'' Photo: teamsoft.ru

My mother continues to tell me: ''Honey, keep a low profile!''

The world has changed and we, women, do not keep it, we develop it! But many of my colleagues get used to do it quietly, not drawing attention to themselves. Why attracting undue attention to yourself? And consequently, we miss a lot of opportunities. My mother also tells me: ''Honey, keep a low profile!''

But it is already a thing of the past. The world has changed, and we along with it.

We know how to achieve success both in family and business, we have learned to make money doing what we love.

We have learned to work in the conditions of multitasking. In general, we already knew how to do it but now we have time: before we had to wash, cook, clean — each task was a separate, fairly complex business process. The laundry took all day for my grandmother, she prepared everything even an evening before.

Now these complex business processes have turned into simple actions and take 5-10 minutes. We have a lot of time, and most importantly, we cannot sit idle. According to the Russian public organization Russian academy of business and entrepreneurship (RABiP), Russia today takes the leading place in the world by percentage of female business leaders. At the same time, women's business is 1,7 times more dynamic than men's. Here we have found how to engage ourselves.

What is the reason for it? Life is changing rapidly. Changes, crises — all of this causes stress. And we, women, can perfectly cope with stress and act in situations of risks. While some people do running, swimming, rafting — we work, and we do it well. That is why the share of women among CEOs in Russia is 43%, which is the highest figure in the world, almost twice higher than the average.

Besides, the Soviet past has taught us to save, so we are perfectly able to cope with challenges with a shortage of resources, to manage costs.

As Indra Nooyi, CEO of PepsiCo, said, ''If you break up with the sense of guilt, then you throw off from the shoulders a great burden.'' Photo: theallineed.com

What women do not have – enough faith in themselves

About competences: it is generally believed that women do not have strategic vision. Come on! We have learned to look further and bolder.

We live and work shoulder to shoulder with men and learn quickly. So we have learned to look ahead. You have just met us, but we have already assessed your potential, seen (or not) our children's future, assessed risks, and even made a plan. And we carried this skill over to business. Now — our time, because we have a unique ability to manage risks. Besides, unreal offspring preservation instinct, so we manage to develop our business, think about employees and raise the talent pool at the same time.

But all what we do lack is a faith in ourselves, support of each other and we should react less to what people say. Their job is to tell, our — to create.

As Indra Nooyi, CEO of PepsiCo, tells: ''The first thing I'd say to women is put aside the guilt. I think we're all genetically programmed to feel guilty for not giving total effort at the job. If we do, we worry that we're not giving it all at home to the kids or to our spouse. If you give up the guilt, that's a huge load off your shoulders.''

After all, the meaning of our life is to love, and now we have much more time and effort to love our family. Or our job. Or our hobbies. Or all together. The world does not require us to choose one or the other, but we do not understand it yet.

We are becoming more interesting, there is something to discuss with us, to be inspired from us, we can support, and stop hiding it!

What will people say? Do well, with love, and people will say good things.

By Guzel Khismatullina