In honor of Women’s History Month, Campaign US is checking in with women across the industry, from all career levels, on how they’ve navigated the past year personally and professionally.
This interview with Tish Galindo, CEO of 360 Agency, has been lightly edited.
What has the past year been like for you personally?
It’s been a time of reflection, growth, introspection and grounding. I focused on being very intentional on how I spend my time and want to live my life.
How have you managed through isolation, burnout and other challenges of the past year? What strategies have you used to balance work and home life?
I haven’t been immune to these challenges, but despite that, my faith has gotten deeper. I’ve leaned into friendships and found comfort and strength in relationships that align with my values. Isolation has also given me gifts, like deepening my relationship with my two sons.
I realized that focusing on my emotional needs was necessary to get through some of the more challenging times. Reading, learning, talking and listening have been a vital part of my day-to-day.
I’ve also held myself accountable to work time and personal time. Working from home can be a blur. I’ve given myself permission to make time to work out. I’ve actually taken up some new hobbies, like painting and shopping on Instagram (does that qualify as a hobby?!).
What can we do in our industry about the current crisis of women leaving the workforce?
The crisis is real and very troubling. The collapse of childcare, coupled with kids not being able to attend school, has driven millions of working mothers out of the workforce. This has especially impacted women of color.
If we don’t address this immediately, we run the risk of setting gender equity back a generation. As an industry, we need to work together to drive awareness, put processes in place to support working moms and ensure they know where to find the resources and funding to support them.
What progress has the industry made in achieving gender parity? What still needs to be done?
We still don’t have enough women in the c-suite. Having the conversation helps, but it's not enough. Women need access to higher paying jobs and systematic childcare support. Affordable daycare is one of the biggest challenges women face and it has become even more complex. Mothers are teachers and workers at the same time, without resources or support. We need formal mentorship and sponsorship programs that help women succeed. We need to understand how companies are moving the needle and meeting markers within a reasonable timeline.
Companies need to acknowledge the value women bring to the workforce. Our point of view is important. We can’t be a party of one in the room. Companies have to better understand what motivates women. We need programs where we can bring our kids to work to give them a deeper appreciation for our careers outside of being moms. They can see how other people admire their mom, giving them a greater perspective on who she is.
What work can still be done to address the disproportionate impact this crisis has on BIPOC women?
Compensation needs to be corrected, first and foremost. Next, representation in leadership. We need leaders that understand BIPOC issues are different and can help address those issues to make real change.
We can implement unconscious bias training for c-suite leadership, formal mentoring and sponsorship programs and design an infrastructure that supports success.
How can the industry support women in the workforce during this stressful time?
Let’s start by listening. Truly listening. It’s been a really hard year, and it’s been most difficult for women. So, let’s create a safe space and talk about how we can help. What can we do better? What solutions can we offer to make their lives easier?
It all starts by listening.