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Qatar committed to empowering women: QF official

Qatar committed to empowering women: QF official

Ailyn Agonia
DOHA
By supporting women in the workplace and putting more women in iconic leadership positions, Qatar has demonstrated its commitment to empowering women, said Amy Johnson, director of Community Engagement at Qatar Foundation -- Community Development.
Johnson is an award-winning executive with global leadership experience in managing and operating within family business, not-for-profit, corporate and sporting event environments. The mother of four children is a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for her achievements in Qatar and her exceptional service to Canada. She is a proud alumna of HEC Paris, a member of QF.
In an interview with Qatar Tribune on the occasion of International Women’s Day, the senior executive said while a gap still exists in Qatar, as in other parts of the world, it is a global challenge that is being faced and requires global effort.
“Every day I come to the office, I know I am empowered and asked to explore fearlessly. I have incredible women leaders around me who inspire me daily to push and achieve and do more for the community. It’s because of this support and freedom that I believe I have been able to achieve what I have achieved in my field. Working in an incredible ecosystem like the Education City has also helped me achieve success; for those who aren’t currently familiar with the EC, I encourage you to explore its various community programmes and academic institutions -- no matter your age, EC has something for everyone -- to see if something can help you achieve greater success in your life,” said Johnson.
Touching on the current challenges for women, she said balancing a successful career, family life, marriage and the pandemic, among others prove to be a collective challenge in all sectors for many women.
“I personally struggle with the idea of ‘balancing’ all areas, at the time. I believe that at times, certain areas are not balanced, and I’ve learnt to accept that’s okay; we’re human at the end of the day. What’s important is you give focused and dedicated time to each area when you are in the moment. Planning, honest communication and scheduling is for me personally. It’s also important to make sure you are surrounded by supportive people professionally and personally,” she said.
“I believe the glass ceiling exists and is very real for many people in many sectors locally and globally. I am fortunate in my current sector that it is made up of 40 percent women in leadership roles. Due to this, I have never felt a glass ceiling because I am a woman. I know this is a special case and again, its important women and men collectively push past any glass ceilings by using their influence and voice to ensure people are chosen for positions based on their skillset and not their gender,” she added.
On this year’s slogan for International Women’s Day ‘#ChooseToChallenge’, Johnson said for her this resonates as speaking up and having a voice and support other women.
“It is possible to have a family, have a successful career, have a great marriage and be healthy and happy yourself. It’s not easy, it takes a huge amount of planning, scheduling, managing multiple calendars and sometimes letting one thing be less than okay in order to move another area ahead. But with the right family, community and managers around you, and with a lot of communications and being open and honest with yourself, the sky is the limit! Make sure you find that strong network who supports you and find an amazing boss who works with you! You can do anything!” Johnson remarked.

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