by Rosalba Paletta
I was proudly born in Calabria but the city that formed me as a woman and as a manager is Milan. After studying economics at Bocconi and various work experiences, I decided to return to Calabria, on the strength of my curriculum and stimulated by the professional opportunity that the company I lead today has offered me. Calabria for me was not a return, as it was for many professionals who have decided to return home, but a challenge. The Pubbliemme Group, of which I am the General Manager today, was at a turning point in the company and I believed in the bet that the company proposed to me and that we have won together, namely to become a leader in the national communication market.
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If you went back, is there anything you would change if you could? If so, what?I wouldn’t change one iota of my life and career path. Sometimes looking to the past can be useful but by nature, by character and also by method my gaze on life and on things is projected forward. Unless there is particular evidence that makes me change my mind, I keep my decisions firm and always look beyond, to the future. We are the choices we make, life and our destiny are mainly in our hands; the courage necessary to face our existence must not allow room for uncertainty and useless second thoughts.
We are leaving a difficult year and entering another that promises to be no less complicated, following a health emergency that took us – unfortunately – by surprise. Much could be said on the subject, we with you would like to focus and comment on a crisis within the crisis, that is the one that is affecting women in the world of work. As a “career woman” how did Maria Grazia Falduto live these months of lockdown?The period from which we are preparing to leave has been nothing short of dramatic. In terms of health, the entire world population has been directly or indirectly involved in the coronavirus emergency and the impact on our social habits and on our psychological strength has been really strong. The social repercussions of the pandemic are very serious and the numbers of the various economic and health reports are merciless. Unfortunately, the vaccine that has been presented as a solution to the pandemic crisis in recent days will not be able to immunize us from the real effects that Covid-19 has generated in the global economy. The economic future, which even before the outbreak of the pandemic was uncertain, in such a depressed context as Calabria risks turning into a path of no return and solution, a real crisis within the crisis. The territory from which and in which the company I manage operates daily is characterized by a very difficult and complex social, cultural and economic context, where the underworld is intertwined with the bureaucracy, where politics does not dialogue with the territory and where to do business it is turning into a real mission. For all these reasons it is always necessary to be careful, even during the lockdown and forced closures. The Pubbliemme Group and the Diemmecom Publishing Company have never stopped, on the contrary they have kept the bar straight on the commitments undertaken and the services contracted with their investors, continuing to guarantee all users of the publications a high quality information and entertainment service and absolute presence. From my personal point of view, I can say that this dramatic and uncertain period has strengthened me and made me more aware of my managerial skills. It was certainly hard, I had to make difficult decisions, having very little time available and having in front of me the constant warning to keep the company safe. Others say of me that I am a strong and courageous woman: it is probably true, but many of my successes and of my being a career woman depend on the trust that the whole company demonstrates to have in me every day. I feel quite satisfied with how I have kept the course to get out of the emergency and I must certainly thank all my collaborators, from the closest to the consultants, and share the merit of this delicate step with the President Domenico Maduli. In addition to being a life partner and my son’s father, he is first of all a great entrepreneur who, with his vision, creativity and commitment, transmits the energy and direction needed to deal with the entire company all the challenges with which we measure ourselves.
The data speak of a crisis that has aggravated an already difficult condition: there are still too few women in top positions; they are less paid and, if the world stops – as in the last case of the pandemic – the first to pay the price are women, on whose shoulders the burden of the family falls. “It is not a country for women” one would say … what do you think about it?If Italy is not a country for women, let alone if Calabria can be. To all the critical issues I mentioned earlier, we can certainly add a long list of prejudices and social injustices, among which the condition of marginalization of women in society and in the workplace and in power stands out. In recent years, the history of rights and opportunities has seen women in great recovery but there is still a lot to do. Although there is a different focus on the role of women than in the past, we live in a society that still proves to be strongly sexist. And this aspect is particularly evident in workplaces and places of power, where women generally have to work harder to impose their vision of things and to achieve the results they aspire to. In addition to this reality, in the southern regions, the further difficulty in keeping together the rights to be a woman, with the roles of mother and worker. In short, the process that will lead us to the concrete achievement of equal opportunities is still to be covered.
First a government crisis in full pandemic; then a new well-presented executive: what solutions or concrete measures do you expect as a citizen, as a professional, as a mother – in this general situation of crisis?
The government crisis has come at a critical time and only time will tell if this sudden break will bring real benefit to our country. Certainly the recomposition of the government and the appointment of Mario Draghi can be a great opportunity for Italy to restart. As an economist and corporate finance expert I am happy with the great profile of seriousness, experience, professionalism and international charisma that this Presidency of the Council of Ministers will certainly express, but with all honesty it must be said that the challenge before us is very difficult. As a business executive and professional, I expect greater attention to the economic dynamics that move the country, greater attention to those who play the game fairly in free markets and great concreteness in tax and labor policies. While as a citizen and a young mother, I hope for the future of my region and all its children, that the Recovery Fund, the plan for the recovery of Europe, will be interpreted and implemented as the last chance that the South has to restart. We need a more modern and sustainable society, which knows how to make the benefits of research and innovation available to all, promoting their development and protection, which can face the challenge of climate and digital transitions, which knows how to promote cohesion policies and productive, which can guarantee the right protection to biodiversity and cultural exchange.
I marchi del Gruppo Pubbliemme
Yours is a company, by definition, open to change, to technological and digital innovations. What new projects in action?
The Group I manage has made digital innovation the driving force of its business, especially in recent years. Traditional communication services, which remain a strategic asset of our market, are also evolving in this direction, both from the point of view of management and of the service itself. The company I lead is now fully digitalized and if it were not so it could not continue to be competitive. Technological innovation and all the opportunities that digital offers have allowed us to gradually shift investments and research, and this has allowed over time a significant expansion of our range of services. The Pubbliemme Group, historically a leader in the out of home sector, has already begun a few years ago a transformation of its plants towards the digital out of home with a presence in urban contexts that looks at the technological integration models typical of smart cities. Diemmecom Publishing Company, which publishes three online information publications and the regional television network LaC, was born and operates entirely in a digital environment, exploiting all the potential that only this technology is able to offer. Last in order of appearance, is the LaC Play project, our newly born on demand system of the LaC television network, a shining example of digital technology able to reach all our users on multiple platforms, expanding the territorial perspective of use thanks to web. A very difficult and frontier bet, a test bed on which the future of the cultural and television industry will be played in the coming years. But our Group does not only look to business.
Thanks to the sensitivity of our President, the company is continuously engaged in the social sector by promoting and fostering practices, cultural and solidarity initiatives that strongly bind us to the territory in which we operate. Ours is a gaze that looks closely but also knows how to look far. In the last two years we have been chosen by the European Commission, with the two LaC Europa and LaC Med projects, respectively to promote Cohesion Funds and Common Agricultural Policies with a project on the Mediterranean. This latest project, which is still underway and which will soon see an intense road show in the main universities of southern Italy, makes me particularly proud due to the great responsibility that has been entrusted to us as communicators and disseminators. A way to show that Calabria is not the periphery of Europe but a gateway to the Mediterranean. I invite all the readers of his prestigious magazine to follow and contribute to the success of the project through the dedicated portal www.lacmed.it.
Mediterraneo e Dintorni places the beauty of the places, but not only, in first place. Today we can travel a little, but as soon as we can do it again what is a place where you would like to return, and which one where you have never been and would you like to go?
Before the pandemic, my work forced me to travel intensively throughout the country. The Pubbliemme Group operates throughout Italy and the management of our services requires a periodic physical presence at least in the main Italian metropolitan areas. Lombardy and Calabria are the two main offices of our company and business trips are quite frequent on this axis. In my life I have traveled a lot and for long periods: Tunisia, Greece, Cyprus, England, France, Portugal, Ireland. But among all my experiences abroad, before throwing myself headlong into the world of work, immediately after graduation, I attended a Business School in the U.S.A. splitting between Boston and New York. This last experience was exciting for me. One place I would like to return to is New York; a place that I would like to visit as soon as the general conditions allow it is Japan. I am very fascinated by this oriental culture.
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