Putting the spotlight on our workforce, The Women Powering ArganoUV showcases the professional and personal pathways of women at ArganoUV. We uncover daily motivations and personal passions, first company impressions and important career milestones. Today, we meet Emma Saravia, Head of People.
In what year did you start working at ArganoUV?
I started working at ArganoUV in 2014, when we were still UVSouthSourcing.
The only person who was there the first day that I arrived at the office and is still on the day to day is JJ, who was listening to Red Fang – if my memory doesn’t fail me.
What would you say are the key factors that helped you achieve your role at ArganoUV?
Resilience and adaptability. UVSouthSourcing, United Virtualities, or ArganoUV, has always been an organization in constant change and development. Being open to change and having the strength to face the unknowns you typically face when something is evolving, have given me the tools to understand which qualities and abilities of mine are most useful to support the muscle or organ that is working the most at that specific moment of growth of ArganoUV as a company.
What are you most proud of at work?
We always talk about this with the People Team. Nothing gives us more satisfaction than hearing about the success of someone in our team at ArganoUV. In our role, it is inevitable to feel part of the reason why many people are part of this company, since we had the honor of accompanying so many of them in the process of joining the company, and we have the possibility to look after and provide support to everyone on a day-to-day basis. Knowing that they are succeeding and growing in their roles, or that they feel happy being part of this family, is extremely rewarding.
What personal value/talent do you think has led you to be who you are today?
More than talents, I have an addiction to solving problems. There are also some decisions that I make every day that shape the way I work individually and as a team.
– Sense of urgency.
– Will and discipline.
– Empathy with others, understanding that everyone fights daily battles that we do not know about.
– The power to always ask for and offer help.
Do you have any hidden talents outside of work?
I am a compulsive organizer. I have spreadsheets and timelines for each trip, for each family initiative, each home renovation. Obviously, I am pretty good at finding suppliers for everything, it is part of my job and I have incorporated it into my personal life. I have endless lists of plumbers, hairdressers, tow trucks, etc. My phone’s address book is pretty much a shortlist of the yellow pages.
How would you define success? What does success mean to you?
For me, success is tied to “having a good day.” Happiness, as an attainable concept, is the collection of “good days.” Having a good day is impacted by many variables. There are variables linked to emotional/affective aspects and others linked to motivation and achievements. And I believe that good days are accidental – only if one is distracted.
There are a few key things that I try to be mindful of in order to have an active role in creating “good days” for myself.
What did I do in the past so that my day is good today? Understanding what my role was, in terms of creating a context that makes me perceive my reality as positive, allows me to be able to repeat those things that make “today” a particularly good day.
What can I do today to make sure “Future Emma” has a good day tomorrow? This point is key for me. Self-love should not be a mystical concept. For me, it has to do with making the “present self” leave presents for “future self.” Sometimes we do things for others that we wouldn’t understand how to provide for ourselves. For me personally, seeing it this way (past/present/future self) allows me to better understand how to be kind with myself through gestures, which sometimes is easier to give others.
What distinctive qualities/skills do you bring to your role as a manager?
I think that the most valuable thing that one can contribute as a manager is the notion of commitment and responsibility with the fact that one, in some way, is providing a model and leaving a mark on others. We all replicate portions of role models that we have learned to some extent (parents, managers, partners, etc.). I try to consciously replicate the things that I have admired the most about my mentors, since they played a very important role in the discovery of my personal calling and in how I live many aspects of my life today.
What is a highlight of ArganoUV as a company?
Definitely our people-centered culture. Almost all people need to work – both on an economic and psychological level. But not everyone is lucky enough to be able to work with a group of people where the human factor is so relevant, where everyone will always look for ways to help and encourage others, and where an individual’s success is a shared success.
I turn on the computer every day, and after almost 8 years, no matter how many hours I spend Zooming, every day I am thrilled to be part of this family.
I believe that few people are lucky enough to feel that “work” is not only a duty and obligation, but a space where you get to share with people you hold dear.
I think it is essential to continue to foster kindness and closeness in our team, so that no matter how much we grow, the small details that we can exchange in each interaction always lift our spirits, and in the midst of so many challenges and endless to-do lists, the feeling that prevails after shutting down our computer every day is “today was a good day.”