But who are we? Who are these young leaders Coca-Cola is so generously supporting?
The Global Shapers Community is an initiative of the World Economic Forum. It’s the first of its kind, not only because it’s a grassroots program, but because it opens the door to the outside perspective of young, committed and exceptional leaders to leverage resources from the multiplicity of stakeholders that compose the Davos family. More importantly, it goes beyond the power of the individual and promotes collaboration and common purpose.
As the representative of the Mexico City Global Shapers Hub, I had the incredible opportunity – and big responsibility – to moderate a panel with Muhtar Kent, Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, Bea Perez, Chief Sustainability Officer of The Coca-Cola Company, and José Antonio Fernández, CEO of Coca-Cola FEMSA, in the company of additional Coca-Cola leaders and 49 other Global Shapers from around the world. It was a fun and exciting opportunity to learn from both business leaders and my peers.
I want to touch on two topics covered during the panel: leadership and the importance of women as leaders. It is worth pointing out that ours was one of the few sessions in Davos with equal representation of men and women: on the panel, among the Coca-Cola leaders and among the Global Shapers, which is the only World Economic Forum community with equal gender representation. Something to strive for!
We all know that leadership is hard to define, hard to measure and hard to experience, so the insights of the panelists were of great value given the leaders’ trajectories and repeated experiences of success. Leadership is a journey, and Muhtar emphasized the need to not only achieve success, but to repeat it. This is key not just in our professional lives in terms of always iterating and improving our goals, but also in our personal lives. We should always see life as a journey composed of many successes, and one that has to be fun.
Leadership is also about teamwork. As the saying goes: “If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together.” José Antonio noted that great teams are created through trust and commitment that is earned, not imposed.
Our role in Davos? To allow for serendipity and build as many relationships as possible by meeting as many people as we can.
My goal? To return to Mexico with 49 new friends, supporters, colleagues and peers.
To close, I’d like to share how excited and impressed I am by the work Coca-Cola is doing to enable the economic empowerment of women through their 5by20 initiative, and by their efforts to increase female leadership within the Company. Bea explained how Coca-Cola is not only ensuring there are more women in leadership positions, but that they have the necessary skills and are empowered to be successful and stay in those positions.
This hits close to home because of the work I do with women entrepreneurs at Crea in Mexico. Women are the hidden engines of economic growth, and I want to ensure they develop and acquire the necessary skills and tools they need to become leaders who contribute to increasing income and job opportunities in their communities.
Leticia Mariana Jáuregui Casanueva is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers Hub in Mexico City. She is the co-founder and creator of Crea, which seeks to promote women’s economic empowerment through micro-enterprise development activities in marginalized communities in Mexico. Since 2008, Crea has worked with and benefited close to 1,200 women and nearly 2,500 members of their families and communities. Follow her on Twitter @ljauregui.