Being a woman is not a disadvantage: Nadia Montes de Oca

Upon receiving the CFA certification, Chartered Financial Analyst, one of the 43 women in Mexico with this certification, Nadia Montes de Oca, CFA and Portfolio Manager at Franklin Templeton Investments, received comments such as “being a woman you did it”, although always accompanied by a “Congratulations”, the comment felt like “being a woman is a disadvantage”, but she affirms that it is not, “being a woman does not diminish my abilities nor is it a disadvantage for the financial world”.

Montes de Oca graduated from ITAM with a degree in actuary, and went on to work at Franklin Templeton Mexico, one of the largest independent asset managers in the world, and received the CFA certification, offered by the CFA Institute to financial analysts who manage to complete a series of three exams, it is considered a standard certification to facilitate entry to the largest firms in the asset management market.

“When I received my certification, I felt that it was a great merit and I felt more prepared, and it is part of this development that I have had, to have more confidence in myself and in my work. In other areas they told me ‘congratulations, you made it as a woman’ and I was surprised that I no longer felt that the woman factor favored me and I felt so comfortable with myself, ”she stated.

“By reminding me ‘you are a woman’ it was an impact and it opened my eyes to the fact that since I did it, I also have to do something to approach other women and tell them what they need and how I can help you. It was an awakening of what I can achieve and that we can help other women to also begin to develop in their personal fields, ”she added.

She assured that the fact of being a woman should stop being seen as a disadvantage. “We have to stop seeing that what is feminine is inferior and that being a woman has disadvantages,” she said. “We have to start seeing what we can bring differently to my workplace and the whole environment, and take advantage of what we have to transmit it to society, and show that good financial results can be achieved,” she said in an interview.

He clarified that the CFA certification has few analysts received, until 2020 there were only 365 people, of which only 43 women. However, it is a certification that takes 3 years to achieve and in 2017 there were only 14 women.

In the United States and Canada there are more members of both men and women, and “in Mexico there is still a lack of incentives for investment professionals to obtain the CFA certification from Chartered Financial Analyst,” said Nadia Montes de Oca.

lagging points

She mentioned that there are three factors that have delayed the inclusion of women in the workplace, and highlighted that the implementation of ESG criteria has promoted the environmental, social and governance movement.

“I think that since girls the career of finance, mathematics, statistics, and others has not been encouraged, the preference is towards other careers. By not having enough women in the career and with the right preparation for the workplace, then you have a smaller base.”

Another factor, he added, is that there are still many stereotypes, with gender roles that have been marked. The issue of vocational guidance should be considered, knowing how the panorama is presented to them and how the area is described.

“There are few female role models, in my case, the president of Franklin Templeton and the second in command are women, and they are the ones who inspire women to keep moving forward. It is something that is still missing in Mexico, highlighting more outstanding women, ”she said and highlighted that it is other factors that could improve the participation of women in the financial world.

“Before, the work environment, which had been dominated by men, seemed unfriendly to inclusion, to aspire to have 50% of the workforce, it is teamwork, both us and the companies, not tolerating discrimination, abuse, harassment. , and have clear procedures to follow up and continue the detected cases,” said Montes de Oca.

Labor flexibility also represents a factor for women to have a balance between personal life and work life. In addition, equal conditions, maternity and paternity leave also favor labor inclusion.

“It is not only favoring women, but favoring everyone so that it is truly equitable. Both in flexibility of schedules and in benefits and permits, “said the interviewee.

The company must define a position in such a way that it remains neutral, with neutral words, assign a salary, regardless of whether it is a man or a woman, that will be their salary, and then candidates are received for the vacancy.

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