Travel Excellence in 4th Global Forum of Business for Gender Equality

Written by MJ Blanco

As part of Travel Excellence’s commitment with the gender equality and also as part of the experience the company have in this topic, we were invited to participate in the 4th Global Forum of Business for Gender Equality held in Santiago, Chile the 27th and 28th of February.

This global forum reunited different exhibitors sharing their knowledges and experiences concerning the gender equality efforts all around the world. The different panels were about the varied challenges and realities faced every day concerning the gender equality.

The objective here was to share experiences and bring possible solutions and ways to eradicate the differences between opportunities and fair treatment of women in the different life ambiances, to decrease gender violence and to create more conscience about the hard reality of women all over the globe.

In this occasion, Travel Excellence were represented by Mr. José Alex López, which has a lot of experience in the subject since the company started working in order to be the first company in Costa Rica to get the Equality Gender Mark, gathered by Institute of Technical Standards of Costa Rica (Inteco) and lead by the Women’s National Institute (INAMU).

Mr. López participated in the third lab of the afternoon of Wednesday 28th, February. The panel was named as “Solutions to promote work-life balance with co-responsibility and the eradication of gender-based violence and sexual harassment in the workplace.” Here, they discussed the importance of create conscience about the challenges that are still there to face in terms of a safe and equal workplace between men and women.

The panel was shared with varied companies and organizations from different parts of the world: Scotiabank from Chile, the Avon Foundation from Argentina, PEMEX from Mexico, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Agency for Agriculture Communication and Information (AGRINFOR) from Cuba, and HarassMap from Egypt. The moderation of the panel was in charge of the National Service for Women and Gender Equality (SERNAMEG) of the Republic of Chile too.

This cultural convergence enriched a lot the participation of each one of the exhibitors as it showed the different realities of the topic in each one of the countries represented; the efforts made, the path traveled with its advances and its current challenges, and, of course, the possible solutions and ideas to reduce the inequality gap that women face in the day by day around the globe in the different societies.

The company’s participation, as a representation for Costa Rica, had the chance to share in the panel with those great exhibitors and also expand the knowledges in the area.  Our representative there for this occasion was Mr. Jose Alex Lopez, who was in charge of exposing the advances made in terms of gender equality and equal payment and opportunities for both, men and women working in Travel Excellence.

The panel highlighted how people can incorporate gender perspectives in the design of product and services and in the marketing and advertising areas, through the inclusion of women-owned businesses in supply chains and more. The central topic was to expose how the most advanced industries are building different transformational solutions which accelerate gender equality along downstream and upstream value chains.

Gender equality in the world of business depends on much more than human resources management and it must be addressed across different operations. Knowing this, during the intervention, Travel Excellence shared among other topics, its experience of being the first certified enterprise in achieving the Gender Equality Mark in Costa Rica.

Travel Excellence looked for this certification in order to ensure a set of more dignified and fair conditions for the totality of its collaborators, and the company underwent a process of implementing the measures and changes required to adapt its organizational culture and the structure of their functions.

The company not only have been focused on the fair salary and granting the equal payment for men and women working with them; but also, they have been working to cover all the possible aspects of gender equality in the actual employment reality according to the Costa Rican society and its current needs.

Travel Excellence is not as big as other companies are in the country but that has not been an impediment to be committed with the topic. Hard work and constant improvement permitted that the different parts involved achieved great internal changes, benefiting all the members of the organization. Different good practices to ensure the life quality of its collaborators have been part of the last changes, without distinction of gender, age, social condition, beliefs, etc.

Considering this, the company has exceeded most of the conditions stated, and it has also been an example, nationally and abroad, for other companies. In 2011 Travel Excellence started with the great and strategic challenge of making varied internal improvements in order to stablish and follow good internal practices for a more comprehensive approach of the gender equality.

Then, in July 2016 Travel Excellence signed -along with other 45 companies all of them conscient about ethical issues- the commitment to certify themselves with the Standard Management System for Gender Equality in the Workplace (SIGIG, for its acronym in Spanish). This is regulated with the national standard INTE 38-01-01, gathered by Institute of Technical Standards of Costa Rica (Inteco) and lead by the Women’s National Institute (INAMU).

Since then, the challenges have been huge and have involved an awareness and good acceptance of all the company's collaborators and also other enterprises and colleagues. In order to achieve this, the company improved its human resources management system, with a lot of different enhancements and a clearer vision of the gender perspective, going beyond, and showing that it is possible to promote an equitable workplace for all genders.

Travel Excellence is honored when sharing with exhibitors from all over the globe, as they can share with different countries and cultures what it means to be the first company in Costa Rica recognized under this standard, and the fact of being recognized for its commitment to improving the conditions of the workplace helps the company have a stronger motivation to keep working that way.

Feel free to leave a comment or a question if you want to know more. We will be more than glad of getting in touch with you!


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