Q&A with Rita TOUALY
Exclusive Trusted Magazine Q&A with Rita TOUALY
How could you describe your career path in a few words?
I would describe my career path as one that has been rich in learning, challenges, and most importantly, gaining extraordinary experiences. I had the chance to start my professional career with understanding and listening bosses who facilitated my integration. As I was still a student when I started working, they allowed me to continue my studies by allowing me to go to classes sometimes at service hours. It was a real chance and I took this opportunity to finish my Bachelor's degree in Political and Organizational Communication and then continue with an MBA in Project Management. Today, when I look back on my career so far, I am proud of myself and my work, even though I am aware that the best is yet to come.
What was your most challenging experience and it has changed your mindset?
I wouldn't say "difficult", but my most challenging experience was my first professional experience. This could be explained by the fact that I started my career very young at the age of 19, and I especially started in a technical field, totally unknown to me and in which I had no experience, insurance. I started my learning on the job, with very complex basic notions for me at the beginning. But little by little I started to get my bearings, then to develop solid knowledge and skills in this field. It was a real challenge, but I took it with brio for the greatest satisfaction of the people who trusted me by hiring me. This experience was a very good basis for the rest of my career.
When you get surprised by unusual or uncertain contexts, what do you think?
When I find myself in such a situation I first keep calm, without stressing I quickly think about how I should react to this situation. Sometimes, the best way to handle a situation or make a decision is to stay calm. It's not always easy, but it's possible with a little practice. You have to develop instinctive reflexes that come out in such situations. Personally, I have been able to develop the ability to think quickly in sudden or uncertain situations. This allows me to know how to react efficiently and prudently on the spot.
Self-control and reflective reactivity are inescapable personality traits that every person should have and develop in a world as changing as ours. It allows one to better live in society and to better appreciate the situations that arise.
What’s the key success factor for a female entrepreneur in cross-cultural context based on your experience?
The key factors for me, according to my experience, are dynamism and networking. A woman entrepreneur has to be dynamic enough to get out of her comfort zone and rub shoulders with the outside world, with people who could help her gain knowledge, experience and even opportunities. And believe me, this should not only apply to women entrepreneurs. Most women entrepreneurs also face a lack of confidence. They don't really believe in their abilities firstly because they are women, and also because entrepreneurship is seen as one of the most difficult paths to professional success. These women, for the most part, are not even aware of their intellectual potential and what they are capable of achieving. This is also where training is important. It is not only for students or civil servants, but also for entrepreneurs. Women entrepreneurs need training, even education in entrepreneurial life, management and personal development. A woman entrepreneur who wishes to succeed must first know herself, master her field of activity and open herself to the business world without any complexity.
Based on your experience, what’s the key success factor for a female leader/manager?
In my experience, a woman who wants to be successful must have a vision, know what she wants and where she wants to be, and have short, medium and long-term goals. Then, she must develop her self-confidence capacity because it is very important for her personal development. Finally, for me, a woman who wishes to succeed must be strongly determined and in perpetual search of knowledge to sharpen her skills and assets.