Sandoz’s Global Women in Leadership (WiL) Network supports the development and retention of all women at Sandoz to reach their full potential. The global network spans across all regions and business units to focus on four key areas: career development, networking, mentoring and community. Activities include events, discussions, webinars and networking sessions around relevant topics.
Sandrine Piret-Gerard, Head of Sandoz Germany and Hexal
What advice would you give your 20-year old self? Try to have some fun, don’t be so tough with yourself, life is about to get a lot more challenging!
What advice would you give to a young woman entering into the workplace for the first time? Always be passionate about what you do. Don’t do something because it looks good on your resume, do it because you love it. If you don’t love it, change it or leave it.
Who do you think of when you think of someone successful and why? Mother Theresa. She was successful because she was always fair to her purpose and made big things happen by following that purpose. Success is subjective but can only happen if one serves one’s purpose.
If you could write anything on a poster and hang it in a city centre what would it be? A quote attributed to Mark Twain: “They did not know it was impossible, so they did it.” I love people for whom the sky is the limit, who’re dreaming and make their dream happen.
Who inspires you and why? Mother Theresa. This little woman had a purpose in life and always followed it whatever happened. She said “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” Each of us has a role to play to make change happen. Each of us has to be the change we wish to see.
What advice would you give your 20-year old self? Look for earlier opportunities for internships to start gaining working experience and understanding of different industries. And actually some honest advice on a personal note – I would tell myself to consider having children earlier! Of course it is different for everyone, but this would be the advice I would give myself. Career can wait a bit!
What advice would you give to a young woman entering into the workplace for the first time? Try to find yourself a good mentor and a role model within the company. Some people have a tremendous gift for mentoring others, and the earlier you start learning how to benefit from mentoring – the better it is. Mentoring provides a great learning opportunity both for the mentee and the mentor. Those who put their heart and mind into it have a lot to gain.
Who do you think of when you think of someone successful and why? I think of someone who is not only successful in their profession, but also contributes to making the world a better place outside of work. Fortunately, there are many people who do that. Natalia Vodyanova, a Russian top model, with her Naked Hearts Foundation helping disadvantaged children is one example.
If you could write anything on a poster and hang it in a city centre what would it be? It would be a poster reminding people to help others, even if it is something small – like helping elderly neighbors or saying a word of encouragement to someone who needs it…the impact we can make with small things is often underestimated.
Who inspires you and why? My mother inspires me. She keeps challenging both herself and myself with new projects and ideas. I admire her creativity, speed and ability to do so many things and still have time to enjoy life. My children are very lucky to have such a dynamic grandmother!