AL DÍA Women of Merit Honoree: Carmen Canales
Carmen Canales is one of the AL DÍA Women of Merit honorees, in the corporate field.
The AL DÍA Women of Merit event is a celebration of women who are breaking barriers and emerging in leadership positions across the nation.
Carmen Canales, Senior Vice President & Chief Human Resources Officer at Novant Health, is one of the honorees at the event, in the corporate field of education.
In the lead-up to the event, AL DÍA asked each of the honorees about their biggest career challenges and accomplishments, gender equality in their industries and their of advice for other women looking to make their way into their particular field of work.
Here are Carmen Canales' responses:
Assuming the role of Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer for Novant Health has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my career. The unique opportunity to join a mission-driven team of 37,000 individuals united in the battle against a global pandemic offers the tremendous responsibility of serving those who care for our communities. When the stakes are high, the work of the people and culture function becomes even more vital to the health of the organization.
Novant Health has provided a platform where I can give a voice to those who haven’t had the chance to be heard. Every day, I have the opportunity to recruit and retain exceptional talent who will make a difference in the lives of others.
A recent report by McKinsey and Company shows that healthcare continues to be one of the best industries for women; we make up approximately half of the industry’s workforce and experience a relatively limited gender gap in promotions. Novant Health is committed to supporting diverse leadership, including many women leaders throughout the organization, and I am inspired by the outstanding diversity our team represents. We are surrounded by remarkable people, and we must continue the intentional work to foster an environment where everyone can truly belong and succeed.
As leaders, we must work together to ensure people can bring their full selves to work, while having the opportunity to be resilient and spend time away as well. We need to understand and embrace how our strengths and experiences come together to shape well-rounded teams and transformative outcomes. We need to dare to dream, dare to give it a try, dare to ask, “how can I make this work?” and “who else needs to be included?”
It is also important to continue celebrating the exceptional achievements of women, as we build awareness of the incredible contributions of our current and future leaders. That is one of the reasons this recognition means so much to me, and I am thrilled to see other women being honored for their strong leadership.
As women, it is critical that we support each other, that we bring others along, and that we innovate and ideate. Our authentic voices and informed perspectives are needed throughout the workplace and the community. We should be persistent and confident self-advocates, who say yes to the opportunities we’re presented, without overthinking them or taking ourselves out of the game before we’re even in it. Our personal and professional dreams may be concurrent, or they may be consecutive, and either path can lead us to success.