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The past few years have seen a huge increase in the number of companies around the world celebrating International Women's Day. APRIL International Care is no exception and we are happy to take this occasion, every year, to celebrate the women behind APRIL. Today, we are inviting our regional CEO Romain Di Meglio to discuss equality and gender diversity within the workplace. 

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Over your 5 years as a CEO for APRIL Asia, you have hired a majority of female top managers. Why this choice?

We run operations in 7 countries, with staff speaking 18 languages and coming from 13 different countries. Diversity is part of our DNA, not only regarding genders. That being said, we have achieved great numbers in terms of gender diversity with 66% of our regional staff being women – from entry-level employees to senior managers. This is something we must continuously work on. For example, despite having a majority of women as employees, if we don’t keep pushing for diversity and empowering women, then the glass ceiling will not disappear on its own. We make sure everyone gets the same opportunities to evolve within the company regardless of their gender.

60% of APRIL's top managers are women. How do you think this impacts the dynamic of the company?

It is hard to isolate what is linked to the gender balance from simply the mix of individuals coming together. I am lucky that the team is very much geared at working collectively and building up pragmatic solutions. Compassion both for other team members and stakeholders plays a big role as well. As anyone else, we have our own set of issues, often around communication, cultural discrepancies...

How does APRIL encourage gender equality in the company? 

We need diversity, not only regarding genders. It all starts at the recruitment stage. When we interview new candidates, there is no difference whether they are a man or a woman. We make a point to give the same chances, the same opportunities, along with the same benefits. Essentially look for what they would bring to the team and to the company and in return, what the company could bring to them.

It naturally forces us to anticipate on potential salary discrepancies, cultural issues and gender unbalance. Eventually, it levels the playing field so we don’t have to treat women any differently than any other employee.

What would you say to any woman wanting to come work for APRIL?

We are far from perfect, yet we try to make a difference in everything we do. Whether it is providing equal opportunities, ensuring a respectful, challenging and motivating work environment or making insurance easy. There is a lot to do within a pretty fun team and our company is constantly growing. We are always looking for new talents to join us in Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia and further afield in Europe and the Americas. Come meet the team, they are our best advocates!

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