Mayra González, a leader who brought laughter to the 18th floor of Nissan Global in Japan
Mayra González, Director of Global Sales at Nissan, teaches the Leadership and Empathy masterclass on the Dalia Empower continuing education platform.
MEXICO CITY. "They used to say that the 18th floor didn't seem like a company because there is camaraderie, because there is laughter, because there is noise. The boss approaches you. I sit with a staff member and ask them something," says Mayra González, the Mexican who holds the reins of Nissan's global sales, speaking about the hallmark that characterizes her leadership: empathy.
The executive arrived in July 2019 at Nissan's world headquarters in Yokohama after her appointment and leaving the position of President and General Director of Nissan Mexicana. She remembers that at first, her attitude of taking interest alarmed her collaborators in the Asian country, where the organizational culture is very hierarchical. "The boss is the boss and there’s not much contact between them," the executive explained in an interview with Dalia Empower.
So, when she sat with a team, people would ask her fearfully if something was wrong. Nothing was going on, though, aside from an executive approaching and taking an interest in them. They all ended up understanding and even learning from Mayra. “Now, it’s them who joke,” said the Director of Global Sales, who has a degree in Marketing from Anáhuac University, has studied at Harvard, and at the IPADE Business School.
Her career spans 23 years at Nissan, in three of which she led the company in Mexico, and she is not only widely known in the corporate world, but also admired, since her career began as a salesperson in an automotive agency. She later moved into Nissan's sales and financial area, and afterward became the first female member of the firm's committee in 50 years. She has played an active role as a mentor to other women by giving conferences and TED talks to promote female empowerment.
Her most recent initiative is alongside the continuing education platform Dalia Empower, where she teaches the Leadership and Empathy masterclass as part of the Dalia Masters program. The class is available from March 10 2022, online and on-demand.
In an interview with Dalia -minutes before starting the filming of her master class- she mentioned that she likes to know who her collaborators are, and that is why she approaches them empathically and away from rigidity and imposition. She says that her two principles are "being close to people and having fun,” and adds: "I work with people from everywhere and, in the end, we are people, and it’s fine.” "Yo soy de las que me río fuerte, de las que hablo fuerte, de las que les hace bromas. Tengo un humor [...] ellos se me quedaban viendo como: 'Esta loca'. Pero al final, han aprendido. Ahora ya se divierten con todas las cosas que les digo", menciona a News+Media, el micrositio de información y noticias de Dalia.
"I'm one of those people who laugh loudly, who talk loudly, who makes jokes. I have a sense of humor [...] they used to stare at me like: 'She's crazy.' But in the end, they've learned. Now they have fun with everything I say to them," she mentions to News+Media, Dalia's news and information microsite.
The 3 values she learned in Japan
About her almost three years of residence in Japan with her daughter and her husband, she claimed that the country is already a "second sky" for her, as the Japanese usually say; that it's like a second heaven, a second home. And she highlights that she has learned from Japanese culture the value of silence, the value of listening, and the value of being present.
In fact, when asked what the next step in her career is, she replies, "I like being present and doing it well,” for now. She adds that she’s walking "slowly, but surely,” and that she remains open to opportunities. But she warns that, in any case, any decision about her career is always a family decision. "My husband is 50% of the team," she noted.
With this masterclass, Mayra González joins other great instructors from Dalia Masters, a program of masterclasses on life skills (soft skills), which are more sought-after than ever in the labor market. Among them are resilience, creative thinking, communication, problem-solving, and collaboration.
Among the renowned Dalia Masters instructors are Jorge Mondragón and Cory Crespo, leaders of the Coloürs agency, specializing in creativity, marketing, and celebrity management; Hans Backhoff, CEO of Monte Xanic, Silvina Moschini, President of Transparent Business, and Billy and Fernando Rovzar, producers of the Netflix TV series Monarca and Control Z.