Q&A with Montse Montaner, Former Chief Sustainability Officer @ Novartis

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Thanks so much for taking the time to speak with us, Montse! Firstly, please introduce yourself!

I am Montse Montaner, a visionary and strategically driven C- suite executive with more than 3 decades of experience in the Pharma Industry delivering excellence in Quality, Operations and Sustainability. I have led high performance teams across the globe to build strong partnerships, promoting a result driven and inclusive culture to achieve strategic goals. I have been the first Chief Sustainability Officer at Novartis, designing and rolling out sustainability strategies to be a catalyst for a positive change.

Previous to this role, I have been acting as Chief Quality Officer, where with a transformational mindset and a strong future orientation, has proven success in elevating quality organisations from transactional to highly strategic, focusing on value creation and impact.

Previously, I have led strategic roles locally, regionally and corporativa across different countries. I am a pharmacist by education and I have been a professor at the University of Barcelona for more than 5 years.

What are you looking forward to at European Women in Technology?

It is a great opportunity for women to join forces and embrace a diverse and innovative leadership across the industry, learning and levering from each other to make an even bigger impact.

What can attendees expect from your session?

They will learn the importance of sustainability on a company’s strategy, not only now but in the long term. They will know how to design and operationalise it, highlighting how culture is important on the overall transformation, understanding what are the challenges companies are facing and how to overcome them.

When you think about our theme for 2023, The New Frontier, what excites you about the future in tech, business and/or leadership?

It is a paradigm shift and I am excited to be part of it, as it is an opportunity to make an impact and accelerate how companies need to reshape their strategy.

What would you say to your younger self about pursuing a career in tech and the future of women in tech?

It is an amazing opportunity to learn, grow as a leader but also to make a positive impact among ourselves. We need to learn from each other and support each other on this journey.

What do you see as the biggest challenge currently facing women in technology?

There is still a bias on how women lead, executes and embraces new ways of working. Mindset is the biggest limitation.

European Women in Tech is built on community; what advice would you give to our attendees on building your network and furthering your presence?

Do not be shy and keep and enlarge your network. It is so powerful in this community that we should not underestimate how much we can support each other.

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