May 18, 2024

In it to WINiT

We chat with SilverDoor’s Senior Vice President of Business Development, Pauline Houston, about becoming WINiT’s new EMEA Chairperson

Can you give us some background on your involvement with the WINiT initiative within GBTA?

Certainly! I’ve been involved with GBTA for over 20 years now. Initially, I participated in their conventions and meetings to expand my network and conduct business. As time passed and my experience grew, I felt compelled to give back. I started with mentorships and became involved in various committees, including the European Accommodation Committee and the Education and Development Committee. When WINiT joined GBTA a few years ago, I saw an opportunity to expand its offerings, particularly in Europe and APAC.

What is the purpose of WINiT?

WINiT aims to drive positive change and career mobility for women in the travel industry through mentoring, networking and educational opportunities. It’s about empowering women, building confidence and creating supportive environments for their professional growth.

Why do you believe initiatives like WINiT are still needed?

Despite progress, there’s still an imbalance in leadership positions and challenges like the gender pay gap persist. Initiatives like WINiT provide vital support, guidance and opportunities for women to navigate these obstacles and advance in their careers.

Is imposter syndrome primarily a female phenomenon?

While both men and women can experience imposter syndrome, it seems to be more common among women. However, it’s important to recognise that anyone can struggle with feelings of inadequacy or self-doubt.

What are your personal goals as the Chairperson of the new WINiT’s EMEA chapter?

Over the next two years, I aim to establish a solid foundation for WINiT in Europe, ensuring strong leadership, active committees, and meaningful initiatives. I want to set up the chapter for continued success beyond my tenure.

What personal qualities do you bring to your role?

I bring a sense of urgency and a focus on action. I believe in getting things done efficiently and effectively, without unnecessary delays.

What advice would you give to men on being good allies to women?

Treat women with the same respect and consideration you would want for your female loved ones. Avoid tokenism and ensure that support is genuine and based on merit.

Is there a call to action for those interested in getting involved with WINiT?

Absolutely! We’re seeking committee members, particularly from mainland Europe, and male allies supporting our mission. Visit our website to learn more and get involved!