We are highlighting a previous episode of the ¿Quién Tú Eres? podcast, where we explore the conflict we often face between "professionalism" & being our authentic selves.
This episode features the first TV interview Pabel Martinez had for Plurawl on the local news station BronxNet TV on their OpenTuesday segment. And in this short interview, Pabel discusses why he launched Plurawl and why a lifestyle brand that redefines professionalism for the Latinx community is needed now more than ever.
These are some of the episode highlights:
“We have been taught that many parts of our identity are not professional." -Pabel Martinez
Growing up, Pabel saw his mom blow-drying her hair to make it straight every morning to go to work, and his grandfather used to tell him that no CEOs had beards, tattoos, or do-rags. And while his family was only trying to protect him from negative perceptions, he grew up to believe that being professional meant hiding certain parts of himself.
Fortunately, he eventually learned that the true meaning of professionalism is the capacity or aptitude to perform an activity, which had nothing to do with how he looked. And realizing that there is social conditioning about professionalism led Pabel to create a lifestyle brand that called our attention to the ways we hide our identity. With this brand, he intends to help redefine professionalism and start more conversations about authenticity.
“It is instrumental to company success to hire diverse talent.” -Pabel Martinez
Many companies start hiring diverse talent once they have made it big and have been able to reach a certain amount of revenue. But by then, the culture in the company is not as inclusive, which means that when they decide to include a more diverse group of people, issues may arise with professionalism and how someone culturally diverse shows up.
For this reason, Pabel believes that if companies want to be more successful, they should start hiring diverse talent early on, from the very start of the company, as a business imperative instead of as a social good. Because not only do they come up with the best products, but many studies show that diverse talent drives better performance in a company.
“How you really advance is by building relationships with senior leaders.” -Pabel Martinez
When we want to advance in a corporation, we tend to assimilate and hide certain aspects of ourselves because we receive micro-aggressions from our peers. And when we observe leadership, we often see behaviors that we do not find relatable. And while our skillsets can help us in our career advancement, building relationships with leadership plays an important role.
As a result, we do not show them our authentic selves because we believe that being ourselves will not help us get to where we want or need to be. But finding the balance between authenticity and putting our best foot forward is key to not abandoning ourselves in the process and forgetting who we truly are.
Pabel challenges the stereotypes, raises awareness, and inspires us to be our authentic selves!
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