gmf|us|en|company|newsroom|inspiring-women-at-gm-financial en_us en-us
Back to top
GMF team members Daniela Maria Cantu Rodriguez and Eric Robinson pose for pictures outdoors.

Celebrating and Supporting Women in the Workplace

In celebration of Women’s History Month, I sat down with the co-chairs of a GM Financial employee resource group that promotes and celebrates women in the workplace: Women’s Inspiration Network (WIN). WIN is just one of the many Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiatives committed to supporting and empowering all employees at GM Financial.

Erica Robinson is a Senior Project Manager and works with the business on financial reporting projects. She’s been with WIN since it started in 2017. She led the Membership and Development Committee in 2021, was co-chair in 2022 and currently serves as chair of WIN’s North America chapter.

Daniela Maria Cantu Rodriguez is a Team Lead in the Servicing department and helps customers navigate challenges with their accounts. She served on WIN’s Networking Committee before being selected co-chair of WIN’s North America chapter.

The group’s leaders enthusiastically shared with me the mission of WIN and their plans to increase membership. Here’s how they responded to my top questions.

What is the mission of WIN, and what do meetings consist of?

Erica passionately describes WIN’s mission as “inspiring women to be better, inspiring women to be competitive and inspiring women to be empowered to take a look at owning their own development.” Ask any member and they’ll agree with her that it’s about giving women the encouragement and tools for “taking their careers into their hands and making something happen for themselves.” Daniela confidently distills the group’s purpose into a simple sentence: “It’s all about promoting women in the workplace.”

To that end, the committees at WIN bring in different guest speakers to talk to members about their careers, balancing life and work in a hybrid work environment, handling finances, overcoming biases, and the list goes on. WIN’s goal is for the community of women to envision and imagine their careers progressing at GM Financial.

Is WIN only for women? How has the organization been working to incorporate diverse members?

One of the goals at the top of Erica’s list for 2023 is doubling the number of male members. She says that allyship can help propel us further and we should “encourage men to help us grab a seat at the table and invite us over.”

She celebrates GM Financial’s goal to have 45% women and 35% professionals of color in senior leadership positions by 2025. “We need to stay positive,” says Erica, “and keep striving until the needle is where it needs to be.” And that needle has gotten closer in the last few months as the company has promoted and hired two women into executive leadership positions.

Daniela emphasized the importance of learning from other strong women and men. “By inviting men to take a more active role in participating on committees and speaking at meetings,” she shares, “all members get to see things from a different perspective and gain insight on another way of looking at things.”

Having the support and involvement of men can help women achieve more by sharing their viewpoints and encouraging women to take charge. Daniela says, “It also goes both ways because all employees can flourish by understanding the needs of women in the workplace.”

Community is a pillar of WIN. Why is community so important and how does it add to the culture of the organization?

Daniela, who works in Collections, talked about how volunteering and taking an active role in helping the community shows we’re not just a company that finances vehicles — it’s part of how we earn customers for life. One of the challenges her department faces is earning trust over the phone. “Being a part of the community shows we understand different situations and helps us promote that trust,” she says.

Erica says it’s important for WIN to give back and take part in the community because it’s what makes us humans. “We can’t forget what people have done for us who have helped us get where we are today.” Giving back, she says, is a way to recognize and reciprocate that support.

What is WIN doing to overcome challenges?

One of Daniela’s goals is increasing membership across North America. She recognizes that having employees scattered across different locations and working remotely can create a physical barrier that stops some employees from feeling involved. To remedy this, she is being innovative with using different communication channels to expand WIN’s reach and grow the network to help make employees feel valued beyond just their project contributions.

“The beauty of WIN is you get to relate to so many people from different departments, at different levels, with colleagues who work in small groups, and those who work individually,” Daniela shares. Developing those relationships is one way companies can create an environment and culture that people really want to work in and excel in.

Providing helpful content that resonates with the audience and keeps them engaged can be a challenge no matter the organization. Erica detailed how intentional leadership is in listening to the topics members want to hear more about. She takes a servant leadership role and is always thinking ahead and looking for guest speakers to create a network of women who inspire women.

Key takeaways

Drawn into conversation with each of these women, I couldn’t resist asking them for some of their favorite words to describe WIN. This is what I learned:

  • WIN is here to inspire women, empower us to take charge, and promote greatness within ourselves and our peers.
  • WIN is about supporting progress, while respecting diverse perspectives.
  • WIN is about serving communities, and its co-chairs share that it’s rewarding to be both a member and a leader in the organization.
  • WIN is evidence of how important and powerful it is to innovate to create a network working toward a common goal.

This year, WIN hopes to forge a stronger partnership with other employee resource groups like YounGen and Working Parents. It also wants to better support the Global Mentorship Program and continue to increase its male membership. I invite you to learn more about GM Financial’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts to see how you can help inspire others. If this sounds like a company culture you want to be a part of, check out our open positions.

GM Financial provides employee resource groups for both our global and North America offices. We currently have WIN-International Operations and WIN-North America chapters that support the recruitment, retention and development of talented women across the organization.

Nicole Mayer
By Nicole Mayer, GM Financial

Nicole Mayer is a whisk-taker with a fondness for desserts. From baking to organizing, she’s motivated by trying new things and sharing her knowledge. When she’s not in the kitchen rocking out to ‘80s music, you’ll find her serving up aces on the tennis court.

Related Articles

Honoring AAPI Heritage Month

AAPI Heritage Month: One GM Financial Team Member Is Living His American Dream

In celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, GM Financial team member Stephen shares his remarkable story of life in Vietnam and the U.S.

Meet Stephen
Photo of Jamie in her uniform and another photo of her standing next to her son at a ceremony

Taking Flight: Air Force Master Sgt. Welcomed as Inaugural Hiring Our Heroes Fellow

GM Financial expanded its support for military service members by welcoming Jamie Johnson as the company’s inaugural corporate fellow of the Hiring Our Heroes program.

/content/gmf/en_us/search-results.html /content/gmf/en_us/company/newsroom/inspiring-women-at-gm-financial/jcr:content true /en-us/resources/lease-end/get-going.html /en-us/resources/lease-end/get-inspected.html /en-us/resources/lease-end/get-started.html /en-us/resources/lease-end.html