Deborah Schembri

The winner of the 2019 Businesswoman of the Year Award, Deborah Schembri, says leadership, positive thinking and ambition are key characteristics that lead her in her role as CEO and Managing Director of STM Malta – one of the Mediterranean region’s biggest pension trustees and administrators.

“During one’s career, there are always challenging times and difficult moments, but you always have to remember your mission, from where you started, what you have achieved and who you would let down if you give up,” she said in a post shared on social media.

Within her capacity as a business leader, Ms Schembri says it’s crucial to visualise a positive outcome. “You have to learn to break down major challenges into smaller components, and tackle each component at a time. You have to learn as well to turn every challenge into an opportunity and set up new objectives so that yourself, the business and the people around you will succeed.”

Sharing her views on women taking up leadership roles, the CEO says a lot of work still has to be done for women to near the number of men occupying leadership roles in managing businesses.

“This is both because of glass ceiling and glass caging. Glass ceiling meaning that there is still the perception that the role model for a leadership role should be a man and, unfortunately, glass caging is where women do not take the risk in taking leadership roles.”

“If I had to give a five-step advice to young women aspiring to take an entrepreneurial role, I would suggest: unleash your ambition, recognise your value, do not lead from the crowd, refuse to tolerate the intolerable and embrace risk as a crucial part in your success.”

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