Interview with Clara Serrano from the Euroairlines group
Updated: Sep 19
This month we begin interviews with women who develop their profession within the Euroairlines Group. Today we interviewed Clara Serrano, who currently works in the airline operations consulting part of the Euroairlines Group.
What motivated you to look for work in this sector and how did you get to where you are now?
There are two milestones that led me to want to be part of this sector, the most important is that since I was little, the world of aviation has caught my attention. Like an airport where so many people gather, so many flights, it manages to be “organized”, that the planes take off on time or why the airlines decide to fly to one place or another. And secondly, the possibility it offers worldwide, you can find companies related to the aeronautical sector anywhere in the world.
I think that, in part thanks to that interest, that desire, I have managed to get to where I am now. It is true that once I finished my degree I continued training, but without that spark it would not have been possible to get where I am now.
How would you describe the work environment in the airline sector? What do you like most about working on it?
A big family. It is the phrase that best describes the airline sector. It is striking how being a sector that covers so much (airlines, air safety, air navigation, maintenance, airports,...) it can be a big family. What it has shown me in these years is that at some point in your professional career you can meet up with old colleagues, bosses, acquaintances.
That is one of the things I like the most, when changing jobs it is sad to leave colleagues who become friends, but in the end you know that you will meet them again in other companies. Currently I am very grateful for the work environment that exists in all the companies of the Euroairlines Group, the colleagues, international projects, the day to day life is very exciting and I am very happy in the company.
What is your opinion on the representation of women in the airline industry in general?
I think that today women are taking a very important role in the industry. Whether through associations such as “Ellas Vuelan Alto (EVA)”, of which we are delighted to be a part, where they hold talks about the sector, both on a technical and personal level and which allows us to meet people from all over Spain; as through many other women who, with effort, manage to demonstrate day by day what they are capable of and thus be able to open the doors to new generations. To all those women, THANK YOU.
How can more women be encouraged to consider a career in the airline sector?
Just let them know that they should not be “afraid”, it does not matter what sex you are if you do what you like. If you are really passionate about the airline industry, go ahead, don't think about it. I am sure that this way they will be able to go very far and grow both personally and professionally.
What is the biggest challenge facing the airline industry today?
Environmental sustainability, growing awareness of climate change translates into greater pressure on the industry to reduce its carbon footprint. A few months ago I had the opportunity to attend the II Climate Summit in the aeronautical sector organized by COIAE (Official College of Aeronautical Engineers of Spain) where they presented different research that was being carried out to reduce the environmental impact of the aeronautical sector.
Have you seen any examples of female leadership in the airline industry that have inspired or motivated your own career?
Yes, throughout my working life I have been lucky enough to meet several women in management positions who are an example to follow. Seeing how they are able to combine management positions with personal life and do it in a way that what they transmit is energy and passion for what they do has managed to mark my career and encourage me to continue improving and growing in this sector.
Could you share a project you have worked on that has had a significant impact on the airline industry or the company you work for?
Just two weeks ago we managed to finish the implementation of the CAE Operating System at Iberojet. It has been a long road with many challenges that the entire Euroairlines Group team has faced. Finally we can say that it has been a success and that every effort has its reward. At this point I would like to make a special mention of our colleague Luis Anaya who unfortunately left us a few months away from finishing the project.
What advice would you give to young women considering a career in this sector?
If the aeronautical sector really catches your attention, go ahead! I think that today it is a sector that offers a lot of variety in its jobs and that means that there is always one that best fits what you are looking for. They will soon realize that there are many more women in their situation.
Do you think there is any difference in job opportunities between men and women in the airline industry? Because?
Today I believe that thanks to the efforts that women in this sector have made for many years, there is not a big difference in terms of job opportunities. The number of women who enter this sector each year continues to grow, in the same way that we can see how more and more women get management positions and demonstrate, as I have said before, that it is feasible to be a very good professional in your job as well as manage your personal life. The important thing is not the gender.
How would you describe the evolution of the role of women in the airline sector over time?
It was typical to see women in aviation only as flight or ground stewards; women were rarely seen in technical positions, much less management positions. Starting in the 1970s, the role of women evolved to those more technical positions until we reached where we are now. I encourage people to take a look at the organizational charts of companies in the sector, we can see how women's names appear in those management positions.