Women in FM: A Day in the Life, Carla Gonzalez
When you meet her, there’s an evident strength and determination to Carla Gonzalez. An operations manager at an ESFM client site in South San Francisco, she leads an ambitious sustainability program that maintains Platinum TRUE certification for zero waste year after year. In Carla’s mind, there’s no question as to the inspiration for her success: her mom, Nelly Castañeda Neumeyer.
“My mom is a trailblazer in many senses, but especially in her career path within the aviation industry,” Carla said. Carla’s mother, Nelly, came to the United States from Honduras when she was young and built a successful life for herself and her family, starting as an account executive and eventually growing into a Deputy Area Manager role with a major airline, overseeing customer service for all of the United States, Canada and the Caribbean.
“Watching her poise and professionalism managing critical operations in such a male-dominated industry was the basis for my confidence in spaces where women are not the majority. Not only did she work hard and win many accolades in her career, but she did it all while being a present and loving single mother to my sister and me.”
Carla brings a hospitality background to her role, having managed a private club before growing her ESFM career from an AV technician to her current site management role, where she helps lead a team of 23 in a 100,000-square-foot research facility. She directly oversees sustainability, safety and janitorial programs, as well as vendor relationships.
As a leader, Carla is passionate about developing teams that work cohesively and perform at the highest standard. She encourages the associates individually and emphasizes the importance of health and well-being in and out of the workplace. Carla is also a strong supporter of diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives.
For Women’s History Month, Carla shared a peek into her daily routine with a Day in the Life video, part of a series ESFM is sharing to highlight the Women in FM who make unique impacts every day.
To rising female leaders, Carla offers this advice, “Stay true to your values and help other women rise along with you. It has been proven time and time again that having women’s insight and unique perspectives is valuable to businesses and employees. Don’t settle for less than you are worth and always set a good example for other women.”