convERSATIonS WITH sara JoNEs by KElly HEitz iN ordEr to dEvEloP a divErsE aNd crEativE WorKforcE, our leaders must also come from diﬀerent backgrounds, races, genders and ideologies. With such a large population of women working in the spas around the world, this industry is uniquely positioned to empower and advance women leaders. sara Jones, managing director and editor of Spa & Wellness MexiCaribe magazine, has recently launched the Global Wellness Institute’s Initiative for Women in Leadership. The organization strives to help women in the spa and wellness industries further their careers and encourage organizations to achieve equality and diversity. The group has promoted female leadership throughout the industry by partnering with the Lean In organization, brainchild of Facebook coo Sheryl Sandberg. For this month’s Conversations, we sat down with Jones, the writer, traveler, entrepreneur, eternal optimist and wellness enthu- siast who hopes to spread the message of inclusion and excitement through this new initiative. Pulse: Tell us about the Women in leadership Initiative. Jones: The Global Wellness Institute Women in Leadership Initiative was created to encourage women to form circles of support and encouragement using the Lean In framework, and for companies to empower and support women in their workplace and ensure they provide equal rights and opportunities. However, the industry is still disproportionately represented by men at the top. We have so many amazing female leaders in the spa and wellness sector, I feel that this is the ideal place to encourage more female leadership and equal opportunities. P: How did you get involved with the Women in leadership initiative? J: Having started my own Lean In Circle where I live in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, I had the idea to take it further within the wellness industry. So, I approached Susie Ellis, chairman and CEO of the Global Wellness Institute. My vision was to have Lean In Circles throughout the spa and wellness industry so women at all stages of their career had guidance and support— something I didn’t always have during challenging times as a young female entrepreneur. P: Why is it important for women in the spa industry to support each other with groups like lean In Circles? J: The workforce of our industry in many areas is largely female. 34 PULSE ■ March/April 2018 global Wellness institute Women in leadership initiative committee members Joanne berry, Jones and darlene fiske wore red hair streaks at the global Wellness summit for the Women in leadership initiative.