Foreword by Michaela Bakala at “Top Czech Women 2016”

January 23, 2017
Ladies and Gentlemen, For the twelfth time already, publishing house Economia has prepared, umpired and presented an overview of the most prominent and successful women in both the private and public spheres of the Czech Republic, this time reflecting achievements in 2016. The year of 2016 was certainly packed with significant events both at home and abroad, but it was also a year of change where our poll is concerned. We were delighted to add a new category that recognises leading women in the start-up business sector. Every year we try to make our poll better than what preceded it the year before, by, among other things, improving the individual categories, providing more apposite evaluations and taking on board new media and commercial partners. We are truly pleased that our poll attracted the attention of Czech Television, Czech Radio – Radiožurnál, Burda Praha and BigMedia. The resulting coverage was of importance not just for us but for the organisers, and even more importantly, for all the nominees and award winners. There is no doubt they deserve such recognition. This year’s magazine, Top ženy Česka [Top Women of the Czech Republic], has also moved on. It now places a greater emphasis on new faces and the career journeys of the freshly introduced women. The magazine also reserves prominent space for those women devoted to philanthropy and for those who are striving to make the world around us a better place. None of the new magazine developments have reduced our interest in business and public administration. They remain very much at the centre of our attention. We are living through a time marked by a plethora of attempts to redefine or question values that we have cherished and developed over many years. But they have not shaken our conviction that only a democratic government in a free country can truly create the conditions necessary for the dynamic development of its society. It is no secret that business can only thrive in a predictable environment. If there is to be new investment, development and added value, there must be a stable and secure business environment governed by the rule of law. We form a community of active women who have decided to take their opportunities and lives firmly in their own hands. The decision to do so in no way detracts from the female instinct or the sense for parenthood and partnership. On the contrary, thanks to open minds and understanding within our families and society, and where our partners are concerned, we are able to achieve incomparably more than was possible in the past. The Top ženy Česka poll is open to anyone who sees the success of an individual or a business entity as success for the whole of society. We recognise and award women in business for their achievements, career successes and business results, in politics for their contribution to reinforcing democracy, appreciation of context and courage, and in public administration for leading the way and setting professional examples. We must not shrink from accepting success and exceptional achievements, or from being positively different, hardworking and responsible. We should be proud of our results and achievements as well as our potential to achieve more and bring about positive change. False modesty is no match for healthy confidence and wisdom. I wish to thank the entire Economia team for their hard work in delivering the poll. I also wish to thank all those who supported it, while my congratulations go to all the nominees and laureates. I am already looking forward to our magazine reporting on the successful women of the future. With my wishes for a great and successful 2017! Michaela Bakala

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