The Value of Women in Manufacturing

The manufacturing sector is facing a tremendous shortage of skilled employees. As a result, it can no longer afford to ignore the desire, talent and energy of anyone, male or female, who is passionate about making a difference in this vital industry.

A diverse team collaborating on a project promotes creativity, turns talkers into listeners, and helps everyone look at things from different perspectives.

Wouldn’t more women in leadership roles be highly advantageous for our organizations and the economy? There is no question about it that women could significantly make this industry more appealing. Women think, behave and act differently and that’s what’s needed.

We have to spark this industry, create more civilized and cultivated work environments, and establish an atmosphere wherein all people are able to envision futures for themselves and their loved ones. Let’s stop for a moment, take a deep breath and consider what’s missing.

I would like to believe that women who choose manufacturing as a career will use their leadership qualities for purpose and passion rather than power and position. I am certain that openminded and forward-thinking men are ready to embrace more balanced meetings around the boardroom table because men of quality are not afraid of women of equality.

We have to actively search for different perspectives without becoming defensive.

Together we can create a better tomorrow. Times are different and different actions will bring us different results. I am not saying that female-dominated workplaces would change everything, but a good balance between men and women who respect each other’s input will. The language will change and they will help each other see things that they wouldn’t have been able to see on their own.

I have met many women who are passionate about this industry and driven to succeed in their careers even though challenges such as managerial and industrial biases are certainly present. Even though women are faced with different obstacles and may have to work harder to get to where they want to be, with enough tenaciousness they will reach their goals.

I have noticed that women’s self image is often not as good as their male counterparts’. Women question themselves about their ability to lead and succeed while most men are convinced that they are great and that they deserve the role they are in.

To all the women: Self confidence and self-worth are key! Don’t get carried away by what people say you can or can’t do. Simply think about the value you can and will bring to this industry.

Determination, persistence and action will help women to continue their journey so they can really go places and make a positive difference in the manufacturing world. I believe the time for women in manufacturing has come.

Can you hear us roar?

 

This article was published in the Impact Women in Manufacturing Fall 2012 newsletter

 

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