In San Pedro City, located in the extreme south-west of Ivory Coast in Central Western Africa area (CWA), several female warehouse and depot supervisors are inspiring others as great examples of women that have successfully navigated the warehouse field.
Certain qualities are needed to succeed within the warehousing field such as problem-solving, good communication and interpersonal skills to collaborate within teams and being able to manage conflict and uncertainty. Still today women face challenges within warehousing such as gender bias, difficulty in finding mentors and juggling the demands of the job within a male dominated field, whilst these challenges can be difficult, it can also lead to an incredibly rewarding career.
The passion for the work is often the driving force behind success and this is no exception for our four female Site reporting & warehouse supervisors in San Pedro: Ema Blanche, Ahou Jocelyne, Anne Marie, and Ericka. They share how their passion for logistics and the need to challenge the status quo inspired them to enter this field and succeed.
Anne Marie Boitrin, Warehouse Supervisor, has 2 years of experience in San Pedro and shares that when she first joined Maersk, she was determined to prove the unfounded prejudices about women and this challenge motivated her to give of her best and succeed in breaking these.
A critical part of thriving within logistics is to have confidence, self-discipline, and the tenacity to keep going as the demands of the industry are great which require a passionate, proactive approach.
When I first started working in the warehouse, I was not taken seriously and the men did not respect my instructions, this was disheartening and discouraging. By focusing on my goals and never giving up, I've been able to thrive in the industry becoming a leader in this field and a successful career.
Erika Gahuidi, Warehouse Assistant, has been with Maersk for a year and has always been passionate about logistics and warehousing as it is always changing, and this evolution allows her to learn new things.
When asked on the qualities needed to thrive in the logistics field Erika shares that these are varied "With a job that relies on accuracy and efficiency, I need to be able to pay attention to the finer details. Having the spirit of teamwork is essential to success. Finally, having balance between work and personal commitments is a must. This ensures that I can manage my time effectively and make sure I am achieving my personal and professional goals".
Ema Blanche N’doumba, Warehouse Supervisor, joined Maersk 3 years ago after being inspired by a documentary that showcased a woman working as warehouse supervisor. "This woman's strength and resilience in the face of adversity showed me that no matter what our circumstances may be, we can always find the courage to strive for a better future."
Ema believes that strong communication skills are imperative to collaborate with customers, vendors, and other stakeholders. Despite facing obstacles through her career Ema believes that drive and determination can overcome this to ensure success.
"I love working in the logistics and warehouse field because it’s challenging and exciting, and I get to work with a great team of people and prove that females can excel in that field," shares Oka Ahou Jocelyne, Cocoa Warehouse Supervisor, who has been at Maersk for 2 years.
Ahou Jocelyne explains that she originally had challenges with people unwilling to take directions from her because of her gender. It took effort, courage and focus to face these challenges so that her capabilities were recognised.
I have personally experienced the rewards in my approach of having the right mix of courage, ambition, and enthusiasm, and I believe that this is a worthwhile opportunity for other women to explore.
We are proud to have such talented women working in CWA, leading the way in the warehousing and Depot fields. It is essential that both men and women become more inclusive and empathetic so that we can ensure the future growth of all our colleagues by developing their skills to progress their careers.
This includes recognizing the unique challenges that women face when entering and succeeding in male-dominated industries so that we can all play a vital role to provide the necessary support for their success thereby accepting and valuing their contribution.
Maersk is dedicated to creating an inclusive and diverse workplace where everyone can succeed. Let’s work together to create an equal and inclusive society for all to break down the barriers to success and create an environment that is truly representative of our diverse world.
If you’re looking to get into the depot and warehouse fields, remember that with the right skills and passion, success is within reach.
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