Maersk South Africa marks Women’s Month with a series of interviews with our female employees, who share how they have witnessed and contributed to the empowerment of women and to becoming a certified Top Gender Empowered Company in the Transport & Logistics industry.
- Please describe how Maersk has helped you advance in your professional career.
- What are some initiatives and programmes Maersk has implemented to support women's empowerment?
- How is Maersk providing a safe and inclusive work environment for women?
Following graduation, I was introduced to Maersk, beginning a long and fruitful partnership. Since joining the company, I've seen it develop from an inflexible organisation to one that is decisive, compassionate, people-driven, and customer-led.
I've been fortunate to match my career aspirations with the opportunities that the company’s growth has presented.
Working at Maersk has given me the opportunity to travel, network, and study with people from all around the world. Ongoing development in our tech-enabled pathway acts as a reminder that I must be an agile and life-long learner, as well as demonstrate the value I provide to the businesses.
Whenever my schedule allows, I stay informed through our skill development platforms, communication channels, and leveraging Maersk's excellent network of mentors. I am currently in one of my most gratifying roles in my career, which allows me to bring my best self to work every day!
Maersk is actively working to tackle gender disparity and the underrepresentation of women in leadership by providing female-focused skill development courses such as "Strategies for Success," which aim to equip women with the hard and soft skills necessary to realise their full potential. It was launched in 2012 and has already attracted over 2200 participants. I am thrilled to be a member of the Employment Equity Committee, which focuses on attracting and retaining female talent.
The company has taken proactive steps to create a psychologically safe environment where we feel confident to openly address our concerns without fearing any repercussions. We also count on several tools to voice our concerns or experiences in the event of harassment, discrimination, conflict of interest, or personal problems:
- Maersk's Whistleblower, a mechanism that allows employees to anonymously report incidents that do not correspond with our values or policies.
- The Maersk Ombuds Function is an independent, neutral, confidential, and informal service to all employees offering a voluntary safe place for employees to seek guidance, voice concerns or discuss options for any work-related matter. The ombuds function is initially staffed by two experienced and senior Maersk employees located in Cape Town and Copenhagen.
- The Employee Assistance Program which provides us with an amplified network of professional specialists (psychologists, medical doctors, financial advisors, and many more). This service is free, anonymous, and can be extended to our family members.
- Our leaders and HR teams are also open to listen to us and support us through any professional matters where we flag concerns.
I am grateful for Maersk's supportive parenting policies and benefits, such as the flexible Return to Office policy, which has enabled me and other co-workers who are parents to effectively balance our responsibilities at home and at work while also ensuring we fully enjoy the time we spend with our children and performing our jobs. Policies are clear and easily accessible, and the team is always available to answer our queries and walk us through the processes.
- Maersk’s unwavering commitment to promoting diversity, inclusivity, equal opportunities, and eliminating gender bias in the workplace.
- The organisation’s strong support system and mentorship culture where we can learn from our exceptional talent and top industry experts.
- The extensive learning platforms, which offer a vast number of topics and uniquely tailored programmes.
Maersk's provision of a strong support system, including a network of influential mentors, comprehensive skill-building programmes, and family-friendly policies, has been critical to my professional success. This caring environment has enabled me to flourish in my job while still managing my personal duties efficiently. There is still more work to be done, but I am encouraged that we are on the right course towards attaining gender equality and empowering women in the organisation.
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