MAPEI celebrates all women in South Africa and acknowledges the important role they have not only within our company, but within our traditionally male orientated construction market and within the greater community. We are proud to see these ladies actively contributing and positively impacting the industry. We believe this is reflected in the fact that within MAPEI, 53% of the senior management positions in our company are currently held by women. ”Women are an essential part of any business and bring with them a sense of strength, trust and confidence that anyone- male or female - can look to as an example of leadership”, states Kyle Hoedemaker – MAPEI HR Manager.
“Construction remains, for the most part, a male dominated industry but there are definite signs that women are progressing and changing this status quo. Adding value especially in roles like leadership, administration and managerial positions” says Tracy Harris, MAPEI Commercial Manager. “It takes a lot of confidence, courage and hard work to earn stripes in this “masculine terrain”. Women need to stop thinking that they need to act like men to play a part in this tough industry and realize that they have an abundance to offer in their own capacity.
Women are by nature hard working, loyal and always willing to learn. We have a natural ability to form strong relationships whether it be in our homes or at work. What does work against us sometimes is that women are fiercely competitive, sometimes towards each other which we need to overcome in order to learn how to create step ladders helping other women achieve success” Tracy concludes.
It would be remis at this time, tragically, not to acknowledge the horrific gender-based violence that is once again in the spotlight in South Africa. It’s important to remember the statement made by President Cyril Ramaphosa in his address to the nation on the 5th of September 2019 “Violence against women has become more than a national crisis. It is a crime against our common humanity.” It is an absolute travesty that statements like these need to be made but they are vital to highlight this unfortunate and horrible reality into the public domain and thoughts.
Change comes from a concerted effort combined with commitment and we as MAPEI are fully committed to creating an empowering environment for women within our company through training and investment in our women to build our future leaders. We are blessed to have many women in our company who are leading the way and contributing to our success and efforts across all levels within operations – from senior management to production, our ladies are showing the way.
“Despite the obvious challenges that exist for women in the workplace, especially in our sector of the market – it is important for each and every women to know that they are no less able or equipped to achieve their goals than any other person” states Wilma Baaitjies - Financial Director for MAPEI. “If any woman sets her mind to it, and believes she can, she will – only she can allow external factors to stop her, it is absolutely her choice! She adds that she is reminded of Michelle Obama’s quote of "There is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish.” Whenever you feel crushed, under pressure, pressed or in darkness, you’re in a powerful place of transformation and transmutation. Trust the process. Trust God.
Women of MAPEI, be proud of what you have achieved. Let the achievements of those who went before you inspire you to unlock your own strength and motivate you to make a difference in the workplace, your family, your community and your country. Go out and celebrate the women that you are. Go out and make a difference this Women's Month!