Whilst at school, where did you think you would take your career? I really wanted to study medicine but my lack of confidence and belief that I could do it meant it wasn’t something I pursued.
Was a career in engineering ever discussed with you at school? No, never mentioned in any career days.
What was your first job? Pot washing in a hotel in the village where I grew up, I was 13.
What is your current role and what does it involve? My current role is commercial director of the JD Cooling Group. It involves liaising with all departments of the business to review efficiencies and processes, to assess how we can maintain and improve our position within the market
What job satisfaction do you have? I love my job; I am passionate about making JD Group the number one choice for clients and employees. I get to work with a great team to deliver this.
What excites/interests you about the Air Conditioning & Refrigeration (ACR) industry? My background is as a chartered accountant so when I moved to work for the JD Cooling Group it was a move to a totally different industry. It’s fast paced and the projects we get involved in are highly interesting. I’m slowly getting to grips with the terminology used!
Is it usually male orientated? Does this have any bearing on your attitude to your job? As this is about promoting International Women’s Day, you may like to expand a bit on your views of working in an industry more often filled by men. The engineering industry is usually male dominated. At JD Group we have a good mix of males and females and seek out the best individuals in their profession, regardless of their gender. Being the only female in the boardroom often means that at times I bring ideas to the table that my colleagues haven’t always considered. I think most of the time they see this as a positive!
Do you have a preference to working with men, women or a mix? No, I am used to working with both and think the best outcomes usually come from having a mix of us in the room.
Which woman in history (past and present) inspires you the most? Past: Emmeline Pankhurst, after all if it wasn’t for her efforts all those years ago, we may have a different world today.
Present: Sara Blakely, business woman. Her drive, determination and strong business acumen has placed her well in the world of business along with her down to earth nature and ability to talk openly about work life balance, making her both inspiring and relatable.
What is one thing you think that you can do to help create a gender equal world (#EachforEqual) between men and women? Keep paving the way for equality, keep encouraging our female team to believe in what they do and what they offer and encourage them to be bold enough to share that. I also strongly believe in raising our children to understand the importance of equality, to respect what both men and women can bring and to encourage them to work together. After all, this is when the best outcomes are often achieved.
What is the best piece of advice you were ever given? A wise lady once told me to “always put my business head on” when dealing with issues both inside and outside the workplace. It hasn’t failed me yet; I just have to remember to always put it on!
Is there a little-known fact about yourself that would surprise other people (secret skill, unusual hobby etc)? Not a surprise but a lover of lists and all things organised!