What does female empowerment mean to you? It’s an important topic in our industry. Here’s why:
The automotive aftermarket industry in the U.S. has always been male dominant, with the automotive parts, accessories, and tire store category, for example, comprised of approximately 18% women and 82% men, according to Center for Automotive Diversity, Inclusion & Advancement.
So, how can you better empower women within your organization?
Start by fully engaging women within the organization by accepting their viewpoints, making an effort to seek them out, and elevating the status of women through education, awareness, training and growth opportunities.
Here are some best practices to employ within your organization, that will effectively, and efficiently empower your female team members:
- Respect and regard them as an integral part of the team, which includes being involved in important business-related strategic initiatives.
- Provide career opportunities and advancement, based on their performance, attitude, and for collaborating with a team spirit.
- Encourage their contributions and truly listen to and value their opinions, insights, and recommendations.
- Provide growth opportunities through training, education and mentoring to be well-rounded in many aspects of your business.
- Ensure that compensation is fair and competitive based on reputable salary benchmarks within your region, and also commensurate with their education, skills, abilities, and work experience.
- With many women being head of household, allow a flexible work schedule which could take several forms (for example: delayed start time, early work departure, and the ability to work from a home office).
- Invite them to participate in leadership development training initiatives at your company.
- Encourage participation in industry associations and networking venues.
- Trust them to take the lead on a business initiative, forming their own team to carry out the new initiative.
- Ensure they feel engaged and connected within your company, empowered in their roles and responsibilities, by meeting with them on a regular basis to get their input, but also to hear their concerns or recommendations.
It’s important to empower everyone in your company to work together to achieve goals and ensure success — so don’t overlook the female voice. Not only is this the right thing to do, but it will also make your business more competitive in the long run.
It takes hard work, dedication, and the will to succeed from every team member to drive a company to success.
Barbara Kimbrew is the Director of Human Resources
Barbara is responsible for developing, directing and administering all human resource function, including recruiting, benefits, compensation administration, performance management and training initiatives. Read the rest of her bio here.
Contact Barbara at [email protected]