Women in the IndustrySara Meade
In the United States, only 6.3% of women worked in male-dominated occupations in 2016, according to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. Executive leadership teams led by men establish the tone for talent acquisition standards, often allowing masculine stereotypes to drive opportunities for advancement. Women in the workforce are currently working to attract more women to these jobs, in an effort to help them thrive in industries such as manufacturing, construction, supply chain, and procurement. In order to attract women to these male-dominated spaces, the jobs need to be presented as more accessible to women, as many of these opportunities are unfamiliar to most women. Since career choices are motivated by factors such as awareness, advocacy, and growth opportunities, women need to be made aware of the rewards of working in these fields. Once women have entered the industry, it is important for them to have a support system–including working with other women who truly enjoy what they do. For women to be able to advance, it is helpful to have confident leaders, both male and female, to mentor and champion their success. Management must also lead by example and work to dismantle workplace culture that is discouraging women to participate in male-dominated career fields.
The workforce clearly benefits from including more women. With more diverse perspectives comes new innovative approaches to solutions, a more profitable and growing industry, and improved business performance. At Industrial Supply, we promote diversity in all levels of our organization and seek out talented individuals of every race, ethnicity, gender, age, and orientation. Our team understands that success is achieved with a wide variety of viewpoints.
One of our team members in particular is a recognized expert on providing Industrial Supply’s clients with the personalized solutions they need to get the job done. As a qualified, supplier-trained Cutting Tools Specialist, Kerry Deppe began her journey at Industrial Supply in 2017, with 10 years previous experience in distribution and cutting tools. As a key contributor to the company, Kerry helps her clients stay on the cutting edge. Her personal mantra is “With focus, nothing is impossible.” Her hopes for women in the industry align with her own professional goals for the future. She acknowledges the changes that have happened in the industry thus far with optimism, and remains hopeful for even more opportunities for women in the future. For women who are just entering the industry, Kerry offers some advice. She says, “Stay focused and don’t lose sight of your personal goals. With the right attitude and determination, no one can stop you from being the best.”
Despite the underrepresentation of women in male-majority organizations, progress is slowly being made as attitudes and norms are shifting. As is evident from Kerry’s success at Industrial Supply, women in the industries mentioned above are being taken more seriously by their male counterparts. However, as Kerry notes, there is still much work to be done in recruiting and supporting women. Industrial Supply is proud of its leadership role in this issue, and will continue to help transform the workplace and create an inclusive culture for women in the industry.