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International Women

International Women's Day 2021

In recognition of International Women’s Day 2021, we asked some of our colleagues about what the day means to them and how this year's theme of ‘Choose to Challenge’ relates to the manufacturing and engineering industries.

Chloe Smith -  International Womens Day

Chloe Smith – Installations Manager


What do you love most about your job?

I manage the software deliveries for MSP. This involves communicating with our engineers, suppliers and customers to facilitate an effective completion to each project. The thing I enjoy most is building good working relationships with our customers and revisiting these during subsequent deliveries for new machines or applications.


Which woman inspires you the most in terms of your career?

My mother. She is a self-employed knitwear designer who has built a successful business through hard work, tenacity and skill.


The theme for International Women's Day this year is ‘Choose to Challenge’ surrounding inequality. The gender inequality within manufacturing is well known, how do you think the industry could improve this?

I think the greatest inequality is in numbers. The industry needs to continue supporting career programmes that aim to help women get involved in manufacturing. Over time, this will break down stereotypes about the acceptable positions and roles of women in society.


What does International Women's Day mean to you?

It is a day for celebrating the achievements of women, against a backdrop of gender inequality. For me, the key theme is hope for the future.

Esther Saunders - International Womens Day

Esther Saunders – Accounts Assistant


What do you love most about your job?

The variety. I get involved in various aspects of Accounts and the company in general. I also love being able to see the accounts through right from purchase/sales ledger to month end reporting.


Which women inspire you the most in terms of your career?

Amelia Earhart – she taught us hard work gets results!

Eleanor Roosevelt – she taught us to fight for what we believe regardless of what other people think of you.


What advice would you give to women entering roles in the manufacturing / engineering industry?

Go for it! It is an ever evolving sector and women are becoming more and more prominent within it.


What does International Women's Day mean to you?

It is central to celebrating the improvements we have made to gender equality over the years. I know there is still further to go but if we look at how the attitudes towards women have changed in the last 100 years, we have made huge developments!

Marianne Whitfield -  International Womens Day

Marianne Whitfield – Director of Development


What do you love most about your job?


As MSP’s Director of Development, I have responsibility for our product development strategies, and managing our various teams of software engineers who work on our products. I love the day-to-day variety of what I do, and the fact that I’m working on some really innovative products based on emerging technologies that will have a massive impact on the automation of manufacturing processes across the world.


Which woman/women inspire you the most in terms of your career?


I’m inspired by anyone who demonstrates a real passion for what they do, and works tirelessly to achieve their goals. My mum’s dedication to her work as a GP inspired me from an early age and I have four sisters who are all leaders in their own fields. I’ve also met a lot of really strong women throughout my career who I now call friends and who inspire and motivate me everyday.


What advice would you give to women entering roles in the manufacturing / engineering industry?


Be yourself, know your worth, and don’t ever let ‘imposter syndrome’ win. Women bring a different mindset to technical problem solving that is often based on intuition rather than logic. You don’t have to have a PHD level engineering to be able to solve real-world problems.


The theme for International Women's Day this year is ‘Choose to Challenge’ surrounding inequality. The gender inequality within manufacturing is well known, how do you think the industry could improve this?


I’ve lived with gender inequality throughout my career in tech, business and now manufacturing. ‘Choose to Challenge’ is a great theme because I’ve always had to challenge people’s perceptions of me and my abilities – often because they see a woman in front of them rather than a man.

For a start, I’d ban the phrase ‘She’ll never get her pretty head around that’!

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