Women in the Pump Industry (and all other related industrial fields) is important to me for many reasons. The most important one being to create change.
When I learned about the 'industrial industry', I was a college graduate. It wasn’t until I stumbled into it because I couldn’t find a job as an adult that I knew anything about this industry or the opportunities within it. My first little taste was working at a hardware store, but even then, it wasn’t until I went to work an inside sales position for an industrial distributor selling pumps, compressors, and pneumatic tools that I really saw this industry.
At first it was scary because there was so much to learn, but once I was able to start figuring it out and do my job well, I realized I really liked being in this industry. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any room to grow where I was at. Luckily, I had been given an amazing opportunity to stay in the industry and grow to my heart's content. *Que Empowering Pumps* When I first emailed Charli, I told her the struggle on being a female in this industry. Even at a three-person company in a very small/rural town in PA, I felt that struggle. I had many customers that didn’t want to work with me because they just assumed that I didn’t know what I was doing because of my gender. As I learned more, I was able to gain the trust and respect of most of them, but it wasn’t given freely nor was it easily done. However, I preferred that much better than my time at the hardware store where I would have to put up with customers requesting me to deliver their parts so that they could sexually harass me.
As I continue to grow in the industry and talk with other females, they all seem to have a similar story. This needs to change. We need to change. That is what Women in Industry is about…change. We need to work together to not only show women that they can have a successful and satisfying career in this industry but to create our own community and growth opportunities. To have the support to continue to learn and get better in our field. To show our equal value in this industry. We’ve come a long way, but we still have a lot of work to do. Let’s do this!