Being a female in the tire industry, and even auto care industry, you can often feel alone in a sea of men. Not that working with men isn’t great, but sometimes it’s nice to interact with other females.
I’m here to reiterate to all the females in the industry that you’re not alone. There are other women working in the auto industry that understand what it’s like to be in your shoes. In fact, an estimated 17% of the tire industry is made up of females.
I recently had the chance to attend my first Car Care Council’s Women’s Board meeting in Orlando. For me, it was unlike any other industry event I’ve attended.
I’m used to being the only female at events, or one of few. Being in a large conference room full of women (there were roughly 80 females in attendance) for two days was amazing. The experience was educational, refreshing and fun. I went into the event knowing just two members, but left with a network of great women I hope to continue to learn from.
Attendees came from companies like Tenneco, Bosch, Standard Motor Products, Schrader International, Timken and more. Women represented manufacturers, distribution, and independent repair shops. And while tire dealers we’re under represented at the event, there were a few in attendance.
During the meeting we learned about e-tailing and heard from a motivational speaker that had us laughing and crying. A professional gave tips on how to be more confident when public speaking and the founders of Brakes for Breasts shared their story. We also learned about furthering our education in the aftermarket and more.
Women think and work differently than men and the event helped emphasis how we can use or strengths and differences in the workplace.
In addition to speakers, there were many opportunities for networking and sharing business experiences.
As a division of the Auto Care Association’s Car Care Council, the Women’s Board is involved in a number of things in the industry. The group raises funds for and grants scholarships to women in the auto care industry. It has group, peer-to-peer, and traditional mentorship programs. Additionally, the Women’s Board hosts leadership conferences twice a year.
The Women’s Board has been around for a number of years. The group is growing and gaining more momentum, and women in the tire industry should certainly consider getting involved.