Since having my own business in Fenestration with my partner I have struggled to find many women in the industry! If I do find any, they have normally taken a firm back seat! I often wonder why! Maybe they are just doing some admin to help out their partner or are employed by someone else but have no real interest in the job, maybe they feel intimidated by the industry and worry they won’t fit in, maybe they are in higher positions of larger companies so I don’t see, or maybe they are just not interested in this kind of job!
I am the type of person that’s eager to learn, I love my business and want to learn everything about it, my partner and I do everything ourselves and work very hard, but I always want to catch up! Leigh ( my partner ) has years of experience on me, I will never know what he knows but it won’t stop me trying. I take great pride in what we do, so recently I started an apprenticeship to help me learn all the hands on stuff and get a better idea of the manual side of the industry and all of the health and safety, also some product knowledge so I will be able to talk about our business and the industry knowing what I am talking about is correct because I have put the time in and trained. Let’s face it, when I have finished I will know more than some cowboy fitters.
At no point during my decision to have a business in the industry, my decisions to blog about it or my decision to do an apprenticeship was I wondering what people would think!! Not for a second, I am doing what I am good at and that is business and the fact that it’s fenestration does actually interest me! I can’t drive anywhere without checking everyone’s conservatory roofs to see if the need replacing or admiring a house of windows (don’t make out you don’t do that) so why would I not want to do it!
Well there are some of you possibly reading this now wondering why I’m not braiding someone’s hair or doing the housework or looking after kids!! Well I do that too! There are guys cutting hair and working in clothes shops!! cause that’s what they like, I like being active and I like working, so what better job to have. I do find it a bit sad that some men in the industry are uncomfortable with this, I have heard that in my case some people are intimidated but that just makes me feel sorry for them. Why would I not be able to work in the industry along side men?
I think women doing what I’m doing is good for the industry, don’t get me wrong, I am not expecting the world to be full of women fitters in a few years time, just that they take more of an active role in their business, there are loads of great people who will help with training. I have to admit that there is only so far I can go, I can’t see that I will ever fit a house full of windows on my own! I’m physically not strong enough but some women might, just as some men can’t.
I had a bit of feedback from the Fit show and was surprised to hear that a lot more people know of me than I thought, and not only that but they like what I do and follow me regularly on Twitter and for my Blogging. This was a lovely thing to hear, I have been told before that more people than I think take notice of what I say ( probably best you don’t notice everything, sometimes I get weird) and fully support my active role in the industry. So although people may not show it, there is support out there! I think it will take a while for even the men who do think this is a great thing, to say it out loud in front of those who don’t.
So come on lads, we are not trying to take over the world (oh wait…)
and come on girls, if you are interested in training I can point you in the right direction and if you would like help with anything else then please ask!