Cummins employees come from diverse backgrounds and experiences and aspire to a workforce representative at every level of the communities in which it operates globally. In celebration of International Women’s Day (IWD) on 8 March, three female employees from South Africa, Morocco and Nigeria reflect on how having diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplaces allows Cummins to attract and retain a truly global workforce. The IWD 2022 campaign theme is #BreakTheBias: Imagine a gender equal world.
Cummins has made great strides in the career advancement of females within the company both globally and locally, according to Avonisha Parsotham from South Africa. She is Business Transformation Director – Africa Middle East (AME), responsible for business strategy, quality, and sales functional excellence in the AME region.
“Seeing talented and admirable female employees recognised for their efforts and elevated to roles of senior responsibility makes me feel proudly Cummins. The various initiatives and affinity groups within Cummins are a demonstration of the support and dedication the company has to enable our female talent to achieve more,” says Avonisha.
Cummins is at the forefront of efforts to uplift and develop female talent both within and outside the company through its corporate responsibility initiatives. “I feel in general that across all organisations there is always a need to provide coaching and mentorship to females at various levels, focusing on career development planning, skills development, and preparation for the next career step. This is how we can build confidence and readiness for talented women to successfully grow their careers,” says Avonisha.
Israre Marjan from Morocco joined Cummins as Area Sales Manager within the Filtration Business Unit, and then transitioned to Territory Manager within the New and ReCon Parts Business, responsible for North, West, and Central African customers. “Cummins is a great place to work at because of its values that resonate with me, one of them being diversity and inclusion,” says Israre. Company initiatives in place include a Women’s Employee Resource Group and women’s development programmes to build business acumen.
Israre leads by example, especially to demonstrate to female technicians that nothing is impossible at Cummins. “I started off my career as a technician in Morocco, where I was the only female in my class at college. I have often heard that ‘There is no job at Cummins that a woman cannot do.’ I try to show females starting off in traditionally male-dominated roles that this is indeed true.”
Key to this approach is assessing competencies and skills on their own merit and not based on gender. “We need to let women know they can work across various roles and industries, thereby reinforcing their self-confidence and increasing their visibility. Cummins is one of the rare places in Morocco that encourages and supports women in all roles,” says Israre.
Doris Okeyide is a Regional Manager (Sales and Services) in Cummins West Africa Ltd. in Nigeria. Her role entails the sale of Cummins products and services, while maintaining a high level of customer service. Prior to her current role, she was the Workshop Manger in the Rebuild Centre for two years. “I started my career in a male-dominated engineering company. I remained focused and did not allow anyone to look down on me. My advice to women is to be confident in their skills and abilities and not to let others make them doubt themselves. Be diligent in all you do and look out for mentors.
“I believe that Cummins has done amazingly well towards the goal of achieving gender equality in all regions. Deliberate efforts are in place to bring in more women without compromising on qualifications while giving everyone equal opportunities. In terms of female empowerment, I am glad to see women moving into higher roles, which instils confidence in others.” She adds that she has had the privilege of being mentored by female leaders in Cummins, which has broadened her on-the-job knowledge and built her career path. “On a personal level, it has helped me become better in parenting and being stronger both at work and in my personal life.”
Learn more at cummins.com.