This month’s Aspire features two inspiring women leaders of MCC. The first of which is Wendy Weehuizen, the Head of Human Resources of MCC, who is at the forefront of the Diversity and Inclusion in the organization.
On International Women’s Day, people across the globe come together to recognize women’s achievements and invaluable contributions to our society.With this year’s campaign #PressforProgress, all are encouraged to take steps towards gender parity. This may take time to fully achieve, but through our united efforts this creates an enormous impact for women.
MCC Transport supports the global movement of #PressforProgress, and in celebration of women’s day, this month’s Aspire features two inspiring women leaders of MCC. The first of which is Wendy Weehuizen, the Head of Human Resources of MCC, who is at the forefront of Diversity and Inclusion in the organization.
Let’s get to know Wendy
Wendy has more than 17 years of experience across both business and HR portfolios prior joining MCC Transport in 2017.
She has held local, regional and global roles in Singapore. Most recently, she was with a global financial services company where she spent 5 years in Corporate Functions HR. Wendy’s approach to HR business partnering is grounded on the belief that HR strategy is the most effective when it is linked closely to business delivery which allows each to complement and benefit from the other.
Call to Action Towards Gender Parity
In this interview, let’s know more of Wendy’s plans and actions to further promote gender parity within the organization, as well as to celebrate the achievements of women in the in the industry.
1. What has been your biggest learning as you progressed in your career to become the Head of HR of MCC Transport?
In my almost 2-decade career journey, I have learnt that I can’t do it all… on my own! Being able to create followship as one’s career progresses is crucial in today’s matrix workplace. We can all benefit from receiving help to drive our agendas forward - this enables our personal sustainability and can enhance our impact and influence on a global stage
2. What is your top-of-mind goal as part of that and, as you see more women enter the workforce?
In the current war for talent, diversity & inclusion, it is not just a lofty corporate ideal - it is increasingly becoming a strategic imperative. I relish this seat in management team, to bring a different perspective to how we shape an inclusive culture in MCC and unlock the potential of our diverse team.
3. As Head of HR for MCC and as a HR professional, what are the biggest shifts in challenges for women?
The aggregate female participation in the global workforce has improved vividly with deliberate and courageous options for agile working environments to support families. That said, we need to boost our efforts in advancing women over the long term. Today, there is no difference between women and men as far as qualification and skills are concerned. Women are as ambitious as men, yet gender inequality remain in many cultures. Millennial women continue to face disappointingly similar challenges as senior women who joined the workforce 30 years ago!
In Maersk, we have taken a global position on our maternity and paternity policies which I am very proud of. Shipping is a competitive industry and Maersk has high standards - it is not easy to outperform these expectations.
4. This year’s International Women’s Day celebration focuses on “gender parity,” what’s your take on that? What steps are we taking as an organization to address gender parity in the industry?
Let us start by understanding what parity means in the workplace as gender parity cuts across multiple dimensions. A common reference is ‘pay parity’ which means same pay for the same value that a role creates.
We are making progress on this front, but it is much harder to resolve the second level parity problem of how do we get women into these jobs or ensure women that have a fair chance and advance to positions of leadership and influence, or how do we change mindsets that have been culturally institutionalized for centuries.
True gender parity will not happen overnight in Maersk or within MCC, but the direction we are headed to shift attitudes and build momentum for change aims to support this. We all play a crucial part in building a culture that leverages diversity and values inclusion.
The ultimate hope is that the change we affect in Maersk will ripple out to the rest of the shipping industry and beyond. Perhaps over time, Maersk alumni who go on to work in other organizations, take this DNA with them and further seed this change elsewhere.
5. What’s your message to women who aspire to be leaders someday or those who just want to be the best version of themselves?
I believe excellence starts with us and the efforts that we make. Choose a path that is in line with your professional and personal goals. Be confident and celebrate that you are doing your best because resilient leadership starts from within. There are no guarantees that you will have an amazing career, but it will increase your chances and can enrich your journey. In addition, be bold and try different things to challenge your comfort zone, or just to gain a new perspective.
Lastly, networking is important, but harder for women who have a strong tendency towards execution. Networking is what gets you the opportunities and enables you to succeed, so make time to connect, to enhance your visibility, impact and influence!