Women in maritime
Group Management team: Marica’s story
I studied economics, and one of my teachers suggested auditing as a good grounding for a career in finance. I liked the clear career pathway, and consulting gave me an insight into lots of different companies and sectors. Although the firm I worked for hired the same number of men and women each year as part of their auditor recruitment, it was clear that as you moved up, it was mainly the men who became partners. That’s better now, but at the time, it made me want to look for a new challenge.
Believe in caring
Because I was used to the male-dominated financial industry, I didn’t think about it too much when I moved into shipping. Stena AB is committed to gender equality and that feeds into our own company targets. I’ve also found that we really live up to our values at Stena Line. Everyone is warm and welcoming, and I believe that helps us attract the right people.
For a long time, I was the only woman in the Group Management team. Since we’ve become three women and three men, I’ve noticed that we’re more open to asking questions of each other. There’s more conversation and questioning, so we’re all getting more information and ideas from other areas of the business. That can only be a good thing for the company and our future.
I believe women in the maritime industry need to be frank and straightforward. I’d advise anyone wanting to progress their career to have the confidence to say what you think.
We know that there is more work to be done on gender equality. The balance in Group Management is a start but we have a target for 30% women managers across the business, and in some areas, we’re a long way from achieving that. I’d like to see us speaking to girls and young women before they start making decisions about their careers, maybe going into schools to show them what our industry has to offer.
I also think networks are really important. I am a member of Ruter Dam, an executive development programme for female leaders here in Sweden, and it’s been a great help to have other women in the network to discuss with. We have open communities within Stena Line too – such as Stena Female Network, and our mentor programme – and I’d recommend joining those to get advice, share ideas, and find mentoring opportunities.