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DHLs Nazzerena Franco challenges gender stereotypes

DHL's Nazzerena Franco challenges gender stereotypes

 January 25, 2023

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Interested in a career in logistics?

Meet Nazzerena Franco, a Country Manager for DHL Express Italy, who shares what life is like for a woman in this industry.

Breaking down industry stereotypes

Nazzerena shares an anecdote. Over her career, people have assumed she is a man because in Italian, her surname is a male name. 

"I used to be a little bit upset, but then it became a joke," explains Nazzerena.

As the only woman in the room, her team thought Nazzerena wouldn't be able to do her job at the same level as the men. "As you may imagine, starting a meeting in this context was not easy," adds Nazzerena.

However, as Nazzerena's colleagues started to work with her, this initial assumption soon changed. Nazzerena demonstrated her knowledge of her field, how she nurtured relationships, and the effort she put into her work, as well as her reliability and passion.

Being a successful leader in logistics 

Nazzerena sees herself as a good manager, a good person, and a good leader

"Being a manager or leader is a pattern that is more related to the male world, because of the history of many men in key positions," explains Nazzerena.

"Especially at the beginning of my career, I have put in place behaviors as well as qualities that are more related to let's say the 'male world'. More directive, and focused on results," adds Nazzerena.

Taking a different approach to work

Nazzerena is still results-focused in her career, but in a different way. Now, Nazzerena values expressing emotions, and finding different solutions to problems. 

"This kind of experience is not just for women, it's very valuable for men," says Nazzerena. "I needed external reflection, I needed to discuss to my thoughts and my feelings with other women."

Discovering moments of growth

Nazzerena shares another learning curve in her career at DHL. For Nazzerena, the greatest growth isn't rooted in a new job position or major responsibilities, but in the small, day-to-day things. "For instance, I enjoy the capability to have a good one-to-one with my team, or the right advice, or the right call I gave to encourage a colleague," adds Nazzerena.

Staying true to yourself 

Nazzerena concludes with some valuable words of wisdom: "Each of us has a different story and maybe the recipe is in accepting our own story."

And, her advice to further women: "Be good at your job, be passionate, and keep on dreaming big, but at the same time be true to yourself."

Inspired by Nazzerena's career story?

In a global business like DHL, the opportunities are endless. DHL is looking for people to join them, work with them, grow with them, and stay with them.

Make a positive impact and build an amazing DHL career.


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