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Women engineers at Diageo share their career advice

Women engineers at Diageo share their career advice

 June 24, 2023

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As a prime employer for women in STEM, Diageo celebrated International Women in Engineering Day (INWED), a dedicated day that acknowledges the work of women engineers across the globe.

"Women are significantly under-represented across the global STEM industry, with the latest figures showing that just 16.5% of global engineers are women. However, women play a critical role in STEM at Diageo, and we are committed to supporting our female engineers as part of our ambition to champion inclusion and diversity across everything we do," said Diageo. 

"Our Supply Chain & Procurement function has women working in engineering roles across 13 locations, and we are working hard to attract women into other STEM roles, with our annual global graduate intake and apprentice scheme setting an ambition to achieve 50% women. We’re incredibly proud of all women engineers at Diageo and will continue to celebrate your hard work, whilst encouraging more young women and girls to take up engineering careers," explained Diageo.

To celebrate INWED, Diageo spoke with several engineers from across our markets about who discuss why they were attracted to Diageo, their proudest achievements, and their advice for other women across the sector.

Diageo engineers

Jess Ossyra, Diageo Third Party Operations Manager, Illinois, US

“I am most proud of the engagement events I have led with our supply sites. Not only do they help employees bond, but they also have a positive impact on the communities we work with. By organizing activities such as area clean-ups, tree plantings, brand-passion sessions, and knowledge-sharing sessions, we create a sense of belonging and camaraderie. I see the impact of these events on the faces of my colleagues, which makes the hard work always worth it," saidJess.

Sarah McGeough, Diageo Project Management Office for Mexico Expansion, Glasgow, Scotland

“It would have to be my first year at Diageo, when I was part of the team that delivered L24 at our site in Leven. The project involved taking out two of our bottling lines and replacing them with a single larger one, all while the site was still running. It was my first ‘big’ engineering project that I saw from the design concept through to delivery and commissioning, and despite all the ups and downs it was a success! I returned to Leven the other week and saw how it was running – it still makes me chuffed to this day!” commented Sarah.

Emem Okore, Diageo Technical Innovation Manager, Lagos, Nigeria

“I love working for Diageo because we produce great brands. The company also truly champions Inclusion and Diversity, creating equal opportunities for people with different backgrounds, races, ethnicity, religion, sex, etc. to thrive. Being a female, Diageo provides me with an environment to be my authentic self while adding value to the business, which is undeniably a huge appeal," added Emem.

Jane Leahy, Diageo Performance Improvement Lead, Leven, Scotland

Working at Diageo was (and still is) an exciting opportunity for me straight after leaving University. I grew up in Ireland and have always been familiar with the story of Arthur Guinness and the community he built. I read about Diageo’s Society 2030 goals and the work they were doing to make a positive impact on the world, and was instantly attracted. And how can you forget the portfolio of products Diageo has and the opportunities we have to work in a variety of functions and locations!” explainedJane.

Julie Murphy, Diageo Operational Technology Cybersecurity Manager, Dublin, Ireland

“For me it was Diageo's positive philosophy of Celebrating life, every day, everywhere. Life (and cybersecurity) is full of challenges, yet a positive perspective is a foundation for growth and opportunity. Diageo's positive philosophy truly resonates across our business, and I am proud to celebrate life in Diageo by taking the opportunity from the challenge," said Julie.

Sharing advice for current and future women engineers

Diageo engineers shared their advice for furthr women in engineering roles and those who want to start a career in the sector.

“Be yourself! Everyone brings a unique perspective and way of doing things, and this all adds to the melting pot! Don’t let being a minority stop you, let it build you up and help you break down barriers. Engineering carries a lot of stigma of being a traditionally ‘male’ based sector, but there are plenty of people out there who want to see women succeed and thrive in the sector, so support/advice is never too far away if you need it," advised Sarah.

“Avoid being a gatekeeper, be a gate opener. Have transparent and candid conversations with other women seeking guidance, seek opportunities to be a mentor, advocate for I&D initiatives, and connect people within your network that can help one another achieve their goals. Whatever gates you've opened, keep them open so that those coming next can open new doors," explained Jess.

“Make your voice heard, do not accept mediocrity, be resilient, and be the best you can be. It can be challenging playing in a male dominated space, but you should not relent," said Emem.

“Believe in yourself, work towards your goals, and allow your work to speak for itself. I also think it is important that engineering is encouraged in schools, and that girls are inspired to take part from a young age," commented Jane.

“Everyone brings a different background and opinion to their role, and this collective view helps us address risk where it may not have been considered. Every voice matters, our strength comes from the diversity we all bring. Speak up!” encouraged Julie.

Diageo engineers INWED

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