What’s it like to be a woman in logistics?

In celebration of International Women’s Day, we’ve asked three women across IAG Cargo’s operations what brought them to the air cargo sector, what they’ve learned while being here, and what makes IAG Cargo a great place to work.

IAG Cargo is no stranger to successful women, from our CFO Emma Adam to Gabriella Tamasi, our Technical Standards Executive becoming the first woman to Chair IATA’s Live Animals and Perishables Board. To honour International Women’s Day on 8 March 2022, we spoke with three inspirational women at IAG Cargo. Read on for their experiences, and insights into a sector that’s closing the gender gap and opening more opportunities for women to thrive.

Hollie Button, Department Manager in Airside Logistics

What brought you to logistics?

I’ve worked in aviation for 20 years, before at Heathrow Airport in security. I found there were some openings at IAG Cargo, and I thought “Wow, I had no idea what went on in this building,” and realised how huge the sector was. From that moment on, it seemed like such an exciting adventure to be a part of.

What’s it like working as a woman in logistics?

It has changed hugely since I joined, when I was one of a handful of women who worked here. Today, it has grown and, while working in a male-oriented environment wasn’t a shock for me, there are so many more women here now and we see this progress across all departments. Early in 2021, I was nominated for an everywoman award, and it was interesting to see how many women contacted me to say how inspiring it was to see a woman in my role doing what I do.

Naomi Robinson, Head of Business Management

What’s the most significant thing that you’ve learned in your time with IAG Cargo?

From a personal perspective, I’ve developed a growth mindset – so if a challenge is put in front of me, I’ve learned not to shy away from it and use it as an opportunity to learn something new, get a new experience, and improve my skills. It can be daunting, but taking the task head on and using it to learn and develop has only stood me in good stead for further challenges down the line, and opened up new opportunities to gain more experience.

Why is it important for women to be in logistics, and what does the industry need to do to attract more women?

For the success of any company, you want as much diversity as possible. Whether it’s gender, race, religion, sexuality, diversity brings together different perspectives and ways of thinking, more collaboration, creativity, and it will ultimately only yield better results. To attract more women, senior female figureheads across the logistics sector need to be more visible. For IAG Cargo, this has absolutely been the case: we had Lynne Embleton as our former CEO and Emma Adam is now our CFO, who junior and mid-level staff can look to and take inspiration from.

Idoia Martinez, Regional Commercial Manager for Spain and Portugal

What brought you to IAG Cargo?

I had worked with Iberia for a number of years and then transitioned across to IAG Cargo. At the time, I knew very little about cargo, but as soon as I got started, I found the work incredibly dynamic. Working in the field and meeting with different customers was a really interesting and vibrant part of the job. Each customer has a different situation and set of challenges that makes no day the same.

What is the appeal of working for the IAG group?

The breadth that IAG has in its global network and reach, being part of such an enormous operation with so many destinations in its network, complemented by world-leading facilities. Our group of airlines covers 5 continents, we’re able to provide services from India to Chile, from Canada to Thailand. Every day I have the privilege to work with motivating teams in these markets – I’ve learned so much during my time here.

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