“This is a testament to how eager women in the collision repair industry are to gain knowledge and improve their businesses,” said Sheila Loftus, WIN’s executive director.
“Our conference will enable women from all over the country—and the world—to introduce themselves to each other, learn from each other, and brainstorm about how to move our industry forward.”
In addition to panels on how to recruit and retain women in the collision repair industry and how to develop successful business strategies, the conference will allow participants a voice in determining how best to utilize WIN.
“WIN is for winners, and the only way women in this industry will keep winning is to share their bold ideas and innovative strategies for success,” Loftus said. “But winning also means identifying problem areas—areas where, for whatever reason, women are held back.”
WIN solicited input on these problem areas via its conference registration form, and all of these problems are likely to be addressed, formally or informally, at this and/or future WIN events.
Some of the problems areas WIN registrants identified included overcoming the prejudices of customers and colleagues who resist dealing with women; reluctance of men to consider women for jobs on the shop floor; and childcare issues.
WIN registrants are also concerned with the rising number of total losses and new vehicle design.
“WIN isn’t only about women,” Loftus said. “WIN is about creating an inclusive industry, one that recognizes the hopes and dreams of all its members—and does its best to make their realization possible.”
WIN is a not-for-profit association dedicated to encouraging, developing and cultivating opportunities to attract women to collision repair while recognizing excellence, promoting leadership, and fostering a network among the women who are shaping the industry. For more information visit www.womensindustrynetwork.com.