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Why Louise believes having more female leaders matters

26 May

Louise joined the Group just over a year ago as a Regional Director. Like many other female colleagues at Travis Perkins, Louise is making a name for herself in what is typically thought of as a male-dominated industry. We sat down and spoke with Louise to hear why she thinks Travis Perkins is a great place for women to bring their career and to get a better idea of how she is encouraging diversity and inclusion across the Group.

Why is Travis Perkins a great place for women to bring their career?

The Group is dedicated to allowing individuals to be the best version of themselves. One of our mottos is, “You be you. It makes us, us”. This couldn’t be truer. We know we need to have a diverse team to support us as a group and to allow us to grow. To show how serious we are about this, we have changed our parental policy, which is the best I have ever seen. This shows our dedication to bringing in people that might not have thought about joining Travis Perkins - perhaps they are a parent or would like to be in the near future. We are also creating more flexible roles within our network, again, to help those that might need support with childcare, or those who are in part-time education, like Charlotte.

Have you got any advice for women thinking of applying for a job at a builders’ merchants?

My first job was at a builders’ merchants, at just 17 years old. I can’t say I saw it being a lifelong career, it’s more something that I tried out and really enjoyed. I learnt to work hard, and I would say that in this trade you get what you give. I’m now 36 years old, and I’m a Regional Director at what I think is the best builders’ merchants - Travis Perkins. There are so many opportunities out there for women in the industry.

To this day, I sometimes see people's eyebrows raise when they find out I'm in a leadership role within the builders’ merchants industry. But in terms of my teams, they’re incredible and don’t make any assumptions. Overall though, there is still some work that needs to be done to raise awareness of the women who are successfully taking a lead in the industry.

How are you encouraging diversity and inclusion?

There's a lot of work being done across the Group and I've personally hosted several talks on a range of subjects. Most recently I hosted a virtual session about imposter syndrome, and it worked really well. It gave people the opportunity to feel safe and talk about their experience of feeling as though they got to where they are through luck. We discussed what we can do to combat this and how we can learn from it.

Why is it important to have women in leadership roles and to generally have a diverse leadership team?

You get different perspectives from different people. The more variety you have in a team – at all levels – the more suggestions and different outlooks that are brought to the table. We don’t just need more women. It’s about having people from different age groups and backgrounds. You need a good mix to get the best possible ideas.

What do you think is good advice for women who want to take on a leadership role?

Just believe in yourself. I think this is really important, and it’s a reminder that we need to fight imposter syndrome. For me, I need to remind myself not to doubt my abilities.

Would you recommend Travis Perkins as a place to work?

If you want to work for a company that keeps you safe at work, values the work you do, invests in your training and development so you can complete your role to the best of your ability, and genuinely cares about you, then this is the company for you. Travis Perkins is an extension of my family and supports me not only in my job but personally too.

Find out more about working with the Travis Perkins Group

Why not learn more about what it means to be a part of our team? Check out our stories to hear from more members of the Group. Or, if you’re ready to make your next career move, browse our latest branch, store and showroom jobs . We look forward to hearing from you.

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