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International Women's Day Q&A


This International Women’s Day, we have spoken with our MachairWind project team and their experience working in a predominately female-led project and wider project support.

International Women's Day

How does this year’s IWD theme of ‘Inspire Inclusion’ resonate with you in your everyday work life?

‘It is so great to see the renewable energy space changing – it is awesome to see a massive project like MachairWind be led by a predominantly female team. I am inspired by the women I have the pleasure of working with, and this helps me to see what my future career could look like too.’ Anna Steen, Solicitor at ScottishPower Renewables

‘SPR can have lots of mottos, training courses, it’s all well and necessary but in the end, what matters is what we do, each one of us, as employees. I strongly believe that every single one of us has something great to bring to a team. For us to be able to express it, we need to be in a comfortable, trusting, and supportive environment.’ – Pauline Andrieu, MachairWind Development Project Manager 

What do you feel is the significance of having a diverse team, in terms of working together and supporting each other at work?

Being relatively new to this unique and diverse team, I have felt welcomed, trusted and respected from day one.  Any pre-conceived concerns about fitting in were allyed due to there being such a diverse team who have so much to offer, working together using their wide skill-set, expertise and experience.  Together, everyone provides a genuinely healthy and supportive working environment.  Like many others, I am currently going through the menopause, but this diverse team (men and women alike) are on it by being aware, supportive, and mindful of what this means, especially when it comes to the hot flushes, mood swings and brain fog symptoms, which is real relief, not just for myself but us together as a team! – Joanne Cochrane, MachairWind Assistant Project Manager

My time spent on a graduate placement within the MachairWind team was a joy. I was grateful to work with so many outstanding women. Particularly, in leadership positions, which allowed me to learn from their vast amount of knowledge of the energy and renewables industry.

The diverse range of backgrounds these women come from was the most interesting factor for me. Previous roles included an engineer, lawyer, actress, graphic designer, teacher, and a bus driver, as well as working mothers. It is amazing to see how the team apply their knowledge and skills to develop a wonderful project. Jenna Smith, Commercial Graduate

The MachairWind team work on a lot of STEM events for children/young adults. Do you feel it is important to encourage young girls to follow STEM career paths and what advice do you give them for doing this?

I feel the importance of having young females in any industry pays dividends to a healthy working environment. I have worked in both predominantly male and also female environments as well as equally mixed and it is in those environments where job satisfaction came most. I would advise any young girl who has an interest in STEM, whether it be an outdoor ‘hands on’ ambition, technical, IT or environmental ambition, to do what makes them smile, what makes them excited to know more and genuinely triggers a real interest. It’s not work if you love what you’re doing, it’s an evolving part of what makes you who you are.  Deborah Bryce , Community Engagement Manager

What advice would you give to other young girls/women who would like to follow in a similar career path to you?

It’s true what they say about ‘no wrong path’ – follow your interests and grow your network. Most careers these days are agile and look like a swiggly line rather than a linear line of ‘progression’, so don’t be disheartened if you need to take some sidesteps rather ‘step ups’ to get into the field you want to be in – grasp opportunities as they arise! Ellen Kane, MachairWind Stakeholder Manager

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