Breaking Ground, Breaking Barriers: Menard Asia’s Commitment to Inclusivity and Equality

Menard International Women’s Day

As we celebrate International Women’s Day, we’re proud to spotlight the journeys of four incredible women from our business units in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Malaysia. Here, Fahima, Sakana, Danita, and Liza tell us their stories and the unfolding of their career in construction.

Danita Apriyani: Defying Stereotypes, Pioneering Change

With a background in healthcare, Danita Apriyani now working as HSE Supervisor at Menard Indonesia.

“I didn’t come from a family of construction, nor did I have any construction exposure growing up. But seeing how buildings are designed has always fascinated me,” Danita reveals. Transitioning from a career in healthcare to civil engineering, she found herself drawn to the dynamic environment of construction.

At Menard, Danita found a supportive community that values diversity and empowers women to excel in their roles. “I’ve learned a lot of new things that a typical office job wouldn’t have presented to me. I enjoy the on-site interaction with everyone and the fact that I’m not just learning about construction work but also developing people skills, which are equally valuable,” she shares.

Danita’s advice to women pursuing careers in construction echoes determination: “Never doubt your instincts or knowledge. You can do anything you set your mind to!”

Sakana Som: Nurturing Growth in a Supportive Environment

Sakana Som, a graduate from the Institute of Technology of Cambodia, started her journey in the construction immediately after graduating. Now working as business developer at Menard Cambodia, Sakana cherishes the opportunity to connect and forge meaningful connections with clients and partners, while also presenting Menard’s innovative technology through her role.

“In construction, there’s always something new to learn and the more I discover, the more my curiosity grows. The ever-evolving technology landscape in construction encourages me to further develop myself within the sector. Aside from that, the people around me also keeps me thriving in this industry. With the support of my team and leaders, I’ve discovered a reservoir of untapped potential within myself,” she responds when asked what made her start a career in construction.

Fahima Shahadat: Navigating Challenges and Embracing Opportunities

Fahima Shahadat, now working as Country Representative for Menard Bangladesh, entered the construction field with a mission to contribute to her country infrastructure development.

When asked what challenges she had to overcome while working in construction, she responded: “Women are appointed to display the gender balance & involved in minor inputs, Women are judged as less capable than men in field works, Women are judged as less capable in work/life balance options (misunderstand for motherhood), Feels great pressure in family as well as society to explain her professions due to negative mindset on engineering works for women specially at site…” the list goes on and on.

Despite everything, Fahima remained steadfast in her pursuit, working extra miles to overcome the challenges: “I gave extra efforts to learn the full process in addition to my specific assignments. I boldly participated in discussions/meetings and gave my opinions. I used to work extra in the late evening after my duties at home. I built support system in my family (especially to take care of my kids) and overcome the social barriers with my positive attitudes.”

As a mother, wife, and dedicated professional, Fahima’s journey is a testament to resilience and empowerment. Despite facing challenges and stereotypes, Fahima defied the odds and established herself as a respected leader in her field. Her message to women in construction: “Treat yourself as an engineer rather than “woman engineer”, focus on your work, walk an extra mile, and raise your voice in odd situations. Your opinion matters.”

Liza Tajul Aripin: Navigating Construction from Theory to Practice

With over 15 years of experience within the civil engineering industry, Liza is now working as Assistant Technical Manager at Menard Malaysia.

Liza’s introduction to civil engineering was serendipitous, sparked by her academic pursuits rather than an innate passion for construction. Despite initially lacking interest in the field, Liza’s perspective shifted during her university studies, where she discovered the practical applications of her theoretical knowledge.

Today as an assistant technical manager, Liza plays a pivotal role in business development. Her day-to-day responsibilities include spearheading sales initiatives, crafting project proposals, and liaising with clients to showcase Menard’s innovative solutions

Balancing her demanding role with her responsibilities as a mother of two, Liza exemplifies resilience. While juggling professional and familial obligations, Liza ensures that her family remains her top priority, managing their needs with grace and efficiency

Reflecting on her journey, Liza offers sage advice to aspiring women in construction: believe in your capabilities, embrace challenges as learning opportunities.

We recognize the significance of International Women’s Day as a moment to reflect on the invaluable contributions of women in our organization. We acknowledge that for many women, the journey in our industry can be challenging, with obstacles to overcome and barriers to break. That’s why Women’s Day is not only a celebration but also a reminder of our ongoing effort to achieve gender equality and inclusivity.

At Menard Asia, we are committed to provide equal opportunities for men and women to grow within our companies.

  • Commitment to Inclusivity and Equality

Menard Asia is a specialist geotechnical EPC contractor offering ground improvement and remediation works in Malaysia , Indonesia , Vietnam, Singapore, Bangladesh, CambodiaPhilippinesThailand and other South-East Asia Countries

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