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International Women’s Day: Championing the Resilience of Women in Logistics

Just as the International Women’s Day movement has continued for well over a century, creating a gender-equal future of work remains an ongoing work-in-progress.

Digitalization has been critical in helping businesses to transform and survive. In the logistics sector, the rapid development of technology-enabled solutions to reduce risk and strengthen resilience in the global supply chain has led the way for greater diversity. Likewise in Rhenus, our culture is characterised by openness, diversity and internationality.

As we round up our series on International Women’s Day, we highlight the resilience that our female colleagues have shown, as they lead by example to set new industry standards, redefine the customer experience, and build a more robust and agile logistics sector of the future. May Liu, Managing Director at Rhenus Singapore, South Korea and Philippines, Marcia Morita, Country Manager of Rhenus Project Logistics Japan, and Vonny Viyenti Mala, Air & Ocean Manager of PT., Rhenus Logistics Indonesia, share their insights on emerging challenges and opportunities for the industry, and why having a resilient work culture matters.

What does resilience mean to you in your work in Rhenus? 
 

Marcia: I consider myself a positive person. Yet even while I’m fortunate to be doing what I love, there are times when challenges and obstacles set me back and affect me emotionally. As the years pass and with experience, I find myself to be calmer – to be able to recover from difficult moments, and being better at adapting to diverse situations and challenges.

Why does resilience matter to you as a leader?

May: Resilience enables a positive approach to work, which in turn enables better problem-solving and helps to motivate the teams.

Marcia: Being calm and flexible, and being kind with ourselves and others, brings us the capability to take on a more holistic view and carry the team forward.

Vonny: As a leader, it is important to be resilient to set an example for our teams, by demonstrating a positive attitude and optimistic outlook even in high-pressure situations.

Tell us an example of an initiative when a resilient mindset proved to be essential?

May: As you know, the coronavirus outbreak significantly impacted the aviation industry, with flight cancellations all over the world. Singapore was among the worst-hit countries, with the suspension of operations in two terminals, and up to 90% reduction of scheduled flights compared to the year before. On the other hand, due to lower air capacity and fallen demand for air freight as well, some businesses shifted to using Ocean transportation. Instead of buckling down, we saw an opportunity to evolve our operations to be more flexible. We have conducted a few cross-department training and job rotations in 2020, such as training our air operations team so that they can be easily deployed between different departments.

As we face new and evolving challenges in logistics, what areas/opportunities can we look forward to?

Vonny: As we live in a digitalized age, there is scope to provide more digital logistics solutions, to go beyond tracking and tracing on-going shipments to also be able to check on rates and make online bookings. We see increasing popularity in the use of multimodal solutions and dedicated charters to meet evolving needs in logistics, rather than specialized solutions.

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Rhenus SE & Co. KG
Rhenus-Platz 1
59439 Holzwickede
Germany
E-Mail: info@de.rhenus.com