Empowering Women’s Voices in Manufacturing

Empowering Women’s Voices in Manufacturing

March 8, 2024, marked International Women’s Day, a global celebration of women’s achievements and a call to action for continued progress toward gender equality.

As CEO of Delta-Q Technologies, I was thrilled to participate in a panel discussion titled “Amplifying Voices and Empowering Communication” as part of Annex Business Media’s virtual summit, Women in Manufacturing 2024. Sharing a common goal of promoting gender equity within Canadian manufacturing, the summit brought together industry leaders and professionals for a day of insightful and valuable discussions.

Joining me on the panel were two inspiring female leaders: Jenny Bourdreau, Vice President of Supply Chain at CertainTeed Canada, and Mariela Castano-Kunst, Senior Vice President and COO at Kunst Solutions. Together, we explored concrete ways women can champion their voices and empower others to do the same. Here are the key takeaways.

Finding a Voice and Overcoming Imposter Syndrome 

Women often feel pressured to be likable, yet need assertiveness for workplace success. Delta-Q Technologies promotes this balance by facilitating strong relationships across all team levels and encouraging open communication to align on common goals and aspirations, creating a foundation for a collaborative team.

Coaching programs help employees express themselves effectively. As Brené Brown, world-renowned author, professor, and TEDx speaker, says, “Clear is kind.” Leaders especially need good communication skills.

Imposter syndrome can affect women, even high achievers. Overcoming it involves recognizing the feelings, self-reflection on achievements and contributions, and seeking feedback from a professional network to gain confidence and diminish self-doubt.

Leveraging the Power of a Professional Network

Networking has never been easier thanks to online tools that help us showcase our skills and connect with others. Yet, it’s important to remember that valuable connections can also be made offline in everyday situations.

In the workplace, women can boost their networking opportunities by actively participating in meetings, asking thoughtful questions, and viewing challenges through a leadership perspective, thereby showcasing their potential.

Networking is reciprocal; many successful leaders have benefitted from the support of their networks and should give back by mentoring and advocating for inclusive hiring practices to empower the next generation.

As part of a network of CEOs, I’ve found immense value in collaborating on issues, exchanging ideas, and gaining new insights. This external support complements internal resources and offers a broader platform for celebrating achievements.

Inspiring Action on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) are not just buzzwords – they are essential for a thriving organization. It is now known that there is a correlation between a diverse workforce, particularly at leadership levels, and increased shareholder value. 

Focusing on DEI at events like industry summits and panel discussions is an excellent way to inspire companies to embrace these principles. By sharing best practices and success stories, we can collectively pave the way for a more inclusive and equitable future.

In sectors like manufacturing, men can help dismantle barriers by acknowledging women’s contributions and advocating for fair hiring practices.

Delta-Q Technologies is dedicated to an inclusive culture where female employees thrive, knowing their success benefits everyone – the workforce, the company, and the entire manufacturing industry.


Written By:

Sarah MacKinnon, CEO at Delta-Q Technologies

Sarah MacKinnon has been part of the Delta-Q team since 2012, when she joined the Company as CFO. In that role, Sarah worked closely with the CEO/Co-Founder and Board of Directors on driving topline growth and profitability, resulting in the acquisition of Delta-Q by ZAPI GROUP. Sarah was appointed Co-CEO in 2019 and CEO in 2024 and is responsible for all aspects of the company’s strategy, people, and operations.