WAL is a movement for change aimed at positively encouraging gender parity in airfreight and, more broadly in the aviation and logistics sectors.
Launched in March 2021 by Céline Hourcade from Change Horizon and Emma Murray from Meantime Communications, WAL is mobilisng businesses, trade associations and individual professionals to advocate for change and define concrete targets and an action plan to achieve gender equality in air cargo industry.
Raise awareness of women air cargo professionals by celebrating and promoting their great achievements in the industry
Maintain a public database of female speakers in aviation and logistics
Set-up forums at global, local, or company levels to share best practices and actionable advice among industry peers
Establish a knowledge centre with industry facts and figures to raise awareness on current gender gaps within air cargo, including the gender pay gap and other inequalities, and open public debates to challenge the status quo
Increase gender balance in senior management and leadership roles
Push for progress in broader diversity and inclusion metrics across the industry
We believe it is everyone’s responsibility to contribute to making a positive change and ensuring our industry is diverse and inclusive.
Our informal mentoring programme supports the development of talented women in aviation and logistics.
WAL mentorship is a light scheme across the industry and beyond the limits of a specific company offering participants a different perspective in career development and opportunities to be exposed to different practices and culture.
We are looking for WAL mentors with different levels of seniority, backgrounds and experience, who have knowledge and wisdom to pass on and with a real interest for diversity and inclusion and a strong commitment to gender equality in the workplace.
There are specific focus areas where many women feel they would benefit from help in developing in order to advance in their career:
Look and sound like a senior leader; radiate confidence; remain poised and self-confident at all times, especially during challenges; listen before advocating.
Intentionally impact what people think and say about you; be the author of the stories people tell about you; identify five words or phrases you want people to use when they talk about you and make sure you are bringing these characteristics to every interaction.
Have a broader, long-term perspective about the industry; ask strategic questions; become a good interpreter and storyteller.
Know how and when to gain support for your ideas and impact important decisions; build coalitions around your important ideas and initiatives – know who to inform, how they like to receive messages, what is ‘in it for them’ and gain their support; know what works in communicating with senior leaders.
The WAL team promotes the initiative to recruit mentors and mentees, provides the framework and guidelines, help with the matchmaking process to pair mentors and mentees, organise a kick-off webinar and a feedback session.
The matchmaking process will be based on the profiles and objectives of mentees and mentors. The WAL team will try its best to assign a mentor with experience, knowledge or wisdom of value to the mentee.
The structure of the mentoring relationship, the objectives, lengths, set-up will depend on each of the mentors and mentees and each situation will be different.
From time to time, WAL will be promoting the mentoring scheme through media channels, to encourage participation, share best practices, highlight benefits of such learning and development practices. If you would like to be part of that messaging, please let us know.
Here are our suggestions for a successful mentorship…
Each mentoring relationship is unique, but there are some overall principles that apply to all mentoring relationships.
Every mentoring relationship is different and the role that a mentor plays is also different, depending on the situation and needs of the mentee. In your initial meetings, you’ll want to discuss which of these common mentoring roles is needed in your particular relationship:
A mentor can serve as a guide, ally, role model, or in a number of other capacities, but a mentor is not a saviour, a parent, or an enabler. When mentors fall in to one of the following traps, it can damage the mentoring relationship and/or the mentee’s ability to meet his/her current or future goals:
Starting out with a mentoring relationship can be awkward, especially if you have never been in such a relationship before. But putting in time and energy as you embark upon a mentoring relationship is critical to set you up for success. If you don’t take the time to prepare, you will likely limit the eventual effectiveness of the mentoring. You’ll need some best practices for launching a mentoring relationship, and some initial meeting conversation starters to enable that successful outcome.
Tips for beginning a mentoring relationship
Use these questions in your first meetings as mentor and mentee to help solidify your successful working relationship:
It is the responsibility of the mentee to drive the mentoring relationship forward by setting up meetings, and sharing goals for those meetings. The mentee “owns” the mentoring process and is responsible for whatever results from a mentoring relationship. These tasks are part of that responsibility:
You are underway – You have embarked on a mentoring relationship! These tips will help guide you as you continue to work together:
As long as a mentoring relationship is mutually beneficial to the mentor and mentee, there is no reason it would need to end. However, some relationships continue even after they are no longer productive or valuable. It’s important to be able to recognize the signs that a mentoring relationship should end and to employ some best practices to end on a good note.
Signs a mentoring relationship should end