Breaking Barriers as the First Woman on the Board of Directors of the ECG

Breaking Barriers as the First Woman on the Board of Directors of the ECG

Automotive Purchasing and Supply Chain — 2023-10-13

News from ECG

This breakthrough not only highlights the progress towards gender equality in traditionally male-dominated spaces like automotive supply chain and finished vehicle logistics, but also paves the way for greater representation and opportunities for women.

The Changing Landscape for Women in the Automotive Industry

While Jasiulionienė acknowledges that the industry has been predominantly male-dominated, she firmly believes that positive changes are happening, with more women assuming responsible positions in automotive companies. She expresses her optimism about achieving a better gender balance in the future.

“I have a feeling that things are changing for the better, and that the automotive supply chain and logistics space is becoming much more welcoming to women. Now, there are just more women in responsible positions in the automotive industry as a whole, so I think it's just really a matter of time and we'll see a much better balance moving forward,” she said. 

Journey to the ECG Board

Recalling her initial reaction upon learning about her candidacy and the subsequent election process, Jasiulionienė shares that while she felt some anxiety, the overall experience was smooth and welcoming, with the existing board members extending a warm reception.

Jasiulionienė confesses to always having been fascinated by the work done by ECG, particularly their ability to unite competitors and drive meaningful initiatives for the benefit of logistics providers. Her motivation for joining the board was to contribute her knowledge, energy, and resources to sustain and enhance these impactful initiatives.

Highlighting the significant impact of ECG on its members and the industry, Jasiulionienė stated, "ECG is actively driving positive change for its members. It's truly remarkable to witness how different companies, despite being competitors, can come together and collaborate on initiatives that benefit us all. ECG is at the forefront of developing tools that enhance our daily operations and serve as valuable reference points for making crucial business decisions. Coming from a background in general cargo, I have not encountered any other association that can make such a tangible and meaningful impact on its members. In my election speech, I emphasised the importance of continuing these initiatives.

My motivation lies in investing my knowledge, energy, and resources to ensure the continuation and even further advancement of these projects. I believe we can achieve even more significant results in the future, pushing the boundaries of what we can accomplish together," she added. 

And just as she emphasised in her election speech, Jasiulionienė maintains that her primary goal is to be useful and make a meaningful impact. While she has personal interests in capacity issues, digitalisation, and optimisation, she is also committed to working on any area that is important for the industry as a whole. She is a strong believer of the fact that collaboration and coming together as an industry are crucial to addressing specific challenges and finding common solutions.

Through the course of the conversation, Jasiulionienė mentioned several initiatives undertaken by ECG, such as developing standards, safety regulations, and collaborative projects like the FVL cost index, always commending the industry body for bringing together competitors to create beneficial tools and address common industry challenges, and emphasising the strength that comes from collaboration and finding solutions together.

The Responsibilities of a Woman Leader

Acknowledging the expectations that come with her appointment, Jasiulionienė expressed her intention to support and encourage more women to participate actively at higher levels in the industry. She mentioned ongoing initiatives and discussions with other women in the sector, aiming to create a professional network that focuses on the unique challenges faced by women in logistics, which would certainly be something to look out for. 

But more than anything, Jasiulionienė believes that loving the job, being consistent, and seizing opportunities are essential for success. At least, that has been her personal mantra, something that she’s hoping more women will follow. She encouraged women not to be afraid to accept opportunities and to believe in themselves and their abilities. Jasiulionienė emphasised the importance of passion, consistency, and open-mindedness in pursuing a fulfilling career.

"When you love the job you're doing, it transcends any notions of limited choices. Women in logistics, including those in the automotive sector, are here because we genuinely love what we do. The key lies in embracing that passion, maintaining consistency, and being open to seizing opportunities. In an industry where gender balance may not be optimal, it becomes crucial for women, and perhaps everyone, to focus on personal growth and not shy away from accepting the opportunities that come our way,” said Jasiulionienė, emphasising the importance of passion and self-belief in pursuing a fulfilling career.

We often tend to underestimate ourselves, questioning our abilities and wondering if we are deserving. The essential thing is to cast aside those doubts and wholeheartedly believe in our skills and worth. Maintaining this unwavering attitude and consistency is empowering. The message I want to convey is not only to women but to all individuals in the sector — we are here because we love what we do, and that love is the foundation for our success and fulfilment."

On The Personal Front

Work aside, Jasiulionienė mentions her family, including her 12-year-old son, who inspires her with his unique interests and challenges. Discussing how her son serves as a constant source of inspiration, she shared: "He truly inspires me in many ways because he has always embraced unique and challenging interests. From the age of five, he immersed himself in playing chess and achieved remarkable success, becoming the Lithuanian champion at the tender age of eight. However, he decided to explore new horizons and is now learning Chinese, another complex endeavour. I find myself captivated by his journey and accomplishments. Sometimes, I reflect upon his determination and think that if he can tackle such demanding pursuits, then I, too, can take on difficult challenges in life. It's a mutual exchange of inspiration, where his resilience fuels my own belief in overcoming obstacles."

Jasiulionienė also admits that she enjoys staying fit through exercise and shares her passion for travelling, both for work and leisure.

Looking Ahead

Speaking about the road ahead, Jasiulionienė expressed her excitement about the unknown and the opportunity to do something interesting and impactful in her career. Her focus remains on being engaged in an industry she loves, embracing growth opportunities, and making a positive difference, no matter how small.

Jasiulionienė's appointment as the first woman on the board of directors of the Association of European Vehicle Logistics (ECG) marks a significant step towards greater gender diversity and equality in the automotive industry. Her journey highlights the changing landscape for women, with more opportunities opening up for leadership roles. Her commitment to making a meaningful impact, her passion for collaboration, and her dedication to supporting women in the industry serve as an inspiration to others. As the industry continues to evolve, Jasiulionienė's appointment is a testament to the progress being made and the positive direction in which the automotive industry is heading.