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Editorial From The Advertiser

The automotive industry has traditionally been dominated by men, however today women are very much a large part of what keeps the business going.

Editorial

From salespeople to mechanics, women are playing a greater role in getting our cars on the road and in our drive ways. Eblen Subaru in Glenelg, Adelaide is run by Dealer Principal Lyn White who has been in the industry for 25 years. While the industry has always been associated with men, the perception is slowly changing. “When I started it was definitely a boys’ club,” White says.

“In the past decade however it’s really started to change. There’s definitely a lot more women around now.”

After making the switch from teaching, White has won many awards, including Northern Territory Telstra Businesswoman of the Year 2004. She says she has always focused on her own work. “Right from the start it was just about being the best that I could be,” she says. “I didn’t get caught up in the gender stuff, I just focused on myself and improvement.”

While there has been a noticeable rise in the number of female sales staff, the mechanical side of the industry is still catching up. “There’s this assumption that the work is hard and heavy trade stuff that women can’t do, but we’ve had very successful female mechanics in the past,” White says. And while the work is demanding, it does have its benefits.

“You need to be very committed to do these sorts of jobs but, when you are, it’s extremely rewarding,” she says. Eblen Subaru also has female workers in other roles, including Group Service Manager Jo Brokenshire. She has spent 23 years in the industry, starting out as a receptionist. “I run three sites and manage day-to-day operations for each,” Brokenshire says.

“It’s very important to keep things like technical and customer service running smoothly.” Brokenshire also believes the number of females working in the industry is increasing. “A lot more women are buying their own cars now and they want to deal with other women when they do it,” she says.

– James Hetherington in  Car News · News Corp Australia network · 2 March 2015