Inspiring stories from top women in transport

“WOMEN in Transport and Business” was the theme of a recent event hosted in Durban by the Transport Forum and saw eight female industry executives sharing their inspiring experiences and life stories.

The speakers were Amanda Siyengo (pictured) from Transnet Port Terminals (TPT); Kathy Bell, Standard Bank; Lebo Letsoalo, African Women in Supply Chain Association; Margrit Wolff, Mercury Freight; Portia Nkuna, Gautrain Management Agency; Michelle Pearton, eThekwini Transport Authority; Palesa Phili, Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry; and Ingrid Ramalekana-Werz, Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa.

Among the insights shared by speakers were the challenges of integrating work life with home life, advice on how they have overcome certain tough situations and the importance of education and working together to create a better future for South Africa.

“I felt honoured to be part of such an esteemed panel of business women and leaders who had such inspirational stories to share. It was also interesting to hear so many common themes and challenges raised during the discussions,” said Siyengo, TPT’s GM: KZN Operations for Bulk, Breakbulk and Cars.

She added that time management when juggling work with family and home life was a common challenge faced by women in business. “Nowadays people don’t refer to ‘work-life balance’ but rather being able to effectively integrate the two into one’s life.

“Another major challenge that some of my fellow panellists spoke about today was the importance of education and empowering women in business. I do feel proud to work for an organisation that prioritises the upliftment of women and youth by actively offering programmes and initiatives that help develop and nurture our growth within the business.

“There are a lot of women in operations at TPT - myself included - and there are exciting times ahead for us with Transnet’s vision to connect with other countries and ultimately grow in Africa,” Siyengo said.

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