Foster responds to dealer demand for female-only training

Foster’s women-only dealer training, headed by regional support manager Melissa Gates.

Foster Refrigerator and Gamko UK held a women-only dealer training event as part of a new pilot scheme at their King’s Lynn manufacturing facility in June.

The refrigeration manufacturers spoke to their dealers and customer base to establish if there were any additional dealer training events needed by the industry, in a bid to deliver exactly what the market needs.

The suggestion of ‘women only’ was made by several of the firms’ customers, so a small pilot event was held on 21-22 June in King’s Lynn, Norfolk.

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Representatives from across the industry attended, with the majority of presenters also being women. The pilot was organised by Melissa Gates, regional support manager for Foster and Gamko UK.

Gates, who has worked for the company for 10 years, quickly discovered some women relished the opportunity to immerse themselves in the brand alongside other women. Any pilot schemes the sector deems as a success will be rolled out regularly, in addition to the traditional sessions the company has offered for many years.

Gates commented: “We pride ourselves on listening to what our dealers want and delivering it whenever we can.

“Members of our industry said they’d be interested in attending a woman-only dealer training session, which is why we held the pilot event.

“We’ve been really pleased with the feedback and found the 2 days to be a great way to share experiences, and for our delegates to become Foster and Gamko experts. We’re happy to hear from anyone else in the industry who’d like to target specific sectors or groups for further sessions.”

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12 Comments

  1. The Oracle said:

    Outstanding!!!!!!!!!!!!!! why on earth do you need a women’s only training day in my experience there are not enough women in this trade but its not because they lack training days its more to do with the old men’s network that is so good at telling this trade what it needs! Many of the women that are in this trade are far more proficient than most of the men.

    I would also love to see the reaction to a training day for men only

  2. Andrea Matkin said:

    Wow!!! Whatever happened to equality in the workplace?

  3. Beverley Birkinshaw said:

    I find this a challenging subject, and I am probably slightly offended that there would be a need for female only training days, what does it say about the men and the women in our industry!

    is the training simpler, less complicated words!

  4. Big Cath said:

    What an insult to women !! Are we incapable of understanding when a man explains the same things to us. Are we so inept that we cannot cope when learning alongside men. This is outrageous and any woman who has requested this should be ashamed of themselves. We have fought long and hard for equality and this kind of thing sets us back 40 years. Any one old enough to remember the 60’s and 70’s will remember how hard it was for women to be recognised as equal to men in the workplace. MAN UP GIRLS !!

  5. A voice said:

    I’ve just had to check my calendar to make sure it’s 2017 and not 1957. I’m amazed that not only did this idea get passed but that it’s actually being advertised in a positive light? Wow! In a world where equality in the work place is supposed to be at the forefront of industry Fosters have just taken a huge step back in time whilst demonstrating the most blatant case of gender discrimination in the workplace.

  6. Industry worker said:

    Ditto Cathy. Lets just hope Fosters know what they are doing. Think back a short while when Fosters has another industry issue to deal with. Imagine if someone got a discrimination lawyer involved to challenge this.

  7. Pankhurst 2017 said:

    From price fixing to gender discrimination… don’t think Foster will be winning any awards in the near future! Dread to think what’s next!

  8. Roz Scourfield said:

    Absolutely agree! I’ve been in this industry for 37 years. All my refrigeration knowledge started with Foster training, which at the time was excellent. It never held me back that it was a male dominated training session!! I thought it was April the 1st too when I read that headline. Wonder how they’ll get away with the one. If it was the other way round there would be an uproar.. Unbelievable…..!

  9. Old Timer said:

    Well done Foster.
    First the CMA issue……now walking along the narrow line of discrimination. Can’t wait to see what’s next!

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