General Motors Africa and Middle East marks International Women’s Day by championing its ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion in the region. Underpinned by the knowledge that diverse perspectives and a dynamic team are at the heart of current and future business success, GM is shining the light on over 370 women, further complimenting GM’s overall female representation in its workforce. In addition, thanks to a special collaboration with Stanford University, GM continues to inspire and empower the next generation by bringing The Women in Data Science (WiDS) virtual conference to Dubai, UAE – taking place today, March 8th.
“At General Motors, we are committed to a diverse and inclusive workforce and globally we aspire to be the most inclusive company in the world,” said Luay Al Shurafa, President and Managing Director, GM Africa and Middle East. “From putting in place local employee programs and initiatives to building on our global efforts to support our MENA community, all of this is underpinned by our commitment to our people and what we call the three tenants: Trust, Empathy and Flexibility. Female empowerment is something we always champion at GM and we will continue driving equal opportunities across the board to help better our society and our business.”
Over 370 women in key roles across GM dealerships in the region
The automotive industry is primarily thought of as a male-dominated world, especially at the leadership and dealership level. However, the global automaking giant continues to push to change this – starting from the very top with Mary Barra, the auto industry’s first female CEO. In 2020 Barra was ranked number six in Forbes Power Women List, and is widely regarded as the most consequential leader in today’s auto business
Inspired by this, the commitment to diversity and equality continues to shape GM’s workforce in the Middle East – with a large portion of females in GM working in managerial and technical roles such as engineering, analytics, finance and key aftersales positions at GM’s trusted regional dealership network. This further adds to GM’s already strong lineup of women in the workforce, holding senior leadership roles spanning multiple disciplines from Marketing to Compliance and comprising of chief officers and directors in GM AMEO HQ. This extends to dealerships in GCC, Levant and North Africa, too, representing a wide range of skills sets, where KSA and Kuwait have the highest volume of women in the workplace, following GM’s Middle Eastern Headquarters in the UAE.
Inspire to empower at regional WiDS virtual conference
GM continues to be a key advocate in inspiring future STEM leaders in the region and beyond, contributing to GM AMEO’s alignment with the UAE’s gender balance vision. Its most recent partnership sees GM join forces with one of the world’s most leading educational institutions, Stanford University and as a result brings to Dubai, UAE the virtual Women in Data Science Conference (WiDS) for the first time in the region, taking place on International Women’s Day.
“Data science is at the heart of our journey to help create a future that is safe, equitable and all-electric. Investing in the development of this talented workforce is critical. That’s why we’re proud to support Stanford’s Global Women In Data Science Conference,” stated Sheri Marshall, Head of Global Analytic Capability Development at GM International.
The regional WiDS Conference profiles professionals and students in various fields to share technical trends, discuss ethics in machine learning and share how data science is advancing by solving complex issues in health, environment and other industries.
“WiDS is our chance to take our One Team behavior outside the GM walls to collaborate and celebrate wins for all women in data science,” added Stacy Pawlovich, Analytics Enablement Leader at GM International.
Amongst the global panelists in the event’s impressive agenda is Preeti Suba – Customer Experience (CX) Analyst at GM Africa and Middle East. Leading the conversation in the ‘Data Science Around the Globe at General Motors’ session, Preeti will shed light on her experience in operation management, analysis experience and customer relationship management. Other panelists including Alba Oliveira, Marketing BI Analyst, GM South Africa and Aga Webb
IT Director, Global Marketing Systems Development, GM.
Commenting on her participation, Preeti adds “I’m honored to be able to take part in an event so close to my heart as is the WiDs, alongside other reputable peers with a common goal to inspire future STEM enthusiasts. As a STEM graduate myself, I have spent more than eight years using my statistical and logical skills to help drive GM’s Database Management, CX Initiatives, Competitive Intelligence, Integration and Collaboration programs, and I can’t wait to share my story with future STEM leaders.”