The automotive industry is still very much a man’s world, but this family-owned business is making strides in gender equality. Get to know the women working together at Jaguar Land Rover Laval to keep women at the forefront of business and on equal footing with their male colleagues.

Amanda Falcone, Eman Akar and Adrienne McGrath all work in different departments of Jaguar Land Rover Laval, but all three women say they are grateful to work in an environment that not only respects female employees, but pushes them forward in an otherwise male-dominated industry. It’s 2018 and women everywhere – even in Hollywood – are still fighting wage gaps and demanding equal pay to their male counterparts. Now, more than ever, it’s important to see women in leadership roles, moving up the corporate ladder and earning respect in their particular fields. Here’s a closer look into how these three hard-working women appreciate their company’s policies on gender equality.

Amanda Falcone
At just 18 years old, straight out of an all-girls high school, Falcone says her job as a part-time receptionist in 2007 took a lot of getting used to. As the only female on the evening shift, she says she felt way out of her comfort zone.

Today, 12 years later, Falcone is in her element around the Jaguar Land Rover Laval dealership. Falcone credits her success to her feisty personality, her self-confidence and a welcoming team. Falcone says her first manager, Alain, saw her true potential and helped groom her to move ahead in the company. “He showed me respect and became my mentor,” she explains. “Being the leader of an all-male sales team, [he] led the others to respect me in the same way.”

Falcone often says she’s grown up at Jaguar Land Rover Laval. As her career developed, she says she never felt held back as a woman in a male-dominated work setting. On the contrary, she thinks she brings a unique and welcome perspective to the team dynamic.

Over the past 12 years, she has worked almost every different position – from receptionist to administrative assistant – and is currently the Human Resources Coordinator. Having worked in so many areas, no one knows the inner workings of the dealership like she does. “I know almost everything,” she says. “Except how to fix a car. That’s something I haven’t mastered…yet!”

Eman Akar
Akar began working in the automotive industry a decade ago and has been with Jaguar Land Rover Laval for about two years. At the beginning of her career, Akar faced some challenges as the only female employee – often the youngest one on the team, too. Today, she says much has changed and her present employer is very sensitive to both gender equality and ethnic diversity. Akar was hired into a key position when Jaguar Land Rover Laval first hired her. As the Finance and Insurance Specialist, Akar finalizes all sales made at the dealership and works with many different staff members everyday. She says she is always treated with respect and kindness. “We honestly feel like we are a big family and we truly work together as a team,” Akar explains.

Fellow employees Lina Bonta and Iascula Provetti agree, adding that the cultural diversity in the company also adds to the camaraderie. “I’m Italian,” says Bonta, “Iascula is Brazilian, and Eve is Québécoise. We all have different backgrounds, but that’s what makes this team unique,” she explains.

Being a woman in a male-dominated industry often presents many challenges for women, but Akar feels appreciated and respected in her office. She says she always feels like her ideas are being listened to and taken seriously by her male counterparts and her bosses – something women all over the world continue to fight for in many industries.

Adrienne McGrath
After making the switch from the fashion industry to Jaguar Land Rover Laval just over a year ago, McGrath says she couldn’t be happier. “One would think that the fashion industry would be supportive of women, but in my experience it is unfortunate that many women don’t support each other and the men in the industry run the show,” she explains. “Working for Jaguar Land Rover Laval has already been one of the best professional experiences of my life.”

McGrath says the owners of the dealership have been helpful and encouraging, giving her room to grow as an employee in an open, respectful environment. McGrath also says she always felt accepted by her male colleagues and superiors. “All the men in this company treat me and my fellow female colleagues with respect. Men and women are equal here,” she says.“Jaguar Land Rover Laval employs several women in various departments of the company and we are all very friendly and supportive of each other. I think that is because the company culture is egalitarian. We work as a collective.”