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In 2022, IPAF President Karin Nars launched the 'Women in Powered Access' initiative, inviting women of all ages and different professional roles to share their stories of inclusivity. The initiative includes a number of key actions, including providing a platform to tell the stories of women in powered access in both the media and at industry events. IPAF will also use its own print, web and social media platforms to share these inspirational case studies and will also continue to invite prominent women speakers to present at IPAF events. IPAF will share a series of case studies at www.ipaf.org/casestudy to communicate the opportunities our industry offers women.
Training Manager, Elevo-Kiloutou, Italy
How did you come into this industry, and what attracted you to it? Around 12 years ago, I answered a job ad; Elevo’s owner [Sergio Gualandris] asked me if I would be interested in starting a new training project: There was already talk of training on equipment and the ownership intended to start a service, creating a team within the company that looked after training. I immediately liked this possibility and accepted the challenge of developing something new for me. The owners had already heard about IPAF and they told me: “We have to work with them, we have to learn from them.” So, I began to think about everything necessary to create a training centre and to pass all the courses necessary to first become an operator, then a demonstrator and finally an instructor. Thanks also to Ketty Furlan’s valuable advice, then a JLG instructor, and Gerhard Hillebrand, then IPAF's Italy Representative. Undoubtedly, the thing that fascinated me is being able to teach, I have always liked passing on knowledge. Moreover, I am fascinated by aspects of safety; I love giving operators the tools to allow them to go home in the evening after working with MEWPs.
What do you find inspiring about your role? I really like the relationship that is created during the course; in many cases our professional skills and competence have been appreciated and even after the course is completed we are then taken as a point of reference in matters of safety (PPE or documentation, etc), from which the sale of new services often arise.
Where do you see yourself in five years, and what do you want to achieve? I still see myself here; in the coming months we will try to further develop training in the other Kilotou offices around Italy. So let's start with a new project, a new goal.
What one piece of advice would you give to other women in/thinking of entering the industry? The keystone is competence and knowledge: I wanted to learn everything about MEWPs. It's not a job that everyone can do, you must have a great desire to learn, to get your hands dirty and to be around people.