A Woman’s Touch
When Kim Dwyer was hired at Dayton, Ohio-based International Business Solutions Alliance, she was asked if she was prepared to handle "different personalities."
Dwyer, vice president of national account sales, who started with the company more than two years ago, learned quickly that every distributor has its own way.
"Some [distributors] have been in business for 30 or 40 years," she said. "The majority are men and they are used to dealing with men. So you have to adapt. You have to adapt to many different things. People from different geographical locations have different personalities. Distributors from New York have a different philosophy than those from the South. The way to succeed is to be patient and understanding. And I'm a big relationship-building person. Relationships are key."
Whether a salesperson, a vice president or a secretary, women say getting by in a male-dominated workforce, like the print industry, requires patience, persistence, intelligence, intuition and the ability to be a multi-tasker. Many women, not only in the print industry, are starting and running their own company, having taken on leadership roles and thriving in their careers.
And, the facts back it up. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, women comprised 46.8 percent of the total U.S. labor force and are projected to account for 46.9 percent of the labor force in 2018. The largest percentage of employed women (40 percent) worked in management, professional and related occupations; 32 percent worked in sales and office occupations; 21 percent in service occupations; 5 percent in production, transportation and material moving occupations; and 1 percent in natural resources, construction and maintenance occupations.
Here's something women can really be proud of: women accounted for 51 percent of all workers in the high-paying management, professional and related occupations, according to the labor statistics.