nities available in logistics, pointing to the growing role
technology is playing in the industry and the resulting need
for talented scientists, engineers, and digital marketers, to
name a few.
Carere’s logistics career has taken her around the world,
and technology has played a key role in it as well. Those
forces came together earlier this year, landing her on “The
Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” to introduce FedEx’s
SameDay Bot, a driverless delivery vehicle that can travel
along sidewalks to deliver packages to the consumer’s front
door. FedEx will be testing the bot in select markets this
summer; the firm’s hometown of Memphis is one of them.
Carere recently spoke to DC VELOCITY Senior Editor
Victoria Kickham, sharing her insights on the importance
of attracting more women to careers in logistics.
Q Why should women be interested in the logistics field? What does it have
AGlobal transportation and logistics is a $550 billion market—and our
industry is growing and changing at
an exhilarating pace. As our industry
expands, so do the number of opportunities for women to have a dynamic
and rewarding career. And I’m not just
talking about the hugely important role
our female pilots and drivers play; this
industry calls for data scientists, engineers, digital marketers, training specialists, and more—meaning there’s room
for just about every interest and skill set.
Despite this reality, we still have a significant opportunity to sell our industry
to women. Here’s what I’m talking about: A few years ago,
during my time at FedEx Canada, we commissioned a study
that asked roughly 1,000 Canadian women about a career
in management in a transportation company. We learned
that only 11 percent would consider a leadership position
in the industry—and over half of the group stated outright
that transportation was not for them and they would never
think of it as a viable career option. We asked what their
impressions of the transportation industry were, and 59
percent said they didn’t know much about it. Looking at my
own incredible experience at FedEx, those statistics really
blew my mind!
In order to effect change, we have to share our experi-
ences with those who could benefit from our insights. We
must passionately convey the opportunities that careers in
our industry provide. For me, the ability to help connect
the world in ways that enable a brighter future is truly
gratifying, as is the ability to interact with so many different
teams—and even other businesses—all across the world.
Q What is FedEx doing differently from other companies to promote women executives?
AAt FedEx, we are passionate about mentoring women at every stage of their careers. We have an active
Women in Leadership community, and I’m delighted to be
involved. As part of that, senior officers, myself included,
often facilitate candid discussions where we can share our
own experiences—and mistakes!—with the goal of help-
ing other women further their careers. I’ve had so many
tremendous female role models during my 17 years at the
company, and I’m glad to be able to share my insights.
Externally, FedEx actively supports organizations like
the International Aviation Womens
Association (IAWA) and Women in
Aviation International (WAI), both [of
which] highlight the role of women in
the traditionally male-dominated fields
of logistics and aviation. In fact, we are
very proud that our own Bobbi Wells,
vice president of safety and airworthiness
at FedEx Express, is the current IAWA
QLooking beyond the C-suite, what can companies do to attract more
women to the industry in general?
ATo attract more women to the logis- tics industry, it’s important that
we continue to build awareness of the
types of careers that are available and let
women know that we value their interests and talents. Many
of our FedEx women visit high schools and colleges, speak
to women’s organizations, and share their insights during
summits regarding careers in logistics and transportation.
We also have tuition programs designed to encourage
female students to pursue careers in aviation, and, as I men-
tioned, we are strong supporters of [IAWA] and [WAI].
As a company that delivers more than 15 million packages daily to customers in more than 220 countries and territories, we know that talent is our most valuable resource
and [that] great ideas come from diverse team members
throughout our organization.
QTechnology continues to change the transportation and logistics landscape. How does this affect the industry’s
ability to attract talent?