Carol Lloyd - Branch Manager – Pipes & Fittings and Excom Member
Your career journey – where did you start, how did you decide to work in this industry?
I initially accepted a part time opportunity to do bookkeeping for a steel pipe fabricator over 30 years ago, which became a permanent position and the start of my career in fluid conveying systems.
What’s your biggest accomplishment in the industry?
I set myself many goals, including one to achieve the recognition for my strategic ability.
This moment of recognition was when I was appointed to Excom (the senior management committee) of the Stewarts & Lloyds Group shortly after joining the company in June 2021. This forum provides me the opportunity to add value to strategic discussions and decision making.
What’s your favourite thing about working in this sector?
The fluid conveyance product is complex and fascinating as it covers numerous industry sectors, namely water, mining, petrochemical, agricultural, pulp & paper, power generation, manufacturing and others. Piping systems are varied and dependant on industry and purpose, which can be regionally or even seasonally differentiated.
We are in dynamic times and under-standing the market shifts, local and international impacts, supply and demand, makes it exciting to research, adapt and align product approaches constantly.
Michelle Toy - Regional Manager - Wynberg, Robertville & Pumps branches
What did you study to get to where you are?
I studied Financial Management through Unisa part time. After completing my studies, I enrolled in the different programmes the company offered, such as pipeline management workshops, leadership programmes, sales development courses, and various computer literacy programmes.
How did you rise through the ranks to get to where you are?
I started my career as the receptionist at Stewarts & Lloyds Robertville. From there I was given the opportunity to grow within the branch. The positions that I filled over the past 18 years have been Buyer, Counter Sales, Internal Sales, Internal Sales Manager, Sales Manager, Branch Manager and now recently Regional Manager.
What is your biggest accomplishment in the industry?
My biggest accomplishment in the industry would be that no matter what happened or what challenges came my way, I faced them, pushed past them, learnt from them, and stay focused on my goals, vision and purpose.
What’s your advice for other women and young people wanting to succeed in the industry?
No matter where you start, just start. Work hard, be consistent, be willing to learn and absorb as much as you can as you grow.
Surround yourself with people who share your drive, passion, and enthusiasm for and in this industry. Learn from everyone, take as much knowledge as you can from them.
Be willing to make mistakes and be open to opportunities.
Belinda Malan - Branch Manager - Vaal
What kind of academic qualifications do you have?
I studied Personnel Management at the Vaal University of Technology and did various product knowledge and basic management courses.
How did you decide to work in the engineering industry?
My personality and the people skills I was taught, naturally lead me in a sales direction. I started my career as a personal assistant for an engineering firm while I studied part-time and was soon offered a position in sales. I believe that people who hold jobs with characteristics and tasks related to their personality are more productive, happier and more successful.
What is your favourite thing about working in this sector?
It is never the same, it is always exciting and challenging and, being a woman, I feel we bring a different voice and attention to detail that is needed to help make this industry even greater.
What advice would you like to give younger women who want to succeed in the workplace?
Focus on what you want out of your career, set realistic goals for yourself, and keep your eyes on the result and not the clock. Take the opportunities given to you and embrace them with confidence. As you grow and climb the career ladder, build a strong team and make sure you place the correct people in the right positions.