“So, your a woman ? that’s not what I was expecting.” Normally most people during their work week would consider a comment like this sexist or derogatory, but in the last 15 or so years I have taken this sentence and embraced it.
If you take a minute to think about it, it is pretty unusual to have a woman running your local motorcycle workshop. In an ideal world perhaps it wouldn’t or shouldn’t be unusual but this is not an ideal world, its the real world.
The thing I love about being a woman in this industry is the respect I have gained from my peers but mostly from my customers, 95 percent of which are male. My customers know that my knowledge of my industry and of the motorcycles I work on has had to be that tiny bit better then my co workers. I struggled for may years to be taken seriously, often only given admin positions in motorcycle related businesses when all I wanted to do was be allowed to pick up a spanner and make motorcycles work.
However, in all honesty I know that I do not know everything and, every day is a new learning experience both mechanically and in business. Also, I owe much of my knowledge to my co worker and friend Garry, who has built Zenith Motorcycles from the ground up with me.