From writers to doctors, lawyers to firefighters, women have always prided themselves in being able to prove we can do anything when it comes to working and raising our families.
I love strong female role models. It’s all the incredible fields women are now working in and how much we can learn from one another, which is why I decided to do a spotlight series featuring different women working in different fields and areas of expertise.
My hope is for all of us to gain some perspective, maybe even learn a little bit from one another, and to show the next generation of strong women coming into the workforce that you can do anything you want to do if you just put your mind to it.
Women in the Auto Industry
When we think of the automobile industry and those responsible for shaping not only the vehicles we drive but how we drive them, we often think of names such as Henry Ford and Nikola Tesla. But men weren’t the only ones responsible for driving the auto industry forward.
Many women played key roles in helping with the creation and growth of the automobile industry. These women were responsible for creating some of the most important safety features used on our vehicles. Without them we probably wouldn’t have the vehicles we drive today.
Bertha Benz – husband of Karl Benz is responsible for the creation of the first motorized vehicle. She was the true mastermind behind the car’s history. Bertha not only funded the project with her own money, unable to patent the idea due to the laws, but she was also the key influencer in bringing the idea to life by her son’s, Bertha would sneak out behind her husband’s back and take long journey’s with the vehicle, acting as both driver and mechanic.
Bertha was also responsible for taking wooden brake pads and adding rubber to them to create what is use today to stop our vehicles when it’s important.
Mary Anderson might be responsible for the creation of the windshield wiper but Charlotte Brigwood – Mother of Florence Lawrence was the first woman to upgrade the idea by creating the first electronically operated automatic wipers in 1917. Her patent expired in 1920 and Cadillac picked up the slack leading the way to one of the most important safety features known in our vehicles to date.
Florence Lawrence – Actress and car enthusiast born in 1886. Lawrence, daughter of Charlotte Brigwood was the first person to develop what we now call the “turn signal” By using flags on either side of her car, she could remotely lift them to signal that she was turning a certain direction. This had never been seen before.
The turn signal has become one of the most crucial mechanisms used in our vehicles today. Although Lawrence never patented her idea, she is still given credit for the idea and for having played such an important role in shaping not only how we drive but keeping us safe while we do it.
Women in the Auto Industry Today
With so many women paving the way before us, I decided to track down a woman in the auto industry today to see how things have changed. Tiffany Watson is such a woman, shown bottom left sitting at the desk while celebrating her birthday with her car family.
Tiffany has helped so many people with their car needs. I asked her 10 questions about her job and life working in the industry.
Q1. What Part of the Auto Industry Do You Work in?
Tiffany – I work in the auto sales industry. My job is to help my clients find their first or next vehicle, maybe help build their credit and make the process less stressful.
Q2. Are you full or part-time?
Tiffany – I
Q3. Are you a single or working mother?
Q4. What motivates you?
Tiffany –My kids are my biggest motivation. I show them that if you work hard and put in the time good things follow.
Q5. What do you like the most about your job?
Tiffany – I love helping my customer’s with their vehicle search and help them get into a safe and reliable vehicle for them and their family.
Q6. Do you find it difficult being a woman and working in your field and why?
Tiffany – It can be tough. Some of the customer’s look at me and see a woman and think I don’t know anything about the product and they don’t respect me.
Q7. Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Tiffany – Other women in the business give me strength to be successful in this business.
Q8. Use 3 words to describe yourself
Tiffany – Honest, Patient and friendly
Q9. Where do you live?
Tiffany – I lived most of my life on the Sunshine Coast so I am a small town girl. I now live in Langley.
Q10. What advice do you have for other women working in your field?
Tiffany – Don’t get caught up in what people say around you. Work hard and know your product and always remember why you got in the business.
Tiffany is great at her job. Her hope is to connect with other woman in the industry and to be an inspiration for them. Without strong women like Tiffany, the auto industry wouldn’t be what is is today.
- Bertha Benz – First Motorized Vehicle
- Florence Lawrence – The Turn Signal
- Charlotte Bridgwood – Development of Windshield Wiper
- Tiffany Watson – GoDodgeSurrey