As a values-driven organisation, IKEA is committed to reaching complete gender equality across its global business by 2020. At IKEA Bristol, the store has already achieved an equal proportion of male (49.5%) and female (50.5%) co-workers.
Louise comments: “When I had my first son, I was concerned that being a new mum would limit my career opportunities. However, once I returned from maternity leave, I was able to continue in the same role on a part-time basis.
Louise felt assured that she could continue to grow her family while working at IKEA. She went on maternity leave again in 2010 and returned to the same part-time role. After taking time off work to look after her two children, Louise was eager to focus on advancing her development opportunities at IKEA. She began to re-examine processes in her department based on IKEA’s core values of simplicity and togetherness.
“Focusing on this concept fuelled my passion for co-worker development, talent and succession. After discussing my personal development with my manager, I became a trainer for Checkout Managers across the whole of the UK, while also supporting on store projects,” said Louise.
Louise was offered the position and started her training programme at IKEA Bristol in September 2016. She said: “It was an incredible feeling to know that my manager believed in my ability as a leader. His support and encouragement enabled me to unleash my potential and find confidence to believe in myself.
“This International Women’s Day, I am forever grateful to IKEA for the opportunities that I’ve been offered, both in my professional and personal life, and I look forward to a bright future of becoming a Store Manager.”