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Ivon Dethan: I can, before I am… a woman

In celebration of International Women’s Day, we are pleased to bring you the story of Ivon Dethan, one of our leaders at DB Schenker. As Chief Commercial Officer for DB Schenker Indonesia, Ivon’s responsibility is to build commercial infrastructure, strategy, revenue growth, market share, as well as to lead and support all developments related to sales and marketing. Having started her career more than 20 years ago and after having spent six years in the freight-forwarding industry, Ivon has had her fair share of experiences as a woman in an industry that is primarily male-dominated. Since then, she has moved up several roles from Area Manager, Trade Management, Sales Director, and now into Chief Commercial Officer.
During peak seasons, Ivon still makes time to release her creativity through painting. She loves to paint, especially on weekends. She has also participated in several painting exhibitions where her artworks have been displayed. Painting is how she chooses to explore and express herself, while being productive in some way other than work. “For me, painting somehow balances my life and my work. As a woman, there are times when we must wear many ‘heels’; as a boss, as a friend, as a mother, as a colleague, and many more. By pursuing a hobby that we love, we can escape for a while from those ‘heels’,” says Ivon. She hopes the same thing for women all around the world.

Paintings by Ivon Dethan, Chief Commercial Officer for DB Schenker Indonesia

She explains, “I never focus on the gender. Just focus on your capability, what you can contribute, and go for it. When you succeed, people will not care whether you are a woman or not.”

In her three years with DB Schenker, Ivon observes that slowly but surely, we are transitioning to a more diverse and merit-based work culture which has in many ways disproved certain gender stereotypes about women, but that doesn’t mean we should stop here. She believes DB Schenker provides opportunities for all regardless of gender, and this is evident from the fact that increasingly, more women have been appointed to various leadership positions within the company.

Since the very beginning, Ivon has never seen gender as a handicap in her career.
“In my journey, indeed I cannot be naïve to say that it was without some prejudice or even at times, condescension, but since I never saw myself as a victim in those situations, I didn’t let them stop me from achieving my goals in life. The phrase ‘Even though I am a woman, I can’ does not work for me. I think vice versa: ‘I can, before I am a woman’,” says Ivon. “Don’t wait until the opportunities come, initiate one.”

The way she defines herself has brought Ivon to her position today, to answer the challenges that come from leading Ocean Freight and subsequently into leading Commercial to bring revenue for the company.

 “Love and appreciate yourself. Be bold and beautiful, and flaunt it,” she concludes, with a look of pride.

#DBSchenker #InternationalWomensDay #BalanceforBetter #IWD2019