Historically, like many industries, the waste sector was a male dominated realm where females in senior positions were often hard to come by - how things have changed! Now there are more and more women finding a great fit for their skill base in the recycling and waste industry and here at Cawleys we are incredibly proud to have been addressing the gender balance for many years. In celebration of this we'd like to introduce you to our Women in Waste series where we get to know a few of our female team members in more detail.
This month we'd like start the series with our Commercial Support Team Leader Justyna Rurka. Justyna began here career at Cawleys in the MRF and has progressed up the job ladder to team leader in her time with us.
Q- Tell us a little about yourself?
A- My name is Justyna and I’m originally from Poland. I’m 33 years old and I’m a proud mum of two. I came to England in Feb 2011 looking for better opportunities for my kids. I’m very family orientated person and I’m always committed to whatever I do.
Q- Why you were interested in the waste sector?
A- I wasn’t solely interested in a waste sector; the opportunity was there for me to have my 1st full time job within the UK
Q- How has your role changed since you have joined Cawleys?
A- My 1st job at Cawleys was as a recycling operative. Even though that the job wasn’t the cleanest one, I liked the people I worked with on daily basis. Cawleys is a family run business, and you just feel like you are part of a furniture. It doesn’t matter if you are segregating the waste or have office-based position, people are always there to have your back, support and advise you.
Our team was mixture of different nationalities, but I was the only one that could understand English language, so I was promoted to be a control room operative where I was able to be around English people and practice my second language.
Back in 2016 I was promoted to Material Recycling Facilities Administrator. This role gave me opportunity to learn all different skills and get to know the waste industry more.
I’ve became a translator for Polish workers, I was always happy to know that people could rely on me if they needed any help. Year later I had opportunity to move up to Sales department and of course without a doubt I have accepted the offer. This role made me a chance to feel even more confident as I could learn more and more skills. In 2018 we merged our Sales Administration and Commercial Support into one and I became a Commercial Support Admin team member. This year I was promoted to Team leader for Commercial support and I have been given an opportunity to manage a team of 4.
Q- Has the Waste Sector provided you with opportunities you thought it would?
A- Working in waste sector has opened doors to endless opportunities. For me, entering Cawleys doors back in 2011 was the biggest step and the best decision I have ever made as people from the beginning had a trust in me and seen something I could never see, something I wasn’t aware I could be capable of.