Concor Women Breaking Gender Stereotypes In Mining

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As we celebrate Women’s Month this August, we raise our hard hats to recognize and celebrate all Concor women and the exceptional work that they do daily. A special mention goes to our Concor women working at our opencast mining sites. A team of passionate and brave women are crushing stereotypes in a male dominated industry.

At the heart of one such site, are 13 dump truck operators who operate CAT 777 and Komatsu 785 dump trucks and track dozers, some of which stands at massive 90 tonnes.

Leboganga Mackson Manyathela is dwarfed by one of these gigantic machines she operates during a 10-hour shift, five days a week. “I love my job and the enormous work I am able to do with the Komatsu Dump Truck. These big machines have become a part of my life and I enjoy time alone during the shift. As I operate the 777 Dump Truck, either dumping rubbish or moving substances to where they are required, I get quality time to think about life and my future”.

Just like most of the operators on site, Lebo underwent an operator training programme and received on-the-job training before becoming a certified operator. 

“I encourage other women, especially young ladies to consider our field of work and not be intimidated by the size of the machines”, says Florence Matjiu, a dispatcher.

The women showed great love and passion for their work but like any other job or industry, they face many challenges daily.

  • Language barriers make it difficult for people from different ethnic groups to work together effectively. Broken communication and misunderstanding slow down productivity and can cause accidents.
  • Some men still doubt the abilities of women and think they are more experienced and better at operating large machines than women. “Sometimes they don’t trust our abilities, especially reversing the trucks,” says Lebogang Manyathela, a dispatcher. 

“We have no room for failure but room for the next attempt. We fight for success until we achieve it, then make it a habit. We are exceptional women and by obtaining competency in operating big machines such as the Komatsu 777 Dump Trucks and Track Dozers, we have made history at Concor. With power, strength, and patience – we overcame obstacles and we conquered. We are extraordinary women #BerekaMosadi”, a message from the group of Concor women.

“The strength of these women is incomparable, and they hold so much resilience. Organizations need to make time to appreciate women, to motivate and encourage the young ones to be resilient, to reaffirm them and support ongoing training and development” says Donique de Figueredo, Employee Engagement Manager at Concor.