- Please introduce yourself in a few lines:
Marie-Noëlle Tiné-Dyèvre, born in 1970,
- The holder of a Masters Degree in International Trade from Université Paris XII.
- Deputy Director of the French Maritime Cluster, since 2007
- Auditor of IHEDN’s 1st national meeting on Maritime Issues and Strategies in 2016.
- President of WISTA France, the network of maritime sector managers and executives, which has 4,000 women members in 54 countries, including 150 in mainland France and Guadeloupe.
- – Foreign trade advisor for France, coordinator of the Maritime Economy expert task force, which, in 2002, published a 2nd report entitled “Sustainable Maritime Economy: full steam ahead!“
- Lieutenant commander in the national navy reserves.
- Knight of the Order of Maritime Merit.
- What was the key turning point or most significant step in your career?
From the outset I’ve always enjoyed what I do. My first experiences enabled me to gain skills in sales, organisation and event management. The constant feature of my career has been promoting French companies sectors from varied range of sectors to international decision-makers.
The turning point was when I joined the maritime sector and started to specialise in it. In 2004, I was appointed as chief delegate for a professional association that was promoting French maritime safety technologies. I continued doing this as part of GICAN’s safety, security and environment committee in 2006. In 2007, I was excited by the French Maritime Cluster (CMF) venture, so I agreed to become deputy director of it. The CMF represents all sectors involved in the maritime economy, which means all economic activities related to the sea (transport, ports, fishing, shipping, cruise ships, water sports, renewable marine energies, etc.). It’s an exciting and stimulating area. I have enormous respect for sailors and people who work in the sea and related businesses, starting with port operators.
- What do you do on a day-to-day basis and what do you enjoy about being a woman in the maritime sector?
The main thing that has driven me since I took up my role is a wish to serve CMF members by meeting their needs as quickly and effectively as possible.
My average day is very varied. I run the administrative and financial side of the association and handle the administrative management of the CMF team, which has 7 members. With this team I also help run the 430-strong network (featuring companies of all sizes, federations and local authorities), which entails answering members’ inquiries, putting people in touch with each other, supporting them with the development of their projects, providing them with useful information for their businesses, fostering partnerships to promote them and boosting awareness of them at international level. It also involves arranging workshops on particular topics as well as meetings, conferences and trade shows, all of which are opportunities for people to get to know each other, pool knowledge and experiences, explain issues they face and look for and contribute solutions. The aims of all these actions are to stimulate sustainable maritime activity in France and meet the industry’s increasing number of national and global challenges.
- How would you describe what it is like to be a woman in a mainly male environment?
Even if it is still about 80% male, the maritime sector is good to work in. But it has not always been easy for me to deal with certain men who still have a very paternalistic view of the role of women in society. I had to fight to make my way, stand up for my ideas and push my plans forward, probably more than a man would have had to. I am persistent so I never gave up. These days I can see that leaders have changed, they are willing to entrust women with more and more responsibilities. More generally, however, women still need to make more headway in this sector. I help to give impetus to this process through the activities I lead as part of CMF’s “All aboard for Professional Equality” group and in my role as president of WISTA France. The maritime sector is growing strongly so it needs to attract more people to work in it: to meet demand, it is important to hire more women and make sure they are encouraged to stay. Furthermore, having mixed teams drives performance while achieving greater social balance.
- What advice would you give to any woman who wants to pursue a career in the maritime sector?
Dare to go for maritime jobs! Look and listen to women’s first-hand accounts through the “Elles de l’Océan” videos on the CMF’s site. You can also read the members’ portraits on the WISTA France site and the Instagram account of WISTA International, which has 4,000 women from 54 national associations. Maritime sector activities are thrilling, stimulating and diverse, and they help create values and intelligent reasoning. You can jump from one segment to another, from one company to another, from a port to a transport company or vice versa. So you can enjoy a wonderful career in the maritime sector, gaining both personal and professional satisfaction.