Sita Narayanan, Facilities and Sustainable Development Manager (GPMG)

Sita Narayanan, Facilities and Sustainable Development Manager (GPMG)

 

  • Please introduce yourself in a few lines.

 

I am Facilities and Sustainable Development Manager for Guadeloupe’s Grand Port Maritime. I am an earth sciences engineer and I joined the organisation in 2007. I took part in the extension works at Guadeloupe port in 2015 (New Generation Port) and led the studies on implementing environmental support measures for the project. I also devised the environmental programme for Guadeloupe’s Grand Port Maritime de la Guadeloupe, Cáyoli.

 

  • What do you do on a day-to-day basis and what do you enjoy about being a woman in the maritime sector?

 

No day is ever the same and that’s something I particularly relish. Often there is a big jump between working on the ground and more official meetings. I’m fortunate to have a skilled and highly motivated team, we always have fresh challenges to overcome. Being a woman has never held me back. On the contrary, it could be that I approach situations in a different, original way. I feel like I am respected and listened to when I work.

 

  • What has been the turning point or most significant step in your career?

 

I was fortunate to lead the environmental measures project for GPM Guadeloupe’s New Generation Port, which involved carrying out studies before the operational implementation. In particular, the Public Debate around the project was an opportunity for me to step into the light. The change of the port institution’s status added a legitimacy and a new dimension to the environmental actions that had already been carried out. But no doubt the turning post was when I agreed to become Facilities Manager in 2019 while continuing to serve as Environment Manager.

 

 

  • How would you describe what it is like to be a woman in a mainly male environment?

 

There are much more women than there used to be in major sea ports. The aptitudes and values that you need to work and thrive in this area are universal. Maybe there have been times when people have been surprised to see me but as soon as work begins, nothing else matters.

 

  • What advice would you give to any woman who wants to pursue a career in the maritime sector?

 

I can honestly say that I am convinced that skill and hard work always pay off. Often we are the first to put up barriers to ourselves. You shouldn’t be afraid to try, to dare, to seize opportunities. To succeed you have to work hard and put a lot of yourself into it. We have to keep on proving that being a woman is a professional asset.