Insights: Jazmin Morby, Design Engineer at Dymag
In celebration of International Women’s Day, we’re speaking with women across our portfolio to hear their career insights. Jazmin Morby, Design Engineer at performance wheel manufacturer, Dymag discussed what drew her to automotive engineering and advice for women to accelerate their careers.
1. What do you see as the challenges facing today’s business leaders and do you think there are any additional or different ones for females?
I think that one of the most difficult things leaders have to do is create and maintain a work culture where all personality types can thrive. Across industries, in decision-making meetings an informed woman’s voice can too often be drowned out by the overt confidence of male colleagues. Failing to make space for everyone’s views can lead to a sub-optimal decision-making process.
My own experience has been largely positive but I have noticed women in leadership roles being judged on different criteria to their male counterparts. For instance, during university projects I noticed male leaders were praised for their assertiveness, whereas women in the same role were criticised for being bossy. Attitudes like this are slowly being recognised and worked on, but we have a way to go.
2. How did you get into your career?
I grew up surrounded by 80’s and 90’s Japanese sports bikes – which instilled a huge passion for this era of motorcycle engineering and no small amount of fury at the space efficiency of their design (ever tried lifting the battery out of a ZXR400?). These bikes were designed to last and even now, some 30 years later, my early 90’s 400cc Kawasaki can, with a good rider, still do pretty well on a track day.
So, inspired and annoyed, I studied to become an automotive engineer. When it came to choosing my internship at university, Dymag stood out as a British brand with a long history in the automotive industry.
3. What words of advice would you give to women looking to accelerate their careers today – what are the three things you wish you’d known?
I would say:
- Don’t let anybody else dictate the pace of your career.
- Also take any and all training opportunities that come your way – and if they don’t come your way, seek them out.
4. What does a typical day look like for you – or is every day different? If you could have an extra hour in the day what would you spend it on?
I work on the motorcycle side of Dymag so a typical day is spent on the computer designing wheels in CAD and talking to customers. I’m fortunate enough to work in a company with engineering and production teams under one roof, so I get to spend time on the shop floor learning about the processes involved. I also spend time where I can out of the office measuring wheels on new bikes and talking to the dealers.
I’d spend an extra hour on reviewing the ‘lessons learned’ from the day. The industry I work in can feel quite fast paced and there doesn’t always seem to be the time to reflect on the last day before the next one is here.
5. Who do you most admire in business and why?
I also admire people who are able and unafraid to look at problems from a new perspective. In particular:
- Abraham Wald and his survivorship bias work on armouring planes during WW2;
- Po-Shen Loh, a mathematician who proposed a different approach to contact tracing apps using game theory; and
- Admiral Grace Hopper who, in her MIT lecture, stresses the value of communication and the importance of challenging preconceptions (see the counter-clockwise clock).
All of these people have lectured at some point. I admire leaders who see the importance of teaching and mentorship within their business.
6. Where do you see your business or division in five years’ time?
We have lots of exciting R&D projects in the pipeline, so it will be great to see those coming to fruition and helping to move Dymag from strength to strength. We have also completed projects for a number of smaller motorcycle manufacturers recently, so it would be great to come up with a new design for a big OEM such as Kawasaki, or see our wheels on a production electric motorcycle.
7. If you could wave a magic wand and change one thing about your business, what would it be?
I’ll jump on the universal bandwagon and say meetings and meeting culture. It’s never easy to get right – especially with the face-to-face element of meetings being all but eliminated over the past few years – but in our often-digital environment I’d emphasise the importance of creating a forum that enables everyone the time and space to communicate their thoughts.