Julie Lee, Head of Soft Services, Khansaheb Facilities Management
Having always wanting to work with people, Julie Lee, Head of Soft Services, Khansaheb Facilities Management always had a passion for the quality & customer service field. It was only when she started her career as a housekeeper in one of the oldest 5-star hotels in the UAE where her passion for Soft Services developed and grew. Today it has been 17 years and Julie states that her love for the industry is only growing.
“I have been lucky to have mentors in my path and I make it a point to pass on anything I learn to my subordinates as well so that we can all grow together. When I look back at my time here in the region, I see how my subordinates have now become supervisors and managers, and this fills me with pride. There is a saying, ‘Be proud that you are a teacher, for the future lies with you’. This sentiment drives me to motivate my team to aim better and continue persevering and learning."
Barriers in Female Leadership
“This is just based on my experiences, and I do not want to sound biased, but I feel that female leadership is generally misinterpreted as being driven by emotions, equivalent to a storm - changing and shifting direction unpredictably. Gender equality begins with cultural and social acceptance which we all collectively need to work towards."
Speaking about Facilities Management (FM), the representation of women in this industry has been relatively low. However, I think the situation is rapidly evolving. To make their mark in FM, women need to be mentally and emotionally strong to be able to play the many roles they have in their personal and professional lives, with grace. More often than none, we create our superficial barriers.
“Keep the faith. Persevere and maintain consistency. We are lucky to be living in this part of the world where we are presented with equal opportunities, for both men and women and it is how you make the most of it that counts. At the end of the day, I think it comes down to this - success is not about you, it is about the people you work with and your contribution towards their success. That is the true mark of a Leader, for me."