Diversity and inclusion are priorities for General Motors in Thailand and around the world. This was a message that Stefan Jacoby, GM executive vice president and president of GM International, shared with the company’s employees and dealers as well as media during his recent visit to Bangkok in the lead-up to International Women’s Day.
“Promoting diversity is not just about gender,” said Jacoby. “It is about valuing all ideas and building teams with different backgrounds and experiences. We are bringing the right skills and capabilities to our team, and putting the right people in place to help us transform the business and succeed over the long term.”
Approximately 37 percent of the leadership roles at GM Thailand, GM Global Propulsion Systems in Thailand and Chevrolet Sales Thailand are held by women. Women have high-profile positions in critical areas, from engineering and manufacturing at the company’s Rayong plant to franchise development and sales at its Bangkok office.
GM Thailand and Chevrolet Sales Thailand Managing Director Wail A. Farghaly pointed out that creativity is boosted when a company hires and develops a diverse range of people.
“Our current situation was not planned, but it comes from our focus on having the right talent in the right jobs,” said Farghaly. “This has been good for our company, as we see greater creativity and efficiency with more diversity and inclusion. This has also contributed to making GM a workplace of choice in Thailand.”
GM’s deep commitment to diversity is clear to its employees as well. GM Country Quality Lead Sakuna Thikhapanya noted, “There are many programs that provide women at GM the opportunity to develop their careers, so I can understand why there are so many female leaders.”
She added, “We have many women working in non-traditional female roles, especially in production. This speaks volumes for the work environment we have, where respect for others helps us all do a better job and deliver better vehicles to our customers in order to make Chevrolet a brand of choice in Thailand.”
Besides cultivating diversity and inclusion internally, GM also fully supports its business partners by helping them understand how diversity and inclusion strengthen everything from selling vehicles to achieving overall business success.
Paivan Srangtavorn, owner and dealer-operator of Pijitphet Motor Group – one of Chevrolet’s largest and longest-standing dealership networks in Thailand – noted that more than 60 percent of her dealer staff are women.