Compliance Manager, Gefco Forwarding Netherlands B.V.: Sarina Walidin

Sarina has been working in logistics and freight forwarding for more than a decade, and has spent almost her entire working life in the industry. She enjoys the high level of variety and challenges within pharma logistics, and has been instrumental in establishing the IATA CEIV certification for Gefco and key person in developing Generic Audits within Pharma Gateway Amsterdam (PGA).

How important is collaboration in your professional life?

In my view, collaboration stands for networking and finding new ways to involve people in your way of working. In a company, and in professional business, collaboration is essential. People cannot work in silos. Therefore, it is important to create a bond between people and ensure they are connected to your network.

How often do you collaborate with others?

In our business collaboration is essential. Collaborating is taking place every day with employees in our warehouse, office, management teams, headquarters and international network, and it is the core activity of what we do within a freight forwarding business. Collaboration is the only way to improve your company processes and achieve common goals.

How do you manage collaborative relationships in business?

The key word in managing collaborative relationships is ‘trust’. Trust is to have confidence or faith in someone that is based on an expectation that they will act in certain ways to align with a mutually shared interest, rather than be self-interested in a way that does not take account of the expectations, needs, and desires of others. To trust is to have confidence in how one will be dealt with by the other. Once you have built that trust, it becomes easy to maintain collaborative relationships in business.

Do female leaders collaborate in a different way to male leaders? If so, how and why?

I do think there is a difference in approach between female and male leaders. Female leaders take into account emotions when collaborating and try to understand the other person. They encourage and support their collaborating partner in the best way possible. Male leaders are often direct and straightforward, and are quicker in taking decisions and solving problems ‘on the spot’.

Is there more ‘goodwill factor’ within women in business? If so, why do you think that is?

In general, I would say yes. Most women will support other women to achieve their goals because they have an understanding of their emotions and want to empower other women in business. However, I must admit, there will always be exceptions, as not all women are the same and some women lack the goodwill factor.

What is your approach to stakeholder management?

Stakeholders can be found at different levels, such as internal stakeholders and external stakeholders. It is important to engage all your stakeholders and ensure that you are aware of the influence of that particular stakeholder. Internal stakeholders are employees, which are key to your business and, therefore, collaboration is key. External stakeholders can be regulatory instances, alliances, and customers. One of these alliances is Pharma Gateway Amsterdam and this is a clear example of collaboration, where we engage different stakeholders at the airport and work towards a common vision and goal together.

How does collaboration assist in stakeholder management?

Collaboration is key for stakeholder management and the only way to engage your stakeholder is by collaborating and ensuring stakeholders are aware of your company goals.

Do you have any additional comments?

“No one can whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it.” H.E. Luccock