Sonepar Asks – International Women’s Day Spotlight: Lora Chisholm

International Women’s Day is an opportunity to celebrate the successes and strides that women have achieved in the workplace. We are highlighting our female associates in honor of their accomplishments and celebrating International Women’s Day. We have asked each associate about their career journeys and the opportunity to share their experiences and perspectives with Sonepar.

What position did you have when you started with the company and how did you progress into the position you have now?

In December 2018, I joined Texcan as a warehouse associate and worked as a lead hand when my manager left the company. Texcan recognized my continued determination, positive outlook, willingness to take on all types of work and promoted me to the warehouse manager position I currently hold as of May 2021. My career progression with Texcan from working as a warehouse associate to a manager was due to a growth mindset, self-starter, and staying humble through it all. As a manager, I strive to create a welcoming workplace and foster a positive mindset for everyone who comes into work. My people skills have played a key role as I am involved in operations across the warehouse.

Is there anyone that inspires you in your career?

As a young girl, my parents were my inspiration to carve my career in the trades as they both worked within the industry. Today, my mother continues to inspire me and encourages me with my career growth with 100% support. My mother was a sole provider for my family and seeing her put in a hard day’s work was inspiring to where I wanted to grow up to be just like her. I wanted to provide for my family and have a sense of security behind me.

What is the most important piece of advice you have been given that supported your career journey?

“Conquer your fears and follow your dreams” is the most important piece of advice I have received. I started my career in a male-dominated industry, and there are always fears about not being acknowledged due to gender-based biases. I took on every career opportunity with a positive mindset and was driven to showcase my capabilities within the industry by reminding myself I could do anything. I have proved many wrong that as a woman, I can hold my own and this has been empowering for me to continue to take on any task. It was vital for me to stay humble and continue growing as my contributions to the workplace spoke for me.

Why do you think diversity in the workplace is so important?

Diversity in the workplace is important because every individual brings something different. Everyone brings other thoughts and ideas, which is the beauty of it. It helps you critically examine problems or tasks on many diverse levels that enable you to understand the customer base from diverse backgrounds. Sonepar’s tagline, powered by difference, promotes the importance of diverse minds in our workplace and its success towards industry growth.  

What is the most important message you want to share with our female associates that are new hires and or also those in the company who have been thinking about growing their careers?

Conquer your fears, follow your dreams, and stay true to who you are. Don’t allow anyone to tell you you’re not worthy of doing a job or you’re not capable because you are. From my own experiences, I would like to share that putting in some hard work, determination and continuing to persevere, nothing will stop you from making it to where you want to be. That’s the best advice I think I can give someone. Remember to stay true to yourself, and only you know what’s right in your heart, so following that is important.

About Sonepar Canada:

Member of the Sonepar Group, we are Canada’s largest privately-held B-to-B electrical products distributor and supplier of safety, facilities maintenance and MRO (maintenance, repair, and operations) products and related services. In Canada, we are represented in nine provinces by Dixon Electric, Gescan, Lumen, MGM Electric, Sesco, Texcan and Vallen. Sonepar Canada has over 2000 employees working out of 114 offices between our distinctive brands.

This post is also available in: French