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Shelley Bencz

Shelley Bencz – Not Just a Man’s Role

In honour of celebrating women in the workplace this March 8th on International Women’s Day, we take a quick look at one of the women who work at Mustang Freightways in “non-traditional” female roles. As active employers of women workers in all aspects of our operations, we are proud to showcase Shelley Bencz, our forklift operator at our Edmonton/Acheson Freight Service Center.

Some Patience & Precision

Now you might think that a forklift operator’s job is pretty straightforward, but there are two key traits that one must have to successfully perform their duties. “Patience and precision are two key characteristics important to my job as a forklift operator in our Mustang  warehouse,” Shelley is quick to state. “I load and unload trailers which are going in and out of our warehouse through all hours of the day, and I’m most often using a forklift to get the job done.”

Smashing Stereotypes

When asked about her thoughts on the position being traditionally occupied by males, Shelley says, “Despite being in a male-dominated industry, I feel I have conquered those stereotypes by taking pride in what I do and have gained the trust of my coworkers through hard work and talent.” She adds, “Working for Mustang for one and a half years has been a rewarding and great experience for me. I love the way I’m treated here.”

Shelley on forklift

Seizing Opportunities

Shelley hasn’t always been a forklift operator. “I actually worked as a waitress for years,” says Shelley when asked about her previous careers. “It took one person to get me into this field and I’m thankful for taking the opportunity. Initially, there was some pushback, but I pushed even harder to fight for my place in this line of work. Now, I’m happy – – I’m like one of the guys,” she laughs.

Solid Advice

Shelley’s words of advice to other women looking to enter non-traditional roles usually occupied by men? “Don’t be scared to fight for what you want! You should always work to be happy, and not just because you have to.”

Some Solitude

For personal time, Shelley likes to keep things in low gear. “I enjoy a life of solitude, peace, and drama-free existence; I prefer doing my things on my own and like having my own space.” She does outdoor activities like hiking, but she’s not much of an airline traveller. “I find the concept of airplanes claustrophobic. It’s not my thing.” Shelley also likes to read and hang out with her cat, Boo Boo.