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Celebrating Women Behind Our Excellence

At Havelock One Interiors, we onboard talented women from different backgrounds into dynamic roles. This International Women’s Day 2024, we have organised several initiatives under the theme ‘Inspiration’ as collective gestures to celebrate women’s achievements.

Read below what some of our team members have to say about leading and inspiring others:


Sara Mahdi

HSE Officer • Corporate – Health & Safety

As a woman and a chemical engineer by profession, I have navigated through a typically male-dominated field in various industries. I am here to share my experience and offer some tips to other women looking to grow in their careers.

Firstly, having an advanced mindset and belief in yourself is crucial. Only then can you be willing to give equal opportunities to both genders—when it comes to any job. At the start of my career, I had a young and passionate HSE manager who motivated me to take up this journey with safety and environment—being authentic and reflecting on who I truly am played a significant role in where my journey took me. I believe we are all different, and our differences make us ‘unique individuals’. It’s good to have a role model, but building your own model is even more exciting to me. I view diversity as fuel for creativity. Having a team with different backgrounds, whether it’s nationality, religion, gender, or experience, brings different views and ideas on any topic to the table. Optimising all these great ideas will result in the “best possible” decision. Here at Havelock One, the diversity is very noticeable, starting from our top management to the workers’ level, and that’s what makes us outstanding in the industry. Success indeed takes time to be created, and we often want things immediately, or else we give up. But it’s important to remember that everything is possible if you set your mind to it and invest time, money, and effort. I love the quote—”Where there’s a will, there’s a way!” The safety field can be challenging at times, given the type of activities we handle and the male-dominant nature of it. However, what helps me stay engaged is ‘Communication’. People often struggle with expressing themselves, their thoughts, or what makes them uncomfortable. I spent years practising public speaking and communication strategies, which was the wisest decision I have taken for my personal and professional life.

Finally, for those who like to pursue new heights, note that –courage has to come from within. Showing initiatives that indicate you are ready to be in a leadership role, followed by personal development (whether it’s skills or knowledge), is the perfect move. Always be willing to learn and grow, and never stop believing in yourself. The journey may be tough, but the rewards are worth it.


Kimberley Dean

Business Partnership Manager • Fit out – UAE

Since joining Havelock One just ten months ago, I have experienced an incredibly supportive environment that has not only welcomed me but also empowered me to make meaningful contributions to the business. From day one, I found myself actively engaged in core business initiatives and strategic discussions that will shape the Company’s future.

One standout example of this support was my inclusion in the Group Sales & Marketing Strategy Meetings held in September 2023. These sessions brought together executives and divisional directors to discuss the company’s sales and marketing strategies going forward. Being invited to participate in such high-level discussions so early in my tenure was both an honour and a testament to Havelock One’s commitment to embracing diverse voices in decision-making processes.

Moreover, I had the privilege of being nominated to represent the Group Sales Team as one of four members of the CRM committee. Tasked with selecting and implementing a top-tier CRM software solution, our committee’s work will be crucial in streamlining operations, enhancing sales efforts, and improving customer relationship management across the organisation. Serving on this committee allowed me to leverage my passion for business operations, sales, and marketing while contributing to a significant organisational initiative.

Maintaining a diverse and inclusive team means we bring together individuals with varied perspectives, experiences, and problem-solving approaches. Furthermore, it enables us to understand better and address the demographics and needs of our client base. Prioritising diversity and inclusion will not only enhance our company’s reputation and brand image but also help attract top talent and foster broader partnerships. To maintain a diverse team at Havelock One, we can continue to proactively identify and support potential female candidates, ensuring equal opportunities for skill development and career advancement. While the construction industry has traditionally been male-dominated, it’s imperative that we challenge perceptions and strive for gender balance where possible within our organisation. By nurturing a more inclusive workforce, we will naturally foster a more supportive environment for women.

As a woman in a senior position, I hope to inspire and encourage other women to pursue leadership roles. However, I acknowledge that being a female professional comes with its own set of challenges. My advice to aspiring women is to focus on building a solid foundation of knowledge, skills, and expertise, and to seize every opportunity for growth and development. Seek out mentors and allies who support your ambitions, and don’t be afraid to assert yourself.

I am thrilled to be part of this journey with Havelock One and look forward to continuing to encourage future female leadership within our organisation and beyond.


Afif Mahfoodh

Associate Legal Counsel • Corporate – Finance

Havelock One has supported my professional growth and development as a woman by providing mentoring, assigning me to a leading role, and offering training programmes tailored to address gender-specific encounters in the legal department.

Although I have faced challenges such as balancing work and family responsibilities and navigating a male-dominated environment, my determination and master’s in private law have helped me overcome these obstacles by cultivating resilience and focusing on delivering high-quality work to prove my capabilities and worth in the workplace. Every woman’s ambition is to have a more supportive and collaborative environment, to have affinity groups and organisations that initiate work-life balance, ensure equitable pay and advancement opportunities by actively listening to and addressing concerns related to gender equality in the workplace.

In my opinion, women can grow and pursue leadership positions if organisations implement initiatives such as leadership development workshops specifically tailored for women, promoting a culture of inclusivity and gender equality, actively identifying and nurturing female talent, and ensuring equal opportunities for career advancement.

My advice to aspiring female professionals is to believe in themselves, seek out mentors, build strong networks, continuously invest in learning and development, and advocate for themselves confidently in the workplace.




Aparna Das

Planner • Retail Manufacturing – Setting Out, Bahrain

I’m thrilled to be a part of the Havelock One team and wanted to take a moment to share my experience so far. As a relatively new joiner, I was a bit nervous about fitting into the team and managing the daily workflow. However, I’m delighted to say that my fears have been put to rest.

Firstly, the retail setting-out team greeted me with warmth and kindness from the moment I walked in. I felt like I was a part of the team in no time. My colleagues are always ready to lend a helping hand or provide guidance whenever I need it. I appreciate their willingness to share their knowledge and expertise, which has helped me settle down quickly. In particular, Havelock One has played a crucial role in my growth, both within my department and in terms of developing my communication skills with clients and other departments. The company culture here is one of positivity and inclusion. Everyone is encouraged to express themselves freely. I was truly honoured when Havelock One awarded me an Achievers Award for the projects accomplished.

As I reflect on my journey, I have come to realise the importance of having a role model to inspire and guide me. My sister has been a great example of success, balancing her architectural career with her family life and never compromising on either. Seeing her put in so much hard work has truly helped me grow and become a better professional.

Coming from a civil engineering background, I’m excited about the growth and development opportunities available here. The company has provided us with ample resources to learn and expand our knowledge through the Taqadam online learning programme, and I’m looking forward to taking advantage of them.

Every individual has their own unique set of skills and talents, and it is essential that everyone is given equal opportunities to showcase them. My humble suggestion is to maintain a positive outlook and stay happy. Good things will come your way when you stay positive and believe in yourself.


Riyah Gravador

Interior Designer • Fit out – Qatar

As an interior designer working at Havelock One for the last five years, I have been fortunate enough to witness the company’s genuine commitment to supporting women in the workplace. Havelock One has always been dedicated to providing equal opportunities for women and cultivating an inclusive environment where our voices are heard. As a woman, I have personally benefited from Havelock One’s support, which has helped me to advance my career and achieve my professional goals. I have been given access to various opportunities that allowed me to grow and learn, attend tailored seminars and programs that address the unique challenges women face in our industry, and work in an inclusive and supportive environment.

I owe my career to Fr. Elmer Ignacio, the parish priest in our community. He believed in my potential even during the very initial days of starting my profession. He invited me to join their project team, which opened many doors for invaluable professional experiences and opportunities. His guidance, wisdom, and unwavering support helped me navigate challenges and inspired me to aim higher and strive for excellence in my career and personal journey.

To my fellow aspiring female professionals, I encourage you to trust in your abilities, bounce back from setbacks, seek mentors and good role models, keep learning and growing, and never hesitate to seize opportunities to showcase your unique talents and potential. Fortunately, Havelock One is already taking significant steps towards empowerment and driving an inclusive mindset through various programmes like professional development training and women-specific workshops where our women thrive. I believe that by tailoring more leadership programmes, with the help of visible role models and mentors, prioritising equal opportunities for advancement, and listening to women’s feedback, we can further enhance our supportive environment, ensuring every woman reaches her full potential.


Nusaybah Asiri

Front Desk Officer • Corporate – Administration – KSA

As a front desk staff at Havelock One, I feel proud to be a part of a company that truly values and supports its female employees. The company’s code of conduct and ethics provide a safe and supportive environment for women to grow and excel in their respective fields. In my experience, an inclusive culture that embraces our varied experiences, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, itself emphasises the professionalism of a work environment. Havelock One has done an excellent job in this regard. The company has a well-defined set of policies enforced across all departments to ensure that the workplace is free from harassment or discrimination.

For aspiring female professionals looking to excel in their careers, my advice would be to continuously learn and take on new and challenging tasks. It’s important to step outside your comfort zone and push yourself to achieve your goals. Since being the first hired female staff in Havelock One’s KSA branch back in 2021; I had the feeling that the other male staff members seemed unsure of how to interact with a female staff in a way that would stay respectful and not cross any boundaries. However, being aware of the code of ethics enforced by the cooperate policies has helped my colleagues recognise and respect boundaries and act accordingly during the various interactions.

To foster a more supportive and collaborative environment for women, the right first step is promoting women’s rights in the workplace and providing a safe environment for expressing their needs. Encourage women to take on newer roles by providing opportunities for professional development and training. I am proud to be a part of the Havelock One family that truly cares about its employees and encourages them to grow and develop on a personal and professional level.



About Havelock One’s Initiatives for Women
My female friend

At Havelock One, we have a dedicated programme for our women staff called “Sadeeqati,” which means “my female friend.” This initiative is aimed at focusing on the development and well-being of women employees and includes outings, webinars, and workshop activities.

To empower the women in our workforce, we have arranged several internal campaigns for the year 2024. This includes honouring women with online profile badges such as Warrior Spirit, Insightful Mentor, Women of Steel, etc… Additionally, we have launched a dedicated platform called “Creative Women’s Hub,” where female employees can showcase their talents and share inspirational hobby stories. In a move to foster a culture of inclusivity, we have also invited our staff to share their thoughts, ideas, and stories of inspiring women who have impacted their lives.



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