Retraining and training
Christina Seiller is trained to retrain as a refrigeration technician-air conditioning technician
After technical training, Christina Seiller started her new career as a refrigeration and air conditioning technician near Nantes. A successful reorientation into a profession that is often regarded as masculine. This reconvert champions the feminization of recruitment in the construction industry.
This former high-level cyclist has gone through the sports studies sector and has a penchant for challenge. And know how hard it is to stand out as a woman in a competitive context where feminization is progressing slowly. That’s why turn his career around is a challenge that gives her energy.
After a BTS in Customer Relations Negotiation and a bachelor’s degree in business development, Christina Seiller started in sales and consulting in a running store. When her daughter was born in 2016, the schedules proved too tight: until 8 pm and on Saturdays… She therefore registered with an employment agency and carried out various administrative assignments at AES Environnement, a specialist in heating and air conditioning, near Nantes.
Also read: Professional retraining attracts more and more French people
After a year she was hired on a permanent contract as a telephone operator at this company of 80 employees. In 2020, the young woman was assigned to the after-sales service and began to familiarize herself with the technical dimension of the sector: “ It is my manager, passionate about her profession, who has trained me to carry out the pre-diagnosis on telephone calls from breakdown customers or to make quotations.† especially for the maintenance of their installations. †
She enjoys the company where she knows everyone. She appreciates the mutual aid and the human touch. However, she longs to get out of the office. So she chooses a seven-month course offered by the National Agency for Vocational Training for Adults (Afpa), with a view to becoming a refrigeration installer-demolition: “ I first pointed out to the organization that the title was in masculine on the website! This is a promising profession because we lack qualified people in this field. I chose to take this course in order to progress and evolve faster afterwards. †
Train to retrain
She started this last July training, the cost of which is covered by financial support, especially those in the Pays de la Loire region. † I was the only woman in a class of ten. I barely knew how to hold a screwdriver when I arrived! With 35 hours a week with two fortnightly courses I have learned a lot and now I know, for example, how to assemble an electrical panel for a cold store. †
His first internship took place in a company specializing in refrigerated display cases for bakery pastries: ” We don’t realize it but there is cold all around us! I have often responded to emergencies and found it worthwhile to let someone else do their job by fixing a fault. †
Also read: Internal mobility: “You don’t have to change company to retrain!” †
For the second internship, she returned to AES Environnement, who reinstated her in the workforce once training was completed. But this time within the field teams, the air conditioning department: “ This area caught my eye! Indeed, I like to work with individuals, I feel close to them. And if you are in direct contact with them, soft skills are very important. My time in after-sales service gives me the advantage of managing customer relationships: I can bring psychology, empathy and finesse to the site. In addition to my new expertise. Without this technical training I would not have been entrusted with the same assignments and the development opportunities would have been less rapid. She recognizes that it is not easy to return, in adulthood, ” on the school benches ” to convert † It may seem scary, especially since it’s not easy to start from scratch from a professional point of view, to start over in a profession like I’m 18! But in reality, because practice and theory were intertwined, that wasn’t a problem for me. †
Feminizing the construction industry
It is also not obvious to towards a profession that is often regarded as masculine† I am not a Breton mover, I am 55 kg but I can practice this profession without any problems. I install air conditioning in homes, maintain and repair them. I work in pairs with a colleague. Being a woman in the field generates benevolence, not mistrust. I don’t encounter any drawbacks except that it would be necessary to feminize the construction sites! I think construction companies that have great difficulty recruiting should expand the pool to half of the French population. It’s a shame to deprive yourself of that! Turning to women gives yourself a 50% better chance of finding candidates. †
Christina Seiller would like to join an association to: help feminize the construction industry and fight clichés, as she has seen in sports competitions. † Having mixed teams only has advantages! † For her, all professions are adaptable, it is only a matter of organization, imagination and open-mindedness.
Find other testimonials of professional reorientation and many advices in the file ” Retraining: betting on training »published in the new issue of Rebondir magazine.