While Ms. Trotta has worked with many women in the industry during her career, most of her coworkers over the years have been men. She said she doesn't feel she's experienced gender discrimination in her career, but that as a woman in a male-dominated industry she is motivated to “constantly be pushing for that next level.”
“I actually feel like, for me, I've always worked to be very proficient…. I always go to training; I always make sure I'm on top of my game. I've found myself to be really sought after in the industry.
“What you have to realize, too, in the industry is that when you're a woman in the industry you stand out,” she added. “I've always taken that really to heart and made sure that I was a great example of what a woman could do in the automotive industry.”
In many instances Ms. Trotta said she has found that being a woman is beneficial — especially from a customer service standpoint.
“As long as you know what you're doing, when people come in and they see a woman (in the shop) they're a little more disarmed and a little more likely to trust.... Women are nurturers, and sometimes people need their hand held when they're getting their car fixed,” she said.
According to Ms. Trotta, female customers especially are likely to relate better to a woman at the counter.
“For women, when cars break down, their lives break down,” she said. “They can't get their kids to soccer, they can't do all the things they need to do, so it becomes kind of a mini crisis. I think as a woman you're a little better at handling those types of crises and being a little more helpful in those kinds of situations.”
For Ms. Trotta, the biggest challenge as a woman in the industry has more to do with assumptions made about men in the industry.
“When (men) come into a situation, into a job, it is often assumed that they know what they're doing, and they're given that credibility,” she said. “I feel like in most situations I've entered I've had to earn it, but it kind of goes with life. Things that you're given you don't appreciate as well as things that you've earned, and I really appreciate this field.”