Empowering Central Asian Women in Renewables - Ayleen's Story

In this video, we speak to Ayleen Sadvakassova, Business Development Manager - Power & Renewable Energy – North Asia, about her experiences in ...

In this video, we speak to Ayleen Sadvakassova, Business Development Manager - Power & Renewable Energy – North Asia, about her experiences in completing the Empowering Central Asian Women in Renewable Energy Mentoring Program, organised by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe in partnership with the Global Women’s Network for the Energy Transition.

Ayleen volunteered to participate in this critical program to support other women in Asia in entering and thriving in the renewable energy transition, affecting the whole industry. We discussed why she chose to enter the mentoring program, what it means to her professionally and personally, and the benefits the program brings to the broader industry in Asia.



My name is Ayleen, and I am in Business Development North Asia – Renewable Energy and Power in NES Fircroft. I am originally from Kazakhstan, and my passion for recruitment allowed me to live & work in Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore and Taiwan for the last 14 years. I am a wife and mom and passionate about Renewable Energy and Sustainability. As a Business Development Professional, I am proud to contribute to the operation of my clients committed to facilitating global change in North Asia by creating tailored personnel solutions without borders and providing support to attract, engage and retain values-driven talent.


Why did you get involved in the program? What does it mean to you?

I was a part of the mentorship program Empowering Central Asian Women in Renewable Energy, where I became a mentor for a woman from my country Kazakhstan while I was living in Singapore. It was my first experience acting as a Mentor. While focusing on the mentee’s development goals, you reflect on and re-evaluate your story, values, and expertise.  It is a fantastic opportunity to get along with other women and inspire each other to become the best version of ourselves.


What were the main topics of the mentoring sessions? 

We covered trends in Renewable Energy Industry, new technologies, how to create a healthy work-life balance, pursue international career dreams and motherhood. As well as how to build healthy boundaries when you come from a very traditional culture.


Why do you think this program is essential for the industry?

Mentoring can help elevate more women into critical leadership roles and transform the business and how we work, live, and connect.  It’s very beneficial to have diversity in crucial decision-making. Sustainability and protecting the environment are vital to everyone, so everyone should have a “seat at the table”.


Why is it essential to support Central Asian Women in Renewable Energy?

Central Asia is a bridge between Eastern and Western countries, making contributions to the world’s sustainable energy solutions imperative. Unfortunately, some areas of Asia still struggle with equal rights, and gender stereotypes hinder women’s ability to pursue a career. At the same time, the potential for Renewable Energy is massive in the region, and talented Central Asian women can make a fantastic contribution to the global energy transition.


Why is it essential to support the energy transition? 

Energy transition affects every side of the market – from oil and gas and downstream companies endeavouring to lower their carbon emissions to offshore wind, pioneering hydrogen projects, and more. The world’s population is growing, and the energy demand is soaring. The key is for the industry to work in harmony, collaborate, and share knowledge to deliver energy security for the world.


How does NES Fircroft give opportunities to females? 

NES Fircroft has a unique program to support diversity and inclusion, initiatives specially designed to attract females into managerial roles. I find it liberating the trust-based communication we have internally.
On a personal level, when I received the job offer last year, I discovered I was pregnant with my second child. Despite my circumstances, I had open communication with the hiring manager and was surprised that NES Fircroft was still open to hiring me. This and other conditions, like extended maternity leave and flexible working hours arrangements, made me accept the offer. It was a big decision for me to take on a regional role and relocate to Taiwan with my growing family. It required a lot of mutual trust. 
I believe that hiring mothers and mothers-to-be in Renewable Energy brings a different perspective and gives energy transition and sustainability a vital importance. It allows mothers to contribute to providing their children with a better future.