'They ignore me and turn to my husband': British Citroen boss, 58, 'has faced sexism in showrooms and sales staff ignore her' when she goes mystery shopping

Mail Online | 9/13/2017 | James Coney;Ray Massey for the Daily Mail
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As the most powerful woman in the motor industry, Citroen boss Linda Jackson knows a thing or two about cars.

But that doesn't mean she doesn't get talked down and patronised by male forecourt salesmen.

Mail - Frankfurt - Motor - Show - British

Speaking to the Mail at the Frankfurt Motor Show, British Mrs Jackson, who became chief executive of the French car giant three years ago, told how she has been the victim of sexism in showrooms and how sales staff have ignored her.

The 58-year-old grandmother regularly goes on mystery shopping exercises to garages to see how rivals are selling cars.

Mrs - Jackson - 'You - Lot - Customer

Mrs Jackson said: 'You do learn a lot about how the customer is treated. Sometimes you go into a showroom with your husband and they just turn to your male partner and say, 'how would you like to spend your money?'

'This is what we need to change. We want to make it easier for anyone to buy a car.

Women - Dealership - Car - Pressure - Woman

'When women go into a dealership, they want to touch, feel and drive the car. They don't want hard pressure. It's not about being a woman. It's about how I would want to be treated as a woman.'

Mrs Jackson made waves in the car industry when she became not only the first female to be appointed as boss of a French motor firm, but also the first British chief.

Coventry - Car - Industry - Accident - Job

Originally from Coventry, she joined the car industry almost by accident when she took a holiday job stapling invoices at Rover as a teenager.

She fell in love with cars and turned down a place to study teaching at Sussex Univeristy to stay on as an accounting clerk at the firm.

Decade - Finance - Director - Rover - France

Within a decade she was named finance director of Rover in France in 1998, and began climbing through the ranks of the French motor industry.

She met her husband David while working at Rover, and...
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