ISSUE NO. 10
Digital Business Women
BADA*SS BUSINESS WOMEN LEARN ABOUT THE CHALLENGES, THE UP AND DOWNS, THE ADVICES, THE WHY AND ALL GLORY OF BEINGÂ IN BUSINESS.
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This edition is all about women who found their strength and want to share their journey and challenges. This is the kind of women we want to validate and celebrate. You can only make a difference if you stand out and Be Bold for the Sake of the Next Generation who needs to find their voice and believe in themselves. Thank you for accepting my invitation to speak out loud about experiences and all the challenges that you faced in life - THANK YOU! Our main goal is to support women with genuine advice and practical ideas and observation of facts or events that would impact our lives. If you are looking for support and collaboration, you have found your place here. If you want to join us, contact us! Candyce Costa - Founder and CEO
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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS WHAT HE SAYS: JERE SEPPALA
INTERVIEWS ANGELA LIVINGSTONE CAROL CAMPOS ISABELA CARVALHO KATHRYN ROSE KRISTIN SHERRY JODI RILOT
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TECH INTERVIEWS ALEXANDRA CIOBORATU CAROLINE CARRUTHERS KATERINA TRAJCHEVSKA SUSANNE BIRGERSDOTTER TIJANA MOMIROV
DIGITAL BUSINESS WOMEN eMagazine|
TECH ARTICLES MUMS IN TECH: CAREER AND FAMILY NEED NOT BE AN XOR (EXCLUSIVE OR) RELATIONSHIP WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE? TECHBBQ: THE EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES
THE HIDDEN GIFT OF BECOMING AN EMPTY NESTER
WHAT HE SAYS - MR JERE SEPPALA
HOW I BECAME AN ACCIDENTAL ENTREPRENEUR HOW I GOT FEATURED IN FORBES AND 3 LESSONS I LEARNED
PIVOTAL MOMENTS - CHALLENGES OD THE LADY BOSS BOOK CLUB GADGETS RECOMMENDATIONS WOMEN IN TECH
CANDYCE COSTA A SUCCESFUL WOMEN IN TECH CASE STUDY
EMOJIS - WHY ARE YOU NOT USING THEM? (PROPERLY)
TACKLING THE SHORTAGE OF WOMEN IN STEM
HOW TO BE A BETTER ENTREPRENEUR
TECHBBQ COPENHAGEN DENMARK
EXPERTISE AS A PRODUCTIZED SERVICE
STOP BEING TERRITORIAL AND START WORKING TOGETHER
WOMEN IN TECH DUBLIN NOVEMBER: WEBSUMMIT LISBON WOMEN IN DATA LONDON
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Ai Addyson-Zhang, Classroom Without Walls, Founder, @AiAddysonZhang on all social channels
ADDYSON-ZHANG How did you decide to go into Digital Education?
To what do you attribute your success?
I had an unpleasant educational experience growing up. It planted the seed in me to make a difference in education. I believe the best education happens outside the classroom, and learning should be fun & transformative.
I have the perseverance to make things happen.
Did you always know that Education was what you wanted to do? Not really!
What's your favorite quote? When you become fearless, you become limitless.
Tell us about you and your business. Dr. Ai Addyson-Zhang is an educator and an entrepreneur. She received her MA and Ph.D. in Communication from Syracuse University and the University of Maryland. Ai is the founder of Classroom Without Walls, an innovative & independent school. Ai is also an Adobe Education Leader and HubSpot Academy Instructor.
AI ADDYSON-ZHANG Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? All the time. I learned to handle challenges in life through meditation and working on my mindset. I believe this statement, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business?
What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? Don't be afraid to be you. Each of us has our unique personalities and perspectives on things. Embrace and honor who you are. You are the differentiation factor in your business.
How do you find inspiration in your life?
I am a forever learner. I read and listen to books, listen to podcasts, As a mom of two young boys, read blog articles, watch live I wish there were more institutional streaming interviews, and attend conferences. I never stop support for women raising young learning. kids such as extended maternity
leave, flexible hours, etc
What did you learn from your biggest failure? Empower and transform the within to transform the without In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? Walk the talk when it comes to diversity.
WHEN YOU BECOME FEARLESS, YOU BECOME LIMITLESS. FAVOURITE QUOTE AI ADDYSON-ZHANG
Alexandra Ciobotaru Product Owner at Novorésumé
Tell us about you and your work. I have been working in the tech industry for the last 4 years as a business developer in start-ups and scale-ups. I am currently located in Copenhagen, Denmark, and my next journey includes a product owner role in a start-up focused on fighting intergalactic unemployment with an aim on the growth venture of the company.
How did you decide to go into StartUp Business Development ? My journey in the tech industry started when I joined a mobile app start-up. As I was fairly new to the job market, I started by helping the CEO with different tasks, but quickly kick off working with inbound leads and meeting clients to discover their needs. You can learn a lot from discussing with your target group about improvements, business strategies and how clients expect a SaaS provider to handle their request. Joining a start-up it’s definitely something I would advise tech-savvy students to consider when they’re starting their careers.
To what do you attribute your success? Success, as I see it now it's the feeling of accomplishment after giving my best. I trust every person has their own definition of success and for me, success comes from doing my job well, trying my best to become a better person every day, both personally and professionally, letting go of personal feelings when doing my job and overall understanding that life is more than a management position.
ALEXANDRA Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? I have never experienced a situation where I was discouraged to pursue my dreams, however, I disregarded some career options while growing up because I believed I wouldn’t fit the “usual” profile. Fields such as engineering or programming are not always the most obvious career choices for women. We should continue discussing inclusiveness in all fields and success stories from all individuals. What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? Just go for it. In many cases, what women lack is mentoring, thus my piece of advice is to reach out to professionals in the respective field of interest and ask anything that might prompt you to consider that career choice: What are the challenges of the job? How does a day as an XYZ look like? How do you deal with pressure? How do you organize your work to fulfill the project requirements? Did you always know that it was what you wanted to do? Soon after starting university I came in contact with many ambitious individuals who discussed their business ideas and initiatives and it seemed that technology was a natural way to enable those ideas to prosper. While being trained in communication and marketing, I joined different organizations and worked to build start-ups, where I understood the power of technology and automation.
What did you learn from your biggest failure? I believe failure is an imminent part of life, and I think it is a chance to start over and consider what can be done this time to be closer to success. Often times, fear of failure is a constraint and I personally give myself time to think about episodes when I considered I failed. I try to understand what could have been done better and move on. Patience is key. In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? Providing role models is key in order to encourage more women to aim for management positions. To start with, I believe that we need to encourage companies to showcase diverse teams, send gender balance teams to meet with clients and invest in training when needed so each individual has equal chances of succeeding. What's your favorite quote? I came across a quote while doing research for a workshop I hosted and it was something like: I don’t like to bet on things, but if there is one thing I would bet on, it’s myself. I truly believe that I possess the skills I need to succeed if I put my mind to it and I work every day towards my goals. I hope every person will find themselves in a moment when they are enough, and on the right path.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/busines? Often time, the biggest obstacle for succeeding is negative thinking. Thinking that you are not good enough for the role. I am a promoter of constant learning and I try to develop myself through courses, events and looking for new challenges in my work. In time, I understood that the biggest promoter of your work is yourself, thus I share when I am up for the challenge and when I need help. How do you find inspiration in your life? I listen to podcasts, I attend tech events and I try to stay on top of the news in my field. I find inspiration from success stories of women who trusted their intuition and developed some amazing products and projects, but I also feel inspired by my peers who always strive to deliver the best possible service to customers and have a work ethic that speaks for itself. Your tribe is your vibe.
I DON’T LIKE TO BET ON THINGS, BUT IF THERE IS ONE THING I WOULD BET ON, IT’S MYSELF. FAVOURITE QUOTE ALEXANDRA CIOBOTARU
Angela Livingstone Founder, The Pitch Bitch.
LIVINGSTONE Tell us about you and your business. My twenty-year career has revolved around my two passions: People and Technology. Essentially, I help businesses build stronger relationships with their customers using data and tech. I have worked everywhere from multinationals to startups in a variety of industries such as retail, telecom and FinTech. I also spend time mentoring women in data.
How did you decide to get into Data/Tech? It was both a `head’ and `heart’ decision. I’ve always been interested in human behaviour and I got lucky in the fact that the internet came about right as I was wrapping up my studies in Psychology - where I focused on cognitive and computing sciences (which in human terms is gaining an understanding of how the human mind works through the lens of Artificial Intelligence, Philosophy of Mind and the Neurosciences).
Did you always know that Data/Tech was what you wanted to do? Growing up I didn’'t know that my job today would exist. But, yeah, sort of! I've always been fascinated with people and I also knew early on that technology was going to be important. If you combine this with the fact that I was raised by a creative mother who had a way with words and a father who was an entrepreneur who started his own aeronautical engineering business my career path makes sense.
ANGELA LIVINGSTONE Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it?
What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business?
Never. I've been really lucky, my parents gave me every opportunity in life and I always felt supported to do anything I wanted. Any time someone tried to hold me back, man or woman, I simply chose my dreams over their opinion. Looking back on it this self-confidence has played a huge role in my career.
Conquer your fears. Whatever they may be, face them early on and get over them as early as possible. If this means you have to work with a coach, so be it. The last thing you want is to get to the end of your life only to realise that you (or your thoughts) were the biggest thing stopping you from going after your dreams. Most fears are only thoughts and if you can conquer them you can do anything.
In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? The first thing I can recommend is I would encourage every woman to simply become more active in this discussion. Join women's networking or support groups e.g. Women in Data and Tech. A great deal of women I speak with talk about how they don’t feel like they’re being heard. From my experience the best way to combat this is by leaning on other women in order to gain the courage to speak up. To what do you attribute your success? Growing up I got lucky. My dad was an incredible man. I wouldn't be half the woman I am without him. He taught me the importance of dreaming big and he gave me the courage to put myself out into the world. However, the older I get the more I am also learning to give credit to myself for my success. I’ve worked hard and taken advantage of opportunities in life when they presented themselves.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business? This may sound harsh, but I think the biggest thing holding most women back, is themselves (or at least their belief or confidence in themselves). During my career I have seen women with unbelievable skill sets and huge potential who chose to sit in the shadows instead of having the courage to stand up and be heard. Its a huge issue for women, especially in STEM, sciences and tech. What's your favorite quote? This is a really hard one. I love a great quote! To that end I have loads of favourites and find they are always most apt during the poignant moments in life. Today, I will leave you with a positive one “Always look on the bright side of life” (Monty Python).
What did you learn from your biggest failure? I did not make my health my number one priority. In the tech world there is this notion that like the machines we work with we have to always be on. But this is dangerous thinking. I pushed myself too hard and I did not allow myself to take proper breaks. I'm convinced it had a direct correlation to me contracting leukaemia a few years ago. The bottom line is we have a life - not just a career. How do you find inspiration in your life? Over the last five years, every single member of my immediate family has died. My brother to suicide, my dad to heart disease and my mum to cancer. During that time, I also faced my own death whilst struggling to beat leukaemia. Today, I find inspiration in just simply being alive. In short, now I’m pretty much inspired by everything. Life is so precious and no matter how hard, is beautiful.
ALWAYS LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE OF LIFE. MONTY PYTHON
FAVORITE QUOTE ANGELA LIVINGSTONE
Carol L. Campos Owner, Carol L. Campos Coaching & Co-host of The Divine Breadcrumb Podcast.
CAROLCAMPOS How did you decide to go into Leadership Coaching? For years (actually decades!) I didnâ€™t know what I wanted to do. I'd been working in the corporate world for over 20 years, most recently in a leadership role at a Fortune 5 company. Although I worked hard and was consistently recognized & promoted, I somehow knew that I was meant to do something different. I felt stuck in a life that didnâ€™t fit. In early 2018, I left my corporate job & made the leap into the unknown. After doing months of intense inner work with my coach, & reconnecting to my higher wisdom, I discovered that I could combine my life & business experience with my soulaligned interests. I knew I had a talent for building thriving, productive teams & helping people to see their unique strengths and gifts. Thus, The Divine Breadcrumb & my coaching practice was born.
Did you always know that Leadership Coaching was what you wanted to do? I always knew I liked helping people and hearing their stories. I also knew that I liked learning about metaphysics, quantum physics and various holistic & energetic healing modalities. But I didn't know how to put it all together into a viable business. As I started meeting with my own coach, I started to gain clarity. Once I was able to clear the emotional "goo," things began to change quickly.
Tell us about you and your business. I love to help people on their path. I'm a certified life coach, focusing on awareness, transition & purpose. I help my clients to clear old patterns & beliefs, connect to their heart intelligence, rewire the mind & discover meaning & purpose. I blog for The Divine Breadcrumb as well as co-host the podcast. It's a chance to let others shine!
CAROL CAMPOS Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? I think for some, because I left what appeared to be a cushy job, I was viewed as flighty or a dreamer and that I had squandered a golden opportunity. There were naysayers. But by the time I fully committed to my purpose, it didn't matter to me what others were saying. I felt like my purpose chose me and I couldn't ignore the call. It was scary to put myself out there, but so worth it! In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? Women need to be included on more boards & put in more of the decision-making roles. The workplace is a microcosm of society & should reflect that. Diversity & inclusion is hot topic but I've also found that, unfortunately, some women in leaderships roles are not supporting other women. We need to move from a competitive mentality to a collaborative one. Change only happen if we work together. What's your favorite quote? My favorite quote is from Anais Nin. It's a quote that sums up why so many people leave relationships or careers that no longer serve their highest good. "And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."
What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? Being an entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart & that includes coaching & podcasting. But the two go hand in hand, each business feeding the other. It's a way to help people 1:1 as well as on a more global scale. It's hard work. It means showing up EVERY day & treating it as a business, not a hobby. Engage a business coach or mentor. Stay open & keep a growth mindset. Don't give up! In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business? I think so many women are waiting for permission instead of asserting their authority & expertise. A lot of that comes from conditioning during our childhood, both familial and cultural. It takes some focused self-work to move past these limiting beliefs, but it's so important. Most of the time, these are subconscious beliefs which make them tougher to identify and address. To what do you attribute your success? I work hard. But I also have a circle of people around me that support me & love me. None of us get where we are alone. One of the biggest factors in my success has been to trust my intuition & tap into a source greater than me. I had to trust & believe that I was on the right path & to keep going. If something felt "off," I'd pivot slightly. If it felt good, I trusted that & moved forward.
What did you learn from your biggest failure? There's so much gold to mine from failure. You figure out what works & what doesn't. You realize that you're stronger & more resilient than you thought you were. It's all a huge learning experience & you're always where you're supposed to be on the journey. What looks like a failure now can look like a dodged bullet 5 years from now. Don't have regrets. Trust that it's for your highest good. How do you find inspiration in your life? My inspiration comes mainly through nature. Walking through a path in the woods, sitting by a lake, walking along a beach--all of these ground me & light me up at the same time. I also love chatting with people about their unique stories & the pivotal moments in their lives. Lucky for me I get to do that every day through my coaching and The Divine Breadcrumb podcast. I'm so grateful.
AND THE DAY CAME WHEN THE RISK TO REMAIN TIGHT IN A BUD WAS MORE PAINFUL THAN THE RISK IT TOOK TO BLOSSOM. ANAIS NIN
FAVOURITE QUOTE CAROL CAMPOS
Caroline Carruthers Chief Executive of Carruthers and Jackson Co-Author of Data Driven Business Transformation
Tell us about you and your career & business. I have spent my entire career working in technology. I'm currently the Chief Executive at Carruthers & Jackson, the company I co-founded to improve data literacy around the world. Prior to that I worked in various senior positions including being the first Chief Data Officer (CDO) at Network Rail.
How did you decide to go into Data/Tech? It was actually when I got a Commodore 64 when I was a teenager! I taught myself how to programme with that machine. I'd end up sitting in a pitchblack room making my own games and from then on I knew I wanted to do something "techy." My parents were always incredibly supportive and never allowed me or my sisters to think we couldn’t become anything we wanted.
Did you always know Tech was what you wanted to do? Yes, since that Commodore 64! To what do you attribute your success? Three things- An insatiable curiosity, a stubbornness that never allows me to say I can’t do something and the most amazing friends and family. That support network is probably the most important actually. They’re really the best!
CAROLINE CARRUTHERS Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? There's a situation that comes to mind where I wasn’t discouraged but certainly had my bubble burst. When I first found out I had got into university I felt amazing! I bumped into a neighbour who mentioned they had heard I was going to university but instead of offering a congratulations he said “why do you need a degree? You’r e not ugly?” It really helped me grow my skin a little thicker. What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? I would say this to women of all industries- everyone has a talent but sometimes you need to push yourself out of your comfort zone to find it. The thing that matters most is not limiting yourself based on other people’s preconceptions of who you are or what you should be doing. If you enjoy what you do, you’r e setting yourself up to have a fabulous career!
What did you learn from your biggest failure? At the start of my career I was pretending to be someone I wasn’t, and I think a lot of young women do that. You see how other people act and what other people are doing and assume that that’s what you should be doing. So many of my early setbacks were because I didn’t really fit in with other's preconceptions and I found that my career only took off when I stopped pretending to be someone else. In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? I think the most important thing a business can offer to be more inclusive for women is flexibility. Businesses should be prepared to offer flexibility in how, when and where we work. That obviously benefits everyone, but crucially enables a much more inclusive ethos for women who are mothers or carers. How do you find inspiration in your life? So, I have an amazing network of both men and women who I can always rely on to ask questions or ask for help and that is itself an inspiration to me. As a kid, my inspiration came from Maggie Philbin who was a TV presenter on the tech programme Tomorrow’s World. To see a woman on the TV playing around with geeky stuff has a huge impact on my life and inspired me to go into the career I so love!
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business? In every woman there is this little internal voice, this little internal doubter, which is constantly telling us we aren’t good enough, slim enough, clever enough, whatever it may be. We need to remember that we don’'t need to be perfect, we just need to let ourselves shine. Put yourselves forward! Go for that job! Make yourself heard! What's your favorite quote? It’'s actually a quote from Einstein, “It's not that I’'m so smart, it’'s just that I stay with the problems longer.” That element of humbleness from someone I find so inspirational speaks volumes to me. Oh, and that streak of stubbornness that I can totally relate to!
IT’S NOT THAT I’M SO SMART, IT’S JUST THAT I STAY WITH THE PROBLEMS LONGER. EINSTEIN FAVORITE QUOTE CAROLINE CARRUTHERS
Isabela Carvalho Business Consultant at HubSpot.
Tell us about you and your business.
How did you decide to go into Digital Marketing?
I'm a Marketing professional that discovered you can't do marketing properly without diving into other business areas like Sales and Services. I'm now working for HubSpot as a Business Consultant, helping partners grow and scale using the HubSpot software and other technologies. I'm passionate about Corporate Culture development and D&I efforts.
I entered the SaaS tech industry because I wanted to work as a Marketing consultant - so my first job was consulting on Inbound Marketing for Brazilian clients at a SaaS company. I thought that was just a means to an end, but ended up loving the tech industry and the endless possibilities to grow. What keeps me here is knowing I go to work every day to help someone grow. That aligns with my life purpose.
Did you always know that was what you wanted to do? Not at all. I thought I was going to learn how to be a good consultant and end up working for a Marketing/Advertising Agency. That today, is not aligned with what I want for my future, but you never know.
CARVALHO ISABELA Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? Never. I've always been very privileged to have a supportive family and inclusive work environments, but I realize that is not even close to the reality for lots of women. What I have felt is less heard than men in the same position as me. What I do in these cases is present solid rock data to support my arguments, and document everything I can. What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? Improve your people skills. Anyone can learn how to operate software, not everyone can read and communicate with different types of people. Exercise being empathetic. That not only makes everyone's lives easier, it also helps you understand what motivates people and how to get what you want from them (in a good way). Learn how to read basic data and how to act on it. To what do you attribute your success? My family who always supported me, my privilege to have worked and learned with really amazing people, my curiosity and willingness to work hard.
What did you learn from your biggest failure? I once committed to too many projects at once and ended up not delivering the most important one the way it should have been. Learn to say "no" to new projects based on their potential impact and your capacity to actually deliver. Everyone wants to save the world. Not everyone realizes it can only be done one step at a time. In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women?
I honestly don't know a company that puts in more effort into building a diverse and inclusive workspace than HubSpot. A huge part of our executive leadership is made of women, we hired a Director of D&I recently and we have lots of initiatives just for women. HubSpot does not tolerate sexist behaviors, and we have the full support of HR in case we don't feel comfortable with any situation. What's your favorite quote? The woman you're becoming will cost you people, relationships, spaces, and material things. Chose her over everything.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business?
I believe the main challenge is not being heard for being women and having to prove everything they say, while men usually don't have to. You can either complain about it or choose to act on it. Learn how to pull, read and act on data. The most "badass" women I know acknowledge that is an issue but do what needs to be done. How do you find inspiration in your life? I talk to people I admire - and ask unusual questions to really understand them. If I got a 30 min lunch with, idk, let's say Bill Gates - I wouldn't ask what his morning routine is or how he manages his time. That's probably on youtube. I'd ask him what he would ask the person he admires the most. I'd ask him what he thinks God looks like. I'd ask him what his childhood smelled or sounded like.
THE WOMAN YOU'RE BECOMING WILL COST YOU PEOPLE, RELATIONSHIPS, SPACES, AND MATERIAL THINGS. CHOSE HER OVER EVERYTHING. FAVOURITE QUOTE ISABELA CARVALHO
Jodi Rilot Riot Consulting, Executive Coach and Leadership Consultant
Tell us about you and your business.
How did you decide to go into Management Consulting?
I became a coach after a 20 year career spanning Management Consultancy at Accenture, and in-house organisation effectiveness/leadership roles at places like ITV, BT and Heathrow. I coach individuals and teams, helping them to be more successful, more resilient and more fulfilled at work. I do key note speeches on topics like Imposter Syndrome.
Management Consultancy was an obvious choice to me as a graduate because I had no clear view on what I wanted to do. It offered the opportunity to work for a variety of clients in project roles, giving me the experience I needed to then decide where to specialise. Career progression was rapid and the pay was good. It was an excellent way to start my working life. Though the coding was a complete shock to me. And I was not good at it!
Did you always know that was what you wanted to do? What I am doing now - exec coaching and leadership development - was a gradual realisation. I quickly discovered that my strengths lay not in technical design and development but rather in understanding the impact of change on the people in the organisation, and the customers they served. This gradually developed into an interest in behavioural psychology and organisational culture.
Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it?
Not in the way you mean. I have always felt encouraged and supported at work, plus I'm not easily discouraged! In my early career I had a laugh at work. I was perfectly happy engaging in the kind of "banter" that today I would find unpalatable. But was I put off by the macho culture of long working hours? Yes. Did I see anyone at partner level who seemed like someone I would aspire to be? No. What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? A career in organisational change is rewarding, both financially and intellectually. Management Consultancy is a great place to start. Having a solid grounding in technology is important, as it is such a catalyst for cultural change. And understanding the commercial drivers of a client's business is essential if you are to have gravitas as a coach. What's your favorite quote? Can I cheat and choose two? "Be your own biggest fan instead of your own worst critic", Dr Steve Peters, author of The Chimp Paradox. And "What you permit, you promote". I have no idea where this originated, but I attribute it to my friend and ex-colleague Ruth Shaw. I use it when I find myself complaining. It reminds me to take responsibility - to DO something or else put up with it!
What did you learn from your biggest failure? That it's as important to know what you're NOT good, at as it is to know what you ARE good at. And *news flash* it's ok not to be good at everything. Really, it is. And any mistake you make, large or small, is soon forgotten by other people. Whilst you're still dwelling and wasting precious time and energy replaying the what if's, everyone else has moved on. So, bank the learning and move on! In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? Inclusive environments for me are about ensuring that people of all personality types feel like they belong and have an equal opportunity to succeed. Being conscious about the kind of culture that you are creating is key. What passes for "good leadership" around here, from CEO down? What behaviours and attitudes do you reward, celebrate, award promotions and bonuses to?
To what do you attribute your success? I can pretty much get along with most people, which is probably at the heart of it. People tell me that I bring positive energy and that I build trust quickly. And underpinning this lies goodold fashioned hard work. I prepare thoroughly and have high standards: consultancy taught me that. I would hate for anyone to feel like I'd let them down or not delivered good value.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeeding in the workplace/business?
Corporate culture. Every time. By this, I mean the role models, the stories people tell, the formal and informal processes that reinforce or undermine the words on the visionstatement posters. What efforts are organisations really making to create an environment where any under-represented group can flourish at work? Equal benefits like shared parental leave for men and women are big step. How do you find inspiration in your life? I read voraciously, mostly contemporary literary fiction. I go to talks, consume podcasts and TedTalks, read HBR &New Scientist articles. I go to the theatre and take acting classes. My friends are a constant inspiration to me and a source of energy. Smart and funny, they write; run businesses; manage complex schedules; play all kinds of sport. They are my greatest supporters, as I am theirs.
BE YOUR OWN BIGGEST FAN INSTEAD OF YOUR OWN WORST CRITIC. DR STEVE PETERS FAVOURITE QUOTE JODI RILOT
THE HIDDEN GIFT OF BECOMING AN EMPTY NESTER. I had heard the term “empty nester” most of my life and never gave it much thought. That is, until I became one myself. Sure, I knew it was going to be hard to say goodbye to my daughter, Chloe, when the time came to drop her off at school. But I wasn’t prepared for the wide range of feelings and emotions that bubbled up. No one had ever talked to me about that. I got comments such as “what are you going to do when she’s gone?” Or, “you two are really close and I bet it’s going to be really hard for you.” Gee, thanks. I had been gearing up for D-day (drop-off day) all summer. Chloe was very excited, and, thanks to modern technology, had “met” her roommates via Facebook, email and text well before school started. She and her roommates had the obligatory calls about how they wanted to decorate their room, what the color scheme would be, who was bringing what, etc. The parents’ job is simply to pay for it, which I did after a very lengthy trip to Target. Chloe filled our cart with all the essentials. It brought back a lot of memories. In so many ways, things had changed since I had gone away to college. But this shopping trip wasn’t much different from the one I did with my mother almost 25 years prior. Soon move-in day was upon us and I managed to keep my emotions in check during the drive to the school, the countless trips back and forth from the car to the room, and even during our goodbyes. Chloe was excited and happy which made me happy. But when I got home, everything changed. The house felt different. It was eerily quiet and everything felt strange. It was as if I had walked into a vacuum, like there was a void where Chloe’s energy should be. I remember telling myself “it will be ok; she’ll be back for a visit soon.” But suddenly the tears came, slowly at first and then turning into full-blown sobs. I cried for a long time. When I finally peeled myself off the couch, I had a thought that I had never had before: “Who am I now?”
As parents, our lives revolve around our children. That’s not to say we don’t have our own interests or friends, but our primary role is to take care of our kids. What are they going to eat today? Do we need to buy them new clothes? How are their grades? Are they happy? How are they getting to soccer practice? The list goes on and on. For most of us, we don’t give it a ton of thought. It just IS. Until it isn’t. So, when the question “Who am I now?” popped in my head, I didn’t have an answer. And THAT freaked me out. No one had prepared me for this identity crisis. This was different than simply missing my daughter. This was way bigger. It was such a foreign feeling that it took a few weeks to process. It didn’t help that Chloe’s first pet, a big lovable cat named Leo, would sleep at her door, hoping she’d emerge. There’s nothing sadder than an animal missing his/her person. As the weeks passed, I settled into a new normal. I became accustomed to the quiet. I still had moments where I felt like she would burst in the door any second, but the sadness had lessened. I became aware of some pleasant perks: no dirty dishes in the sink, leftovers were still waiting for me when I got home from work, and I had complete control over the TV remote. But on a deeper level something interesting was happening, something that hadn’t happened in a very long time: I started to put myself first. Suddenly I had so much more space in my head for things that I hadn’t thought about in ages. That’s when I started realizing the hidden gift in being an empty nester. It’s the beginning of a second act and you can do virtually anything you want. I suppose one could argue that I could have done what I wanted while Chloe was still living at home. But honestly, I simply didn’t have the energy. I think that’s the case for so many of us. Each year we go to work, we raise our kids, take a vacation here and there and repeat. We don’t resent it, and in fact, for the most part, we really enjoy it-both the good and bad times-because we love our kids. But it doesn’t leave a lot of time for our own self-development, our own interests. As an empty nester, you can once again start exploring what you want to do, what you want to experience, and what lights you up. It’s an extraordinary feeling of freedom and it’s really exciting to take your dreams off the back burner! When I dropped Chloe off 10 years ago, I couldn’t have imagined the many ways in which my life would change. I started studying all the things that interested me. I attended workshops and conferences. I became certified in various energy healing modalities. I found a like-minded tribe. Being an empty nester gave me the time and energy I needed to follow my true path. It helped me build the springboard for what I’m doing now. Did I go through an adjustment period when Chloe left for school? Yes, of course I did. And you will too. Just like with any life change, you’ll learn and grow from it. But this time, after the dust settles, you’ll begin to get a glimpse of all the new and amazing possibilities and you’ll be able to fill your nest once again.
About Carol Campos Carol Campos is a certified life coach, focusing on intuition, awareness, transition & purpose. She is also the creator & co-founder of The Divine Breadcrumb podcast & online community. Carol spent over 20 years in the corporate world and offers coaching to small & mid-size companies to up-level the skill sets of their customer service teams. To work with Carol, you can write to her at firstname.lastname@example.org or schedule a discovery call on her website: carollcampos.com
HOW I BECAME AN ACCIDENTAL ENTREPRENEUR When Peter Jackson (my brilliant co-author and fellow Chief Data Officer, not the director of Lord of the Rings) suggested we should write a book together, I thought it would be one of those great ideas that fades away. Real life commitments would get in the way or new idea would take precedence. Except, this one stucka tiny seed of an idea became something that would lead me and Peter down a path neither one of us could ever have imagined. That book became â€œThe Chief Data Officers Playbookâ€? which was our summation of all the things a Chief Data Officer (CDO) needed to know. It resonated with so many of our colleagues and data leaders, but we realised that we had missed something. We had written a book for data leaders, but what about everyone else? What about the people who wanted to understand how data could help their business, their career or even just their community?
Somewhere along the line we began being asked for advice from people outside of the data world about data transformation. With both of us in full time employment, despite really wanting to help, it was just impossible to properly champion the transformative power of data with the time constraints we faced. Then, after a latenight brainstorming session and a whole lot of courage, we decided to start a business. I won the coin toss for the name, and so Carruthers and Jackson was born. My head was so full of the possibilities for our new venture. In the end, we effectively set up three companies in one. First, we are a data consultancy for those companies and professionals who wanted our help on transforming their businesses with the power of data. We are also a conference called DataTalks, which brings together data leaders to share and inspire others in the industry. Finally, and to me most importantly, we are an education service, spreading data literacy to all levels.
It’s been around a year since I left the safety of full-time employment to run our business. It wasn’t really until very recently though that I considered myself an entrepreneur. In a way, I’d been so busy swimming that I hadn’t realised I’d jumped off of a massive cliff into entrepreneurship. My first year as an accidental entrepreneur has had some amazing moments- from seeing the amazing progress that our clients have made with their data maturity right through to being at a conference and hearing my own voice on a giant screen. I’ve met representatives from the European Union and the European Central Bank and advised them on how to build an effective data strategy, and I’ve been able to track the process of graduates from our Chief Data Officers Summer School, a course we run every year in partnership with Collibra, a data governance technology company, for CDOs. Being an accidental entrepreneur isn’t all plain sailing, of course. There have been times where I’ve literally felt I’ve been too busy to breathe. No matter how much you do, when you’re at the head of a start-up there is always so much more. It can be daunting when you start a new business and anyone who becomes an entrepreneur, either by accident or by design, should know that there will be struggles before you reach the most rewarding parts of owning a business. That said, after a year as an accidental entrepreneur, I wouldn’t change a thing. In a way, I'm glad I didn’t realise that I was jumping off of that cliff when I set up Carruthers and Jackson- the daunting prospect of beginning a business is enough to put many people off. I can’t wait to see what the next year brings and to be given the opportunity to help organisations, industry leaders and those hoping for a career in my industry to understand, appreciate and love all things data. About Caroline Carruthers Caroline is an internationally-recognised author, entrepreneur, speaker, events organiser and “data cheerleader” from the North of England. She has worked across multiple industries in strategic data and IT roles, most recently as the Group Director of Data at the Lowell Group and the first Chief Data Officer for Network Rail. Alongside co-author Peter Jackson, Caroline published The Chief Data Officers Playbook a practical guide for data professionals in the new, data-driven world. Their second book, Data Driven Business Transformation, was released earlier this year and rose to become a top-1000 Amazon listed title. Caroline is currently a Director and co-founder at Carruthers and Jackson, set up to work with organisations around the world to improve data maturity. The company has run several international events such as the CDO Summer School and the DataTalks conferences."
MUMS IN TECH: CAREER AND FAMILY NEED NOT BE AN XOR (EXCLUSIVE OR) RELATIONSHIP Last Wednesday I’ve joined an event called Mums in Tech, how to balance work & family — Webinar + Virtual Networking, which was held by Women In Tech and hosted by Remo.This is the first time I’ve joined a WIT event as well as a remote event. As a mum in tech, it’s been hard to find people with whom I can relate to. Most of my colleagues have been men or don’t have kids yet. Even with other mums, conversations about motherhood rarely went beyond superficial topics. Motherhood can be hard with all the physical and emotional changes, all the exhaustion and sleep deprivation, and all the expectations implicitly or explicitly imposed. It takes a village to raise children, yet we often find ourselves alone. We spent months preparing for the baby’s birth, yet we never really prepared ourselves for the birth of the mother within us. Besides all these, we can be so hard on ourselves at times. We want to be the best mums for our most precious little treasures, and as we go back to work, we want to prove the world and ourselves how capable we still are. I remember how hard it was when I went back to work. I was tired and sleep-deprived, and I missed my little baby. Despite my brain not functioning properly (and as a programmer, I really needed it), I tried hard to hide it all and prove myself capable in front of others.
Eventually, I got better on my track. Having an awesome company manager who supported me since pregnancy helped a lot, as she is a mom and she understood how hard it can be and helped me on some occasions. Being appreciated by my company also gave me more confidence to overcome the challenges throughout the past two years.Being vulnerable is scary. What if others discover that I may not be as productive in my worse days? What if others see me as a less effective member of the team whenever I take days off to take care of my child? My child will always come first. Yet I also want to prove myself capable.Sometimes I wondered what if I shared how I felt. I did share it a few times on some online communities, but rarely at work because I was afraid of what could happen. Yet on a few occasions, some mums at work did share how insecure they felt, how stressful it was and how much they missed their babies. As they shared their experience, I felt less alone, more understood and that I could also do it too. But most importantly, that it is ok if I’m not doing everything perfectly. During the Mums in Tech event, the key speakers Romana Ibrahim, Abigail Julian, Candyce Costa, and Kathryn Rose shared their experiences as well as insights on the topic of how to balance family and work. One of the things that came up was how to manage expectations. Sometimes we expect so much of ourselves that we feel frustrated and exhausted of all the things we want to do. Whether a pile of laundry, a parenting book or professional projects, some days it can be frustrating to not be able to get anything done at all.But sometimes, what matters is not if we can make everything happen, but that we make things happen even if slower.It is ok to not do things perfectly. It is ok to not achieve all of our goals right away. As long as we keep on making things happen, we will achieve our goals.We should also remind ourselves of what we already achieved instead of focusing too much on what is yet to achieve. This event allowed us to exchange experience with motherhood and work, learn from each other, and feel that we are not alone. That we can do it too. I'm really glad to feel inspired and being able to find others with whom I can relate to.
Mónica Valverde Senior Developer at Gfi Portugal
WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE? This year's #ScienceWeek around the world is going to be about Climate Change, no surprise there. Climate Change, what's it all about? For some people it's deforestation, for others its plastic in the worlds oceans, for others again its bees and endangered animals. For me though its all of these things. Climate Change is a big issue on all of these levels from something as “small” as the bees disappearing and dying to something as “big” as the icebergs melting and the water rising. These are all big issues and its tipping the balance of the way the Earth is meant to be. There are a lot of ideas coming out, that make it possible for everyone to get involved in researching and bringing data that will be useful to support our planet. Visit Earth Day to learn more, it is just one way you can get involved in changing our planet for the better. Check it out! OVERVIEW: WHAT IS CLIMATE CHANGE? Climate Change is, in my view, a long chain reaction. Eg. You don’'t recycle your plastic water bottle, it then ends up in a landfill. It then drifts into the ocean and (eventually) breaks up into micro plastic. A fish eats it, fish dies, we catch the fish, we eat the fish and now that plastic is inside our bodies. Another example is: you waste electricity (you leave the lights on all night), the fossil fuels used to power all that electricity gets burned. This drifts into the atmosphere, joins the ever-growing amount of Green House Gases, they prevent the heat from the Earth from drifting into space, the Earth warms up, the ice caps melt, the water level rises and polar bears and penguins are losing their places to live. To summarise this large, global event, we are hitting the planet and the planet is fighting back.
SCHOOL STRIKES/FRIDAYS FOR FUTURE Greta Thurnberg is a Swedish girl who cares very deeply about the environment. She has started something called a School Strike, which caught on and now is being done all over the world. A School Strike is when children skip school, and go out and spread the word about what’s really happening in the world. Countries are now calling Environmental Crisis’s which shows that these strikes are working. BEES AND OTHER ANIMALS Bees all over the world are dying and scientists blame Pesticides in farming for causing this drop in the amount of bees in the world. This is worrying, because bees are essential in the growth of 1/3 of the worlds food and 90% of the worlds flowering plants. Animals are also going extinct, especially the Amur Leopard, Giant Panda, Sea Turtle, Orangutan, Sumatran Elephant and many more. Deforestation and poachers have been the main causes of these land and sea creatures disappearing. The most endangered animal is the Amur Leopard, there are less than 60 left in the wild, making them critically endangered. DEFORESTATION This isn’'t just the cause of animals losing places to live. It's also causing the carbon dioxide inside trees to be released into the atmosphere at an estimated 2.57 million pounds EVERY SECOND. By cutting down these trees, we are poisoning our air, causing Global Warming and destroying the natural landscape of our Earth, all in one go. THE THREE Rs (REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE) Plastic is one of the main causes of climate change. It takes one plastic straw 100 years to break down, plastic bottles take 450 years to decompose and it takes a plastic bag 1000 years to decompose! Plastic also ends up in the worlds oceans, and usually ends up in one of 5 plastic islands in the worlds oceans. The largest island is called The Great Pacific Garbage Patch. It’'s halfway between Hawaii and California. What we need to do to stop the islands from forming is to stop using single-use plastic or maybe get a hold of some biodegradable containers. And if you really have to keep using plastic, then at least, when you’'re done with it, drop it in a recycling centre so it can become something new. Climate change is such a large, widespread thing. I hope that I have alerted people to what Climate Change is and have explained it in a way that everyone can understand. Until next time, goodbye. Hi My name is Ciara and I am 11 years old. My Mum and I set up this page to share with other parents and kids my journey learning about Space and Science. I hope you find these posts useful and learn with me and together we can reach for the skies and fulfill our dreams!You're welcome to come back to the page as often as you like or you can subscribe to my blog updates on the home page. Check out the Testimonial below from Midlands Science! You can also message me if you want and perhaps make suggestions about things for me to look at by email to email@example.com. I have visited various places and have written about what I have learned whilst there. Please look through the blog and if you do visit these places, let them know Ciaras Journey sent you!
THE EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES AT #TECHBBQ 2019 This years theme of “Emerging Technologies” has amassed a large range of entrepreneurs from all over Scandinavia to come and share their vision at TechBBQ. With over 2900 startups, 600 scaleups and 750 investors TechBBQ has become the largest startup and innovation summit in this part of the world. This years event sold out the day before it started with 8,000 tickets sold. The themes carried forward throughout the event covered Ecosystems, Mental Health, Emerging Technologies, Breakthrough and Global Conservation. There is easy access to the Founders and excellent space to present their vision. Around the sides and throughout the main hall there are areas to meet and chat with Investors as well.
The CloudTech crunch is in full flow here and the innovations a-plenty. Meet some of the Exhibitors:
Whispr They bring processes and procedures to frontline service staff to help them train and be accountable in Real Time. This assists with better understanding where the bottlenecks are in the company, as the user can account for issues as and when they occur. The user is given a discreet ear piece that they can wear throughout the day and they can check and verbally tick off what was former cumbersome paper checklists. These lists though useful stop the worker from completing the next task for a few minutes. Instead with Whispr they can verbalise a command to the hidden mouthpiece means that their hands remain free. I spoke with Hugh O’Flanagan, CEO about his Startup. He gave me an example of one of his clients that has hotel housekeeping staff. He stated that their client could have a staggering staff turnover of 73.5% per annum. This means potentially there could be two or more staff down for upards of 90 days whilst having to train new members of staff. Whispr with its AI offers frontline training and reporting to to the business owner in its own dedicated dashboard.
The device is something you can ask about where to find products, what to do next in a certain room or scenario and it responds immmediately with the prepared textualisation that’s been added. You can ask it go back, repeat or skip as required as well. This means that no shadowing is required by a further staff member. This tool is meant to be entirely handsfree but a screen is available if required.
It’s very similar to a Spotify Playlist but instead is a workflow. It directs you to areas to complete and suggests what needs to be done and you can confirm whether it has or not in simple one word commands. It also comes in various languages as well.
Unbiased Sukesh Kumar Tedla was at #TechBBQ from Sweden to promote his technology that uses AI and Blockchain. Back in 2017 he made enquiries on what kind of content Google and Facebook had on him and was stunned when Google came back with gigabites of information. This even included phone calls, times he called people and the durations. Around this time it was also still early PresidentTrump era and the words “Fake News” was being banded about frequently too. He felt that the access of information that these large organisations had on their audience was far too powerful and although their “streams” gave a personalised structure to what they displayed, it could potentially still engender ignorance and “Fake News” to the reader. For example, if you searched for lots of content on a sport with one slant, you would only ever see similar content from searches in the future. He then spent a large proportion of time conducting research on how people consume their data. For instance, would you see something on Facebook and perhaps double check it or get further information in Twitter or head straight to Google? Very soon his company will be opening a public application of Unbiased and this will continue to educate their company in information consumption.
This new search engine will show the “searcher” unbiased search results in the hope that a more rounded opinion is served to the user. They don’t guarantee however the accuracy of the information or the source, only that the information is no longer influenced by an algorithm. I can see excellent uses for political and societal researchers, Journalists and of course to people who want to learn more rounded opinions on a topic.
Fynoti Þröstur Sveinsson started his entrepreneurial journey back in 2004 whilst living in Denmark (he hails from Iceland) and he met Jesper Buch, the founder of Just Eat. At the time it was just a small startup. They met over a lecture and got chatting and he eventually opened the very first franchise of Just Eat back in Iceland. He managed that for 5 years and learnt everything he needed to know about a startup. He closed down the franchise as the economy bit 5 years later and moved back to Denmark and met a new partner who started a company that initially worked in software, then IoT solutions. It was a very challenging time that kept them growing. Whilst all this growth and change was happening unfortunately his partner had a burglary and he had no alarm system as it costs a fortune in Denmark. The current leader in this field is a company called Very Sure, then a few others like G4S, Securitas etc. The way their companys work is that you buy the standard system that ranges between 4-7,000 Danish Kroner to put in and then a monthly subscription of 400-500 Danish Kroner for monitoring. It’s much too expensive for many people in Denmark. There is currently only 25% of households who can afford a security system for their homes. Unsurprisingly Denmark has the highest burglary rate per capita in Europe. 30,000 break ins in Denmark per year. In order to keep the price down on his system, he has created a neighbourhood watch type system. It’s all in the best interest of this community based warning and check system that this works. Currently when paying with the market leaders you have a monitoring station and someone will come out if required. That is why you pay a monthly subscription. What Þröstur and his team have created is several (hopefully hundreds) of these systems are in your locale. Thereby when an alarm goes off, one or many of your neighbours will come out to inspect your property and see if everything is OK. If they are concerned on arrival, just like the larger companies, they would call the local Police station to attend.They have currently sold 2,200 of these alarms (in a Crowdfunding campaign last year) and 100 subscribers for this system that they are piloting in one area. Although there is no duty for the people in your area to attend, the hope is that you can reciprocate for them one day if needed and it really is something that you have tangibly agreed too once collecting the alarm for your own home. The system works by heat measurement and only goes off when there has been a change. It can be installed by the home owner as its very small and portable and only really needs to be in areas where people have normal access in and out of the home. You can have pets in the home by simply leaving the area on the floor hidden by putting something in front of the sensor. This is definitely one to watch in Denmark.
CrystalSpace Jaan Viru started CrystalSpace 5 years ago when he was part of the Estonian first satellite team ESTCube-1. His (and others) skillset was utilised to make this a reality and when the project was finished, he wanted to use his experience going forward in a similar fashion. His company focuses in nanosatellite research, design and development. He was telling me there was a large gap in the market for more reasonably priced cameras that can be taken into space. However, they wanted to design equipment that was as useful on Earth as in Space. To this end they have created imaging for Vacuum Chambers. Both of these are uniquely difficult environments to monitor. Their cameras can be used for monitoring mission critical events like watching Solar Panel deployment and antennae deployment. Then through to Assay and Vacuum chamber monitoring.
The current method for “seeing” both of these are real time human monitoring but normally from a potentially obstructive viewpoint. For example, you maybe in a space capsule or on the ISS to watch deployment of Solar Panels with the potential of eye damage from reflective material. Then the Vacuum Chamber classically is already a small piece of equipment with a very small “viewport” that creates its own issues. They have made it possible to retrofit Vacuun Chambers with cameras and lighting if required, that is much more presciptive and affordable without adding a hole to the chamber. They can take photos, record and have a live feed – whatever is required. These are but a few of the enormous array of Startups at this years #TechBBQ. They have all come to generate interest, funding / investment and support for their creations. I was struck by the variety and the many countries that were represented at this years event. I look forward to learning and reporting more about each of these amazing companies in the future. About Melanie Boylan Mad about Social Media and supporting Start Ups and Small Businesses. I can train, consult and manage business owners social media platforms for their business. Writer/SMM @Irish_TechNews | #tech | #bitcoin | #Blogger |#Networking | #training | #Sponsor | #Speaker | #womensinspire | #socialmedia | #nerd
WOMEN IN TECH DUBLIN AWARDS
Congratulations to all the winners of the Women in Tech Awards 2019 Disruptor sponsored by Wrike - Niamh Sterling - Recipe Guru Rising Star sponsored by LEODublinCity - Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy – ApisProtect Data Scientist sponsored by Kantar Millward Brown - Michaela Blott – Xilinx Mentorship sponsored by Fiserv - Jacinta Walker – Qualtrics Diversity Role Model Award sponsored by Sysnet Global Solutions - Mary Browne – Citi HR Diversity Initiative sponsored by PwC Ireland - Facebook HR TeamDiverse Company Of The Year sponsored by permanent tsb - Accenture Ireland Women in Tech Initiative sponsored by Version 1 - CWIT Ireland (Connecting Women in Tech) Grace Hopper sponsored by Science Foundation Ireland - Barbara McCarthy – Ding.com
HOW I GOT FEATURED IN FORBES & THREE LESSONS I LEARNED It is not very often that I see my own name mentioned in major publications such asÂ Forbes! However, when it does happen, the learning curve can be quite steep. On Monday August 6, 2018, Forbes featured my entrepreneurial journey as a college professor. In this article, Forbes contributor Robyn Shulman did an interview with me, where I shared twelve lessons that I learned from my self-reinvention journey.
The first time you do anything is hard. In this article, I am going to pull away the curtain and share with you how I got the opportunity be featured in Forbes. I will also share three key takeaways that I learned from this experience.I hope my insights can help you gain access to large publications and move your life and career forward.If you love the lessons here, please leave a comment below. I love hearing from you because it allows me to serve you better. I hope my insights can help you gain access to large publications and move your life and career forward.If you love the lessons here, please leave a comment below. I love hearing from you because it allows me to serve you better. The Power of Large Publications
As an educator for more than ten years, I was only familiar with academic publications. The Forbes article was the first time that I encountered the power of mainstream publications. Because of this, I have also decided to make writing for large publications a priority.Â It is low-budget, but the impact is tremendous in terms of publicity and accomplishing business goals and objectives. The Forbes article went live on Monday, August 6. Nine days later on August 15, the article gained almost 2,200 views. You can see the number from the image.
Besides the publicity on the Forbes website, I gained tons of organic engagement on various social media platforms including Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter. Take Facebook as an example, I gained 370+ “reactions” from people, 110+ comments, and 20 shares, as of 08/15/18. This is the best organic engagement that I have reached in a long time.
Besides these numbers, the article also promoted a few individuals and institutions reach out to me regarding my product and service. In addition, I got booked for several podcast interviews. To me, every possibility, regardless of its outcome, has brought me hope and confidence as a new entrepreneur. Develop Your Own Thought Leadership, Product, and Service
To effectively optimize the impact of large publications, it’s critical that we have a defined product or service. I have been a content creator for a year now. Before this point, I was a loyal lurker or content consumer. I consumed content voraciously to the extent that I had little time, energy, or brain power left to produce any of my own material. However, ever since I started to produce original content on a regular basis through my weekly Facebook live show, blogging, and online course, I observed a noticeable change in my business development. In fact, I gained many new business ideas through producing content on a regular basis. Creating content helps me understand my core message and target audience, and validate market demand. I have come to see that to develop one’s thought leadership in a specific field, one has to offer valuable and original content, consistently, to help improve other people’s lives and solve their problems. Without content, one won’t have the necessary foundation to develop a business. Fortunately, I did launch my consulting service before the Forbes article write-up. So, when people did contact me for service and help, I actually had something that I could offer. Even though I have just started my entrepreneurial journey, I was able to clearly articulate my brand, service, and core message. This has helped me leverage the impact I gained via large publications. Cultivating One-On-One Social Connections
Throughout my 3.5-year social media journey, I pride myself on cultivating genuine relationships with people and building meaningful communities. I treat everyone the same regardless of their follower base and I value human connections more than anything else. I don’t even have fancy social media tools. I simply use my hands, mouth, ears, and some free tools. In the spirit of building relationships, my Forbes article started with a connection on Twitter. Every time when someone follows me on Twitter (I go through the same process on LinkedIn and Instagram), I take a look at the person’s background and see if we share any common interest and passions. If so, I send the person a personalized note to connect further. Oftentimes, I reference back to a piece of content that the person has listed in the bio or the website. On Twitter, I normally create a list and add these like-minded people to relevant lists. On LinkedIn, I bookmark relevant connections. This strategy was how I got connected with an education innovation expert on Twitter, through whom I got connected with the Forbes contributor. After developing some initial interactions with the contributor, when the time felt ready, I reached out to her and pitched my article. It took me lots of courage to send her a message, but I am glad that I did it. However, I have to say that having some prior interactions has helped build rapport. Let’s face it, nobody likes being sold to. Here is my humble advice: Forget about all the fancy tools, equipment, and complicated strategies and tactics especially when you are just starting out. Sometimes, social media is as simple as being social. Spend time cultivating deeper connections and serving people. You might be surprised by the results.
Pitch the Right Editor or Contributor
How do you feel when someone sends you a cold pitch over Direct/Private Message on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn right after you follow them? They have no idea what you are doing or who you are, but they want to sell you their products or services. I absolutely hate this tactic. It feels so annoying that I almost want to unfollow them right after I receive such a cold message. Imagine a large publication like Forbes that receives thousands of pitches every single day. You want to make sure that you are pitching the right editor or contributor. There is nothing worse than receiving a generic message that has no relevance to what they cover. Messages like this probably won’t even be opened. When you are pitching editors, it is crucial that you understand what they cover and make sure that you reach out to the right contact. In my case, I pitched a contributor who covers education and entrepreneurship. And in the Forbes article, I shared the top 12 lessons I learned from my entrepreneurial journey as a college professor. In summary, when you reach out to editors, I urge you consider two things: ✅ Make sure that your pitch is relevant to what they cover and write about ✅ Put yourself in the shoes of the editors or contributors and make their job as easy as possible. When I pitched the contributor, I had the twelve points written out. Even with this, it still took some time for the contributor to get back to me, which I completely understood. The truth is these editors and contributors are extremely busy, and many of them have full-time jobs besides being writers. You want to respect their time and make this process as easy as possible. Conclusion
Below are the three key takeaways that I gained from being featured in @Forbes. Develop your own thought leadership, product, and service The power of social connections Pitch the right editor or contributorWhich point resonated the most with you? About Ai Addyson-Zhang, Ph.D. I am a thought leader in alternative education. I believe the best education happens outside the classroom, hence, Classroom Without Walls. I taught in higher education for more than a decade. I've witnessed & experienced how our educational system is NOT preparing our students for the future. The old model is no longer sufficient to serve our students in a constantly disrupted world That's WHY I built Classroom Without Walls, an alternative, innovative, and independent school. --Classroom Without Walls offers a holistic approach to help the next generation become future-ready 1. It offers online classes and in-person immersions programs that cover a wide range of subjects across the & throughout the year to cultivate students' essential skills and mindsets 2. Its core curriculum incorporates 3 elements essential to lifelong learning & career fulfillment: The mind+The hand+The heart. Classroom Without Walls's mission is to make 1. formal education optional 2. exam-based evaluation obsolete 3. personalized learning affordable, additive, relevant, independent yet collaborative, & interdisciplinary. Apply to join the Entrepreneurship Immersion in Singapore as a mentor/studenthttps://www.classroomwithoutwalls.ai/ I also work with school leaders and teachers to understand how to incorporate creative technologies & social media into the traditional academic curricula & how to enhance student engagement & learning outcomes. I offer in-person &/or online workshops & consultingYou can also work with me as an independent teacher through any of the following services: 1. Personal branding coaching (my proven 3-C system to build your brand from scratch) 2.Live streaming consulting (from ideation to implementation) to grow your brand’s influence, authority, and community 3.Reinvention coach (from teaching to consulting).
EMOJIS - WHY ARE YOU NOT USING THEM? (PROPERLY) I have though about creating an Emoji "bible"... let me explain why! After seeing in the digital world so many people (including a lot of my friends and myself) completely confused and lost about the meaning of a specific Emoji ... or the crucial mistake of having add to a comment or tweety the "wrong" one and had to come back ashamed just to clarify: "I use this one in a completely different meaning!" Some research in the USA shows that emoji are often misunderstood and it could bring real problems in the communication between a pair or group of people interacting digitally. The first issue is related with misisterpretation of the emoji because when you pick an emoji, you think in a certain way that could be different in the mind of the receiver (cultural or contextual). The second one is technology - when the author and the receiver have different software system, they can visualize an emoji in a different way. So, I decided to spend some of my time and "learn" how to use emojis. And I am sharing with you! Keep scrolling and let me know your thoughts or leave your favorite EMOJI! Emoji is a japanese word and in the digital world, they are ideograms used in digital messages - it could be a facial expression, objects, places and flags, animals, weather, hands, etc. It has been used since 1997 with a set of 90 emoji but became popular in 2010. Now it is a large part of our culture and way of communicate đ&#x;˜‰
Have your heard of Emojipedia? đ&#x;˜˛ (astonished face)
Jeremy Burge created in 2013 and told "the idea came about when Apple added emojis to iOS6, but failed to mention which ones were new". Here, you can type anything and get the right answer before any mistake!
There is also a EmojiTranslate đ&#x;˜˛ (astonished face)
Helps you really understand that conversation! đ&#x;˜• (confused face)
There is an "World Emoji Day"
It was created by Emojipedia in 2014 and is held in 17 July.
Meet Lil Miquela - 1.5 million followers
Adopt an Emoji
Yeah, why not? Launched in 2015 by Emojipedia, the program was shut down in 2016 because of some confusion for users and advertisers. So to be honest there is an emoji for anything you want! And I have seen entire conversations with emojis (I am no expert but pretty good with emojis đ&#x;˜‰ (winking face).
Let's see some of Emojis
At Emojipedia you will find 8 categories: Smileys & People Animals & Nature Food & Drink Activity Travel & Places Objects Symbols Flags
Most Popular â?¤ Red Heart đ&#x;˜‚ Face With Tears of Joy Pleading Face Fire đ&#x;˜? Smiling Face With Heart-Eyes
đ&#x;˜Š Smiling Face With Smiling Eyes Smiling Face With Hearts Thumbs Up Thinking Face
About Candyce Costa A IDM
B2B Marketing & Social Media Expert, International Speaker and Founder and Chief Editor of Digital Business Women.
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Women in Tech Global Awards Foz Palace in Lisbon Portugal - 6th November, 6:30pm Categories Global Leadership Women in Tech Award Most Disruptive Women in Tech Award Women in Tech Ally Award Women in Tech Lifetime Achievement Award Aspiring Teen Award Women in Tech Start-Up Award Our international jury of experts Claire Rochecouste Michael Peters Melanie Perkins jager mcconnell Dr. Cara Antoine António Raposo de Lima Marcia Wieder
Miguel Fontes Veronique Forge-Karibian José Carlos Lourenço Michelle Tenouji Mahomed Ibrahim Elisaveta Nojkovska David Savage
Thank you to our partners: Startup Lisboa Câmara Municipal de Lisboa Portugal IN Rangle.io Vista Alegre Tom Bals Business O Féminin Nuno Matos Cabral Design Studio Register Here
Katerina Trajchevska CEO at Adeva.
Tell us about you and your business. I am co-founder and CEO of Adeva, an exclusive developers' network that partners with companies to scale their engineering teams. Our vision is to create equal opportunities for developers everywhere, no matter their location, race or gender.
How did you decide to start your business?
Did you always know that was what you wanted to do?
Both Tosho (the other co-founder) and I are engineers ourselves. When we graduated, we faced limited opportunities in our country - most of the job opportunities involved legacy projects with no growth potential. That's how Adeva was born, at first to create better opportunities for ourselves to develop and grow. We actually started as a development agency. Then, learning from our customers and their challenges, we iterated a few times until we decided on the model of remote staffing. Today, we're in the staffing industry for software engineering and we're passionate advocates for remote work..
Not exactly. It all came organically, solving problems, learning and growing. Until I realized I'm actually good at this and I need to double down on it. What's your favorite quote? I have two :) "The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now." and "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."
KATERINA TRAJCHEVSKA Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? I'd say it was when I decided to quit my job with only 6 months of working experience and start a business. Funny thing is, the pressure in such situations usually comes from people who care about you most. And who can blame them, right? I think the way to handle it is to simply trust your gut and take bold actions. Worst case, you can always go back to the safety and comfort of a 9-5 job. What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? Be more open. When we were starting, we wanted to solve everything on our own. And it was the biggest mistake that slowed our growth. Talking to others will give you so many different perspectives and an ability to learn from their mistakes instead of yours. Take advantage of it.
What did you learn from your biggest failure? The most important thing I learned from failures is that they are nothing more than new opportunities. They help you learn, improve and keep going.Thinking retrospectively, we failed a lot, but each of those failures inspired us to make a change and grow stronger. That's what brought Adeva where it is today. In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? This is a complex problem that should be addressed from a few angles. First, bringing more women to leadership positions and asking them to share their stories and inspire others to join our organization. Then, there's the uncouncious bias that has to be addressed to make the screening process fair and inclusive. And, finally, creating an environment where everyone can speak up and share ideas.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business? Lack of information. I believe that today, it's easier than ever to succeed as a woman, mostly because of all the communities and initiatives that grew in the last years. And, that's amazing. The problem is that a lot of women are not aware of the opportunities they have. How do you find inspiration in your life?
To me, inspiration means finding a purpose for everything I do. It helps me To what do you attribute your differentiate what's success? important from what wastes I don't think success can be my time. What's also helpful attributed to a single thing - it's a is limiting the information I mix of people, experiences and unique conditions that brought me consume to what motivates where I am today. I love the way me to do my best. I follow Malcolm Gladwell puts it in Outliers inspiring people, read a lot, - we don't create success on our own, it's a product of particular and limit my consumption places and environments. of daily news and anxietyinducing content.
WE ARE WHAT WE REPEATEDLY DO. EXCELLENCE, THEN, IS NOT AN ACT, BUT A HABIT. FAVOURITE QUOTE KATERINA TRAJCHEVSKA
Kathryn Rose wiseHer CEO/Founder. Â
KATHRYNROSE Tell us about you and your business. Kathryn Rose, founder of wiseHer, a technology platform offering ondemand expert advice for women in business, career and life. She is a serial entrepreneur, former Wall Street sales leader and author of 9 books. She has been has been featured in CBS Marketwatch, Fox News and more.
How did you decide to go into Digital Marketing and Coding? I started in tech by circumstance 10 yrs ago the financial crisis hit the U.S. and I was working on Wall St., they closed our division and at about the same time I gave birth to my first child and my mom had a brain aneurysm leaving her paraplegic. I had to reinvent myself so I landed in internet marketing, SEO and Social Media, from there I taught myself enough code to be "dangerous" and created wiseHer.
Did you always know that Digital and Tech was what you wanted to do? No way--I had no idea about anything in technology. I had been working in financial services for over 15 years at that point so tech was the last thing on my mind.
KATHRYNROSE Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? Yes, too many to count unfortunately. First, I was too young, then I was a mom, then too old, it's exhausting. But I just always think about my own daughter and I keep going to make a better world for her. What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? Don't let anything stop you. Relentlessly pursue your dreams. You can do anything, learn anything, be anything. To what do you attribute your success? Resilience and the mission, the fact that I don't let anything stop me. I just keep moving forward, little by little. With wiseHer we will change the world for women and that is what keeps me going. What's your favorite quote? "She stood in the storm and when the wind did not blow her way, she adjusted her sails"-Elizabeth Edwards
What did you learn from your biggest failure? The key to success is resilience. You have to be able to look at your failures as forks in the road, ones that can lead you down different paths. Failure isn't the end, it's just the beginning. In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? . Start by embracing the differences between men and women, ease the burdens of the mental load women face and stop expecting women to act like men. To what do you attribute your success? I understand how I'm wired. Knowing my talents, what I'm passionate about, what's important, and crafting a vision for my life aligned to those things is why I'm successful. I say no to things that don't align with my vision. I'm very focused on the goals I set that will lead to my vision being fulfilled. Helen Keller said the only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business? Our own limitations. We fight 1000 battles a day but the first one is in our heads. You can't make people accept you so go where you're celebrated not where you're tolerated. How do you find inspiration in your life? I look to those before me -- my grandmother and my mother. My grandmother was widowed at a young age and had to raise 3 kids on her own with little money. She went to work in the factories like a lot of women did during the war and saved and was able to send her kids to college and nurses training. Never complaining, always grateful. My mom is the same way.
SHE STOOD IN THE STORM AND WHEN THE WIND DID NOT BLOW HER WAY, SHE ADJUSTED HER SAILS. ELIZABETH EDWARDS FAVOURITE QUOTE KATHRYN ROSE
Kristin Sherry YouMap LLC, Founder and Managing Partner.
KRISTIN SHERRY Tell us about you and your business.
How did you decide to go into career coaching?
Kristin Sherry is a bestselling author, speaker, and managing partner of YouMap LLC. She is the creator of the YouMap® profile, a holistic self-awareness profile that uncovers client, employee and student strengths, values, preferred skills and personality-based interests. Her fourth book, Your Team Loves Mondays (… Right?) releases 20 Feb 2020.
I was certified in 2007 as a career coach within my company. I found the work meaningful and decided to do it full time. Creating the YouMap® profile was a complete accident. There was nothing in the market that did what I needed to help my clients, who were largely career changers. So, I created my own assessment product to better serve clients. Training coaches was also accidental. Coaches contacted me wanting to know where I got the YouMap® profile, so I created certifications to give them access.
Did you always know that coaching was what you wanted to do? Yes and no. I knew for a long time I wanted to work for myself, because my mother and father have both been business owners. I always thought I'd become an executive coach, like my mother. The problem? I didn't like it. I prefer shorter engagements where I facilitate a breakthrough for a client and then move on to the next. Executive coaching engagements are longer and I lose interest in routine.
KRISTIN SHERRY Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to pursue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it?
What did you learn from your biggest failure?
I was selected to audition for TEDx and blew the audition. I'm an experienced speaker and do well on the fly without preparing what I'm going to say. The TEDx format does not lend well to winging it. While I wrote out my talk and practiced it a number of times, I wasn't prepared enough. I guess I was cocky thinking I'd pull it off the way I've always done things. Don't rest on past success.
I have an IT background, so I'm used to working in a male dominated field. That wasn't easy. But my parents raised me to believe I could do anything, so they created a very driven and ambitious woman who doesn't exactly take no for an answer. Any time I'm knocked down I get right back up and think, "Is that all you've got?" My husband always say I do what I'm going to do. That's me. In your opinion, how could the What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what did you wish to know before started your career/business?
workplace/business environment do more to be inclusive for women? I think we need to be more proactive to address unconscious bias. The women in the room are often asked to take notes in meetings, or order the birthday cakes for colleagues. I also think we need to be intentional in having formal conversations around inclusion and equity instead of hashing out these conversations on social media. We need to ask women the ways they don't feel welcome at the table.
Find a mentor who has gone where you want to go. 80% of consultants fail in the first year. Of those who succeed, a small percentage are women. My mother is a consultant and helped with my services and pricing. And my mentor helped me evade imposter syndrome. Second, don't work for free! People don't value free; free clients are bad clients. Third, To what do you attribute your success? don't offer services you hate doing. Be great. What's your favorite quote? "If you don't design your own life plan, chances are you'll fall into someone else's plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much." -Jim Rohn
I understand how I'm wired. Knowing my talents, what I'm passionate about, what's important, and crafting a vision for my life aligned to those things is why I'm successful. I say no to things that don't align with my vision. I'm very focused on the goals I set that will lead to my vision being fulfilled. Helen Keller said the only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeeding in the workplace/business?
Not setting intentions to create an inclusive and equitable culture from the top down in organizations. We also must understand what adjustments need to be made in our organizations for all people, not just women, to feel welcomed and prepared to contribute. There are men who get defensive or angry about this topic, which shows we have work to do, yet. We aren't trying to take over. It's equity. How do you find inspiration in your life? My mother inspires me. She's 74 and still traveling and consulting with CEOs and their teams. I also find inspiration by taking time alone to ponder possibilities. I create time for ideating and envisioning. In this noisy world of 24 x 7 connection, it's important to walk in nature, mediate and just be. That's where my ideas come. And ideas are what inspire me the most.
IF YOU DON'T DESIGN YOUR OWN LIFE PLAN, CHANCES ARE YOU'LL FALL INTO SOMEONE ELSE'S PLAN. AND GUESS WHAT THEY HAVE PLANNED FOR YOU? NOT MUCH. JIM ROHN
FAVOURITE QUOTE KRISTIN SHERRY
Susanne Birgersdotter CEO and Founder.
Did you always know that Tech/Apps was what you wanted to do? That kind of drive and selfbelief was evident long before I became an entrepreneur. My father was a serial entrepreneur who owned hotels and nightclubs, and I quess that inside of me there was always an entrepreneur but I had no idea I was going into Tech.
How did you decide to go into Tech entrepreneurship? ‘My daughter was having trouble learning her multiplication tables,’ Birgersdotter told us. ‘Like any parent, I wanted to help her, so we started looking online for solutions, but we couldn’t find anything we liked. I thought, “Well, if you want something that doesn’t exist, you have to make it yourself.” So I decided to make an app that would help her.’
Tell us about you and your business. Susanne Birgersdotter, a Swedish self-made entrepreneur and author, shares her inspirational journey from designing her first app at her kitchen table to becoming one of the most influential entrepreneurs in Sweden within seven years. Susanne's keen instincts and intuition have helped her grow her companies including designing a #1 ranked app
Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? Yes many times, but I take 24 hours to myself and then get back on that horse again (against all odds). What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? Don't be afraid to take risks. Plan it all. Speak your mind. To what do you attribute your success? No feat is too small not to celebrate. I recognize and celebrate every achievement – big or small. And I also choose to celebrate it my own way. A deal closed could be celebrated with an indulging massage and spa, completing the annual reports can be capped with a weekend getaway, or hitting the sales target could mean an extra hour of sleep.
What did you learn from your biggest failure? The most successful aren’t those who haven’t met failure, they are the ones who have faced, struggled, and have risen back from it. Success comes after overcoming failures, not avoiding them. In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? Educate the Leaders. Celebrate Employee Differences. Creating an inclusive workplace is a work in progress, and engaging, interesting training that encourages employees to learn more about these issues is a great place to start. What's your favorite quote? If people like you they will listen to you, but if they trust you they'll do business with you.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business? Equal Pay— It’'s 2019, and women still make less than men. Role Models— There are few powerful examples of women role models in workplaces. Sexual Harassment— Women at all levels of employment and all levels of workplace are affected. How do you find inspiration in your life? Spending time with my friends and family. I travel a lot to meet other people in business and I get so much inspiration from them.
IF PEOPLE LIKE YOU, THEY WILL LISTEN TO YOU, BUT IF THEY TRUST YOU, THEY'LL DO BUSINESS WITH YOU. FAVOURITE QUOTE SUSANNE BIRGERSDOTTER
Tijana Momirov Startup Setup, Product Manager and Startup Consultant. Â
Did you always know that Computer and Sotware were what you wanted to do?
How did you decide to go into Computer Science and Software Engineering?
More or less :) I've always known that I want to be in a hybrid role between business and tech, but the industry has been changing so fast, that the roles we have today didn't even exist at the time of my graduation. But it's all a journey and it's good that it is this way.
Tech is a hot industry, we witness new disruptive applications being launched on daily basis. I was good at maths in school so I decided to proceed with getting a MSc in Computer Sciences. My organization and people skills kicked in, so after gathering engineering experience, I've moved to more of a big picture role of a product and project manager.
Tell us about you and your business. I am a software engineer turned project and product manager, with 12 years of experience, 10 of it fully remote. With StartupSetup, I help founders go from an idea to a software product, all in agile, lean, remote, freelance environment. As a nomad, I've traveled the world and joined various communities and events, also as a speaker or organizer.
TIJANAMOMIROV Have you ever been in a situation where you have felt discouraged to persue your dreams as a woman? How did you handle it? At 18 years old, when enrolling into the engineering program, I did receive many comments in the space of it being "too difficult for a woman". But later down the road, I can't say I've had any bad experiences. I guess once everybody realizes you've made your decision and you are serious about moving forward with it, you gain the deserved respect. What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in your industry or what you wish to know before started your career/business? You don't need to define everything when starting the journey. Be agile, assume, experiment, learn, go step by step. The world changes so fast, and the tech industry is one of the highest paced ones for sure. And you change as well, with every new experience and learning. Try getting involved in different communities and activities. Find time for side projects and collaborations. What's your favorite quote? Life is a journey, not a destination
What did you learn from your biggest failure? Right now I can't think of a single big failure, but there have been plenty of little mistakes and struggles. What I've recognized as a pattern is going after something that is "good on paper". Unless you have your own strong reasons, something that is just commonly viewed as a thing to do, probably won't work out for you. Talk to everybody, consider every tip, but act based on your own conclusion In your opinion, how could the workplace/business environment do to be more inclusive for women? It could help if the roles would be more hybrid and personalized, so that each professional can add their own touch. On many occasions, especially in tech, women might just bring in the missing piece. To what do you attribute your success? To my family that thought me to be honest and responsible and happy with simple things. The best way to do good business is not to care about the business (in terms of generating profit and consumption), but rather doing the good job, based on quality collaboration and kept promisses, and enjoying the ride.
In your opinion, what is the biggest obstacle to women succeed in the workplace/business? It's kinda vicious circle :) The biggest obstacle to women entering the crucial positions is not enough women on crucial positions. Whenever you stick out, you draw attention, both positive and negative, and both can build pressure. But the more we are, the less awkward it gets, and the more we can focus on the actual work. How do you find inspiration in your life? The inspiration is in the daily life, and without it the big life goals would look blurry and meaningless. The small learnings and achievements, ongoing curiosity, simple joys, especially when shared, that's what keeps us going. Life is a journey, as cliche as it might sound.
LIFE IS A JOURNEY, NOT A DESTINATION FAVOURITE QUOTE TIJANA MOMIROV
WEBSUMMIT LISBON 2019 D I G I T A L
B U S I N E S S
W O M E N
04 NOVEMBER LISBON INNOVATION & TECH EVENTS
Join us for a informal network with women from around the world! We are looking for people that want to be a part of the change. We will discuss new ideas and bring new light to existing issues as women in the tech industry. Why to attend? To network To relax and have a chat To learn as to what others are doing To build or to retain old connections
REGISTER FOR MORE INFO! AND JOIN US FOR A INFORMAL NETWORK WITH WOMEN FROM AROUND THE WORLD!
DIGITAL BUSINESS WOMEN eMagazine|
WONDER WOMEN EVENTS We love meeting our readers to get face-to-face with the wonderful women that we digitally engage every single day. Digital Business Women host amazing events including masterclasses, talks, panels & debates and summits. Most recently, we organized and support Women in Tech UK debates, Wild Code masterclass and debate, our own series of masterclasses and networking sessions. Now, we have decided to share our expertise and network and support your brand developement creating a range of events for you. We love bringing together like-minded people to discover what your brand is up to!
EVENT ORGANIZATION We love organising fun, lively and functional events. This is one very effective way to engage and build a strong relationship with your audience. We organize from masterclasses, networking to conferences. Contact us firstname.lastname@example.org
IWEE's Conference - Maldives WE PROUDLY SPONSOR We are still buzzing from excitement after IWEE's launching conference at Maldives last month with core team Gull Khan Mariya Ali Maheen Noor Soomro & our fabulous speakers including Dr Yvonne Thompson CBE FRSA Madeleine Black @PeterParker IWEE’s is committed to supporting economic, social and political empowerment for Asian women through fast tracking their personal & educational empowerment via turn-key conferences with follow-up programs, high quality training, coaching, mentoring and a global network of dynamic women. We strongly believe that on the road to empowerment & equality, women must join hands across borders as we are #InThisTogether We are very grateful to our partners & sponsors Butterfly Effects, Hope for Women,WOB Kurumba Maldives, @raajetv UNICEF Maldives, State Trading Organization Plc. Maldives Transport & Contracting Company Plc @BankOfMaldives Hummingbird Welum Denmark, Daughters of Change US, Ananke Middle East @digitalbusinesswomen Candyce Costa A IDM Sabin Muzaffar Marie SolaAlso very thankful to our male allies Husen Amr MD STO & Mikail- Member of Parliament. It was an honor to meet key officials including the Gender Minister, Economic State & Transport Ministers, Police Chief & other dignitaries. We look forward to continue working and making a difference in Maldives AND we are excitedly preparing for our next conference! The Conference “Awaken the Inner Potential Within” was held in the Maldives on 22-23 July 2019. The conference achieved its major objectives in empowering the participants, kick starting their empowerment journey with addressing: 1. How to overcome obstacles women face in their journey to leadership positions across the globe, 2. Bringing awareness to money mind-set and cash flow management, 3. How parenting affects how one operates in the workplace and personal relationships, 4. How to thrive after sexual trauma, 5. Importance of physical exercises that promote mind and body connection 6. How to navigate on promote one’s business on social media.
A live poll that was conducted at the opening ceremony which revealed that the number one obstacle in the Maldives that women faced was the lack of infrastructure to support women entrepreneurs and those who aspire to reach leadership positions.The importance of partnership with men was one of the main themes of the conference. To embed and promote this aspect IWEE introduced two male ambassadors at the conference who will serve for two years advocating and putting measures into practice that open doors for women to enter into leadership positions, lop their businesses and ensure safe space is created for them that discourages sexual harassment and other forms of bullying.With the focused attention of the new government to empower women and gender mainstreaming both government and the business sectors IWEE received full support through sponsorships towards the conference. IWEE partnered with Butterfly Effect, Hope for Women and Women on Boards. These partnerships provided a wraparound set of skills that participants can continue to access following the conference.
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CANDYCE COSTA: A SUCCESSFUL WOMEN IN TECH CASE STUDY When I had the idea to interview Candyce Costa instead of writing an article to Digital Business Women October issue I intended to give you, dear reader, the opportunity to be represented in a different way: asking her many things I was curious to know about but didnâ€™t have the opportunity. I also wanted to praise her for having me and many women in tech worldwide talents so well represented in an outstanding media. I knew her answers could be make me learn and think, but Candyce Costa surprised me again with her sincerity, value and knowledge. Iâ€™m certain that this content is going to be an useful content source for my women in tech PhD research and will make you think about improving personal and professional skills. I invite you to learn more about our inspiring editor history and thoughts.
Since you started working with women in technology empowerment and inclusion, what were the greatest achievements, changes and major challenges to be faced by them in recent years? Achievement is bringing this discussion to the table to get more and more attention until things could be really changed. Changes are that more and more women are owning their own voice to conquer their fears. Major challenge is giving the new generation a broader picture of what tech really mean sheding a light on the creative part of technology and that being a techy actually is really cool! You meet women in technology around the world. What are the main similarities and differences between them? For similarities, doesn't matter where they are, they have to face gender imbalance in their salaries, job responsibility and also to be taken seriously in the tech industry. The big differences are how easy is to access education and how to overcome family barriers.
What is the impact of your multiplatform activism on the inclusion, education and work of women in technology (from the youngest to those who have successfully established themselves in IT)? Could you give examples of how your magazine, YouTube channel, cross-platform content were a hit? The impact is that we are bringing real stories that inspire our followers doesn't matter what age they are - role models are always important in different stage in our life and knowing that we have someone to share and encourage while we walk our own path is gold! Most of our followers message me to say how valuable our content is not only sharing role models but also approaching a variety of tech and digital topics to help them navigate in their business and career. Most of our interviews are a hit because we have women from around the world and some of them are very senior or influencers in their area. Our 2 min pitch was also a hit and we are bringing back during the WebSummit in Lisbon.
Where did the idea of producing content about women in technology come from? What are your goals and dreams? I was looking to read more about tech from a feminine perspective and I could not found it. So I created! My big goal now is become a social enterprise and make money to be able to pay for the project. The dream is doing this for the rest of my life :)
What does success mean to you? What are your favourite characteristics and why? Success to me is being able to do what makes you happy and be financially stable. Characteristics? My favourites are being honesty, sincerity and kindness because most of people are looking to take some advantages of you all the time. When you find people that are honest with their actions, sincere with their words and kind with their attitudes, you hit the mark! Could you talk about the magazine's numbers and other content platforms related to women in technology you developed? what do you attribute this success and huge audience? Is there some work similar to yours in the world? We promote the magazine exclusively on LinkedIn and this is the 10th Edition (one special because October is my birthday, the 10th month and it is the 10th edition). We are launching a new website by the end of the year where the main focus will be content for members offering visual, written and videos and possible a monthly webinar - I've tried launched a podcast but due to my busy agenda, it was impossible so I am thinking bringing this idea back in 2020. I cannot find a similar magazine that I can compare what we do, so I believe we are the only one doing exclusively for female followers. The success is simple - smart and ambitious women are looking for this kind of content, professional and clever content hat resonates with themselves.
What were the most important experiences and knowledge you gained from interviewed women and authors of articles for your magazine and platforms? To see that no matter who you are, you struggle in life. Everyone has challenges that it needs to be faced. The most important thing is how you deal with them, what kind of mindset you have to overcome them and what you will learn from them. One huge learning experience is that a positive mindset is key to be successful.
You have lived in 4 different countries, speak 3 languages, have friends around the world, bought a house and a dog, live with my love for 20 more than years and have a son. How do you organize your schedule, your routine? Could you give some advice to women facing the same challenges as yours, also related to personal aspects? What makes you move forward every day? My biggest advice is to have a strong and positive mindset - even when impostor syndrome kicks, I will take 3 deep breaths, keep my chin up and move forward. I did not win all the time, I cried a lot in my life, had a lot of mistakes but I never gave up on my dreams. What makes me move forward? The believe that I can achieve anything...and of course, making my son very proud of his mum. I cannot forget my partner that is always by my side for the past 23 years.
You meet women in technology around the world. What are the main similarities and differences between them? For similarities, doesn't matter where they are, they have to face gender imbalance in their salaries, job responsibility and also to be taken seriously in the tech industry. The big differences are how easy is to access education and how to overcome family barriers. You are Women in Tech ambassador in England. Could you talk about the importance of groups like this for women in technology? Huge important because it is a community that knows your struggles, can offer support, knowledge and mentoring even if it is just a 20 min chat. You can find role models, people who will share their experiences, people who will help you to find a job or transitioning in your career, advice on how to balance family and career, all sort of topics that relate with you. My advise? Find a near group or an online one, register, engage (asking questions, sharing your opinion, etc) and have fun. Your passion is digital marketing. Do you intend to learn programming, new IT skills? My dream when I was 15yo was to be a hacker! One day I will learn programming even just for fun!
About Renata Frade Renata is a PhD candidate in Doctoral Information and Communication in Digital Platforms Universidade de Aveiro and Universidade do Porto programme. IÂ´m also a Portuguese and Brazilian entrepreneur who have been working, researching, developing and teaching Communication, Transmedia, Digital Marketing and Technology in the last 16 years inBrazil, USA and Europe. I've been working with NGO institutions as a volunteer and consultant since 2004, such as Girls in Tech.My PhD thesis is a new, disruptive and unprecedented research: building a organizational,communicational and transmedia of empowering and entrepreneurism model to helpwomen in tech become more representative with equal social and economic rights.Contact me:https://email@example.com@renatafrade
TACKLING THE SHORTAGE OF WOMEN IN STEM There are so many huge opportunities for growth and progression for people working in the technology industry. Having worked in the industry for over 30 years myself, I firmly believe now is the most exciting time to be working in this industry, and yet still so many young women don't consider it to be a viable career choice for them. Why is this? As it stands, just 24% of roles within Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) careers are held by women. According to a report by Engineering UK, the UK has the lowest number of female engineers of any country in Europe. This lack of representation of women in STEM is a longstanding issue. The number of women in technology make up just 17% of all those in the UK tech industry and according to the National Centre for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), women hold only 25% of computing roles within UK companies. How can businesses support women in STEM?
Enabling women to flourish in the UK workforce is worth a lot financially. According to research undertaken by the McKinsey Global Institute, gender parity in the workplace could add up to $28 trillion (26%) to the annual GDP BY 2025. There has been a huge increase in initiatives to tackle the gap and positively affect the number of women choosing a career in STEM, especially within the last 5 years. Whilst these initiatives are undeniably having a positive effect, especially in awareness, they havenâ€™t yet had the required impact to readdress the diversity balance. Benefits tailored to appeal to women
Employers also need to showcase that they operate a female-friendly environment, and provide reassurance that they adhere to a strong equal opportunities policy that clearly lays out how they are supporting work-life balance and equal pay Flexible hours Maintaining a work-life balance can be tricky. Women often juggle family responsibilities whilst looking to progress within their career. Many women in male-dominated industries find themselves taking a voluntary pay cut, to have time to spend at home. A working environment that is flexible to the needs of working parents will appeal to more women and encourage them to stay and progress in their career rather than to choose between work or family.
Higher salaries In the same way women feel they must reduce their hours to spend time at home, they also take considerable pay cuts in to maintain a balanced life. Women in Technology found that an alarming 25% of women in STEM want to negotiate a higher salary for their role, but feel they are stereotyped as willing to settle for less money than a man in their same position. Ensuring women can work flexible hours without being forced to take a pay cut is the key to businesses gaining and retaining a key part of the workforce. Opportunities for promotion Empowering women by offering promotion when it is warranted helps businesses to stand out as drivers toward STEM equality. Many women in the industry feel as though they need to change employers to progress in their careers, whilst research found that 40% of women in the industry have experienced being rejected for promotions that have been given to a less-qualified male. Encouragement from the beginning
Encouraging girls into STEM at an early age, at home and at school, is key to addressing the gender stereotypes that still exist. Currently, only 7% of students in the UK taking computer science at A-Level are female, and just half of all those studying IT and Technology subjects at school will go into a job of the same field, according to Women in Technology. Positive female role models are vital, so companies and organisations should ask their successful female employees to visit local schools to meet with students and share their experiences. Examples need to be set at the highest level. Itâ€™s never about talking and promising; itâ€™s about action and implementation. As more women are visible as examples of leadership, more women will be mentors to younger generations of women who will be encouraged and empowered to choose leadership paths. By sharing their personal experiences and successes, these female employees can inspire and encourage the students to follow their lead. Businesses can also offer work experience placements or internship programmes, specifically targeted at young girls who are interested in STEM, but who are perhaps unsure about exactly what a career in this field entails. Park Place Technologies recently sponsored an initiative in Ireland aimed at female college students studying STEM related subjects, who wanted to gain experience in the industry. The two selected candidates were given the opportunity to fly to our US headquarters for a 10-day internship programme, where they received hands-on industry experience as well as the opportunity to network with the senior executive team and go through a leadership training program Internship programmes are invaluable both for an organisation and students. For the students it gives them first-hand experience of the type of work involved with that industry, and for the organisation, it can be used as a recruitment process to identify future talent who could one day join the business once they have completed their studies. Prior to this a Park Place STEM committee was established in Q4 2018, consisting of a diverse group of women at Park Place, many of whom had no formal training in STEM. Women on the board of directors
Organisations need to honestly ask themselves how many women hold leadership positions within the company or will have the opportunity to do so in the future? If the answer to this is very few, then you risk losing the already limited number of talented women in your organisation to a more inclusive competitor. Here at Park Place, there are several high-ranking women who contribute to the leadership of the company. There is undoubtedly an appetite and acute awareness within the industry about the need to encourage more women into STEM. The media attention and various initiatives to support STEM diversity are helping to improve the situation, but this wonâ€™t happen without widespread industry engagement. There is clearly more work to do in changing outdated perceptions and unconscious bias and this is where employers can make a real difference -- by showcasing the opportunities available to women in STEM and ensuring access to the same opportunities for all. Employers have an obligation to immerse themselves in these initiatives, and where appropriate drive them to ensure that we are creating a STEM industry that is innovative, creative, progressive and diverse for future generations.
About Jennifer Deutsch As Chief Marketing Officer at Park Place Technologies, Jennifer leads Park Place’s marketing and communication teams with a focus on growing the Park Place Technologies brand as the global leader in data center third-party maintenance and support.Jennifer brings over three decades of marketing and brand development experience. She has spent time on both the client and agency side. Prior to Park Place Jennifer was the Founder, COO of Antidote 360 and EVP, General Manager at Doner Advertising. Her client side experience includes past positions at Marriott International where she served as SVP, Global Brand Management where she repositioned and optimized the Marriott brand portfolio. Jennifer began her career at Nestle USA as a Management Trainee and held several positions during her tenure at Nestle including Brand Manager, Lean Cuisine and Director of New Ventures for the Nestle Ice Cream Division. In her spare time, Jennifer is an avid cyclist and gardener. She is an active community member and on several boards including The Cleveland Film Commission, The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center and The Cognitive Health Institute. Most recently Jennifer co-founded and serves as Chairman of the Board of FutureVision, a not for profit organization founded in memory of her father, promoting medical innovation and the visual arts. Jennifer is a graduate of Columbia University in New York City and the proud mother of two sons.
Mental Health - Heads Together Heads Together is a mental health initiative spearheaded by The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, which combines a campaign to tackle stigma and change the conversation on mental health with fundraising for a series of innovative new mental health services. The Royal Foundation is rolling out a range of new mental health programmes to ensure that the right help is available to anyone seeking mental health support, wherever they are and whenever they need it.
EXPERTISE AS A PRODUCTIZED SERVICE The gig economy as an alternative to a classic career path With the gig economy booming, there is a way to take a path beyond the classic career one, by productizing your expertise, and then developing a business around that product. I'm a software engineer and I started my career as a Java developer. I was working in an office as an employee in the traditional way for three years, and everything was just fine. It’s just that just fine was not fine any more when I fell in love with windsurf and kitesurf. I wanted to be able to follow the wind and the sun and move around the best spots in the world. I wanted to wrap my work around my life, instead of the opposite. So here is how I did it, following an alternative path. Even though remote work and digital nomad lifestyle were barely existing terms back in 2010, I started freelancing, working 100% remotely and living as a full time nomad. When you have a goal and put your mind to it, the progress happens sooner or later. I kept landing projects and working. I was getting more and more experienced in my own field (programming), and also in freelancing itself: communication with clients and team members, selling my services, productivity and self-starting, multi-tasking and juggling projects and time zones, financial planning for the rainy days, investing in courses and always learning. In addition, I was getting more and more into the startup world, as those were the companies contracting me, rather than the old school 9-5 corporations. Even in 2010, the startup scene, as early adopters, was open to freelancing and remote work, as well as to any kind of experimenting in general. Soon I found out that many startups, presumably due to the limited budget, didn’t really have proper management in place. Usually a founder would contract just me and one or two other programmers to work on his application. No actual specs, management tools, planning etc. This is where my other skills and experiences came in handy. It happens that I used to do events management when I was in college, and so I knew how to deal with people, timelines, resources. I was pretty good at having the overview at all times, the big picture, the vision, the strategy. On top of that, as a nomad, I was good with people, as I keep meeting new people all the time. And so it turned out that I was the very much needed bridge between the business and the tech side. Plus years of experience with remote teams, while most of the people were just hearing about it for the first time. I’ve started thinking that I might just have a unique selling point to go with.
Meanwhile, the gig economy was getting stronger. The more serious companies joined, the remote work became a thing and we all started openly advocating it as the future of work. I started getting invited to give talks and share my experience. The coworking spaces started popping up. The networking events were taking place more and more frequently. The nomad hubs were forming in various locations around the world. And I was working on various projects. And I was talking to various people on all sorts of events. And at one point I was sure there indeed was a gap between the business and the tech side of new ventures. And in entrepreneurship, a gap is a niche, a gap is an opportunity, a gap is business. I was seeing founders with amazing ideas struggling to implement them, wasting a lot of effort trying to assemble and lead a tech team, prepare clear specs and plan releases etc., instead of being out there selling their idea and getting the money in. A recognized pain point plus a solution - means business. That is how I came up with StartupSetup where I help founders with their journey from the idea, over requirements specs and team recruitment, to introducing remote collab tools and efficient management processes. And finally launching their MVP, of course. This is exactly what it means to productize the expertise. In my case, that’s management as a productized expert service. And again, expertise is like any other product - you need to have a growth and investment strategy. It’s crucial to be able to balance between client work, networking, branding, learning new skills - upgrading and selling your product essentially. Here are the 10 crucial points to understand in order to successfully sell your expertise as a service: 1. Your superpower is actually the combination of your standard powers — but a combination unique to you. Each skill on its’ on may sound as a very common one to have, but combined they make for your unique selling point. 2. A resume is for an employee. As an independent expert, you need to make it clear which kind of problem you are dealing with, what your proposed solution is and, again, what your unique selling point is. 3. A resume is a list of ingredients. Customers buy ready-made products. 4. Think product. It’s a game changer. Everything is a product. Your expertise included. 5. There is work “outside of work”. Network, talk, ask, understand the struggles. 6. Smart businesses already identify their pain points on their own. Listen to them. 7. Expertise as a service (expertise on demand) is the future of work. At least get familiar with the concept. 8. We are all both service providers and consumers. Focus on what you are good at and what you enjoy doing. 9. It’s on you to adjust your services to the market needs. Never stop learning. 10. You are not an employee. As an independent expert, you need to be proactive from the day 0. More details on each on the points can be found at: https://tijanamomirov.com/how-to-sell-your-expertise-as-a-service/ It’s been an interesting journey, and it still is. And yes, an alternative path does exist :)
About Tijana Momirov Tijana is a software engineer, product manager and founder of StartupSetup where she helps founders start their startups, all in a remote, agile and super lean way leveraging the gig economy. She’s been a full time nomad since 2010 and loves blogging and giving talks about nomadic lifestyle, managing remote teams, future of work, the gig economy, productized services and more.
HOW TO BE A BETTER ENTREPRENEUR?
The entrepreneur is a creative, innovative person, marked by the ability to set and achieve goals. An entrepreneur is someone that develops ideas, using them to detect business opportunities and make moderately risky decisions. Entrepreneurs also create a new business knowing the risk and the uncertainty of the future, with the purpose of achieving profit and growth through market opportunities. Before starting a business, it is important that the entrepreneurs carry out a self-assessment, reflecting on aspects of their personality. Whatever is the business, you need to have an ever-present force: self-motivation. In addition to being motivated, it is necessary to develop some characteristics to succeed as an entrepreneur. Ability to take risks: Risks are part of any activity and we must learn to manage them. Risk means having the courage to face challenges, to dare to run a new venture and choose the best paths consciously. Know the business sector: The more you master the field where you want to start your business, the greater the chances of success. It’s great if you already have experience. If you don’t have experience, you need to invest in training courses, books, etc… Be organized: An entrepreneur must have a sense of organization and ability to use up the resources in a logical and rational way. The organization facilitates the work and saves time and money. Ability to make decisions: The entrepreneur must be able to make correct decisions at the right moment, to be well informed, to coldly analyze the situation and discuss alternatives in order to choose the most appropriate solution. This quality requires the will to overcome obstacles, an initiative to act objectively and confidence. Be a leader: The entrepreneur must learn to set goals, guide the execution of tasks, combining practical methods and procedures to encourage people in the direction of defined goals and produce a balanced relationship between the working conditions of staff around the enterprise. Good leaders tend to be people who are always adding something to solve a problem.
Have talent: The entrepreneur must have talent and a certain amount of dissatisfaction in the face of routine activities to transform simple ideas into actual businesses. Be competitive: For the entrepreneurs become competitive in the foreground they have to be open to changes that take place around the world and they also have to review paradigms. Have confidence: Self-confidence is an important factor in the entrepreneurâ€™s business, you can make the difference between your success and your failure. Possess learning ability: Disagreements and conflicts are necessary and even desirable. Without this, there will be no understanding, and without understanding you can only make bad decisions. Be sensitive to others. Be assertive and aggressive in relation to business when necessary. Have a tendency to trust people. Search continuous profitability. And be enthusiastic about your business. About Mary Henderson Mary is an internationally recognised Personal Branding & Online Social Selling Specialist. Mary helps Service Based Entrepreneurs, Startups, Business Owners and Corporate Executives commercialise their Personal Brand into industry experts. Mary has 18 years experience building 7 & 8 figure businesses & building high performance sales teams in the IT sector and 13 years delivering online solutions for large and small businesses. She has been featured in many publications and is regarded a thought leader in the digital sector.
Pivotal Moments Susanne Birgersdotter
While business and entrepreneurship came naturally to me, being the CEO didn’t. Leadership is an art –learned, nurtured, practiced, and mastered. Not many girls and women in our society grew in an open-minded and forward-thinking upbringing where gender is just a physical thing. Where girls and boys were not assigned to certain roles in life and raised to fulfil that role. Many of us were preconditioned to be a strong support person, a great secretary, an able mother and homemaker. Not to be leaders – presidents, CEOs, or innovators. This preconditioning, in society and in ourselves, that makes it harder for women in business to rise above the ranks. Not only are we fighting for the position, for the deal, or the recognition, but we are also fighting the stigma that comes along with being a woman in business. And while it is totally acceptable for men to be brutal and decisive in their business dealings, women are expected to be softer, kinder, graceful. But, when you start taking the kinder route, people will take it against you. It’s a loss-loss scenario. It seems. Stereotyping women in business have also been a ceaseless trial for me. Being blonde and attractive is not a plus when you’re in business and you really want to succeed. I have been mistaken for the secretary, the executive assistant, or the receptionist many times in my life. I have nothing against the position or the job, it’s just so off-putting to be automatically relegated to a certain position. Investors would take double the time to decide about putting up funds because they’re dealing with a woman. I have experienced awkward meetings when the people I’m talking to realized I’m the one in charge. Many people I’ve met in business were taken aback and have trust issues with a lady boss. They just prefer dealing with a man. No explanations are necessary.
CHALLENGES OF THE LADY BOSS Mistakes are magnified when a woman is at the helm. It is attributed to the womanly temperament, our indecisiveness, our willy nature. When a boss is enforcing a rule, she’s being bossy, he is firm. Lastly, a woman’s innate nurturing nature doesn’t align with the traditional image of a strong and effective leader. The mothering, kind, understanding, and supportive characteristics of a woman are not consistent with someone who can take an organization to grow and succeed.
Frustrating as it is, being a woman of business is also a rewarding and fulfilling career for me. I have faced and risen above many challenges. But, I’m also aware that there are yet to come. It is part of this journey. Here are some of the most common challenges a lady boss will encounter, and how I was able to overcome them; Women are just emotional creatures, or maybe men are just better at hiding theirs. When in business, it is important to hide your emotions – anger, frustration, aghast, happiness, love. Practicing on my poker face was hard, but it is an advantage not to show your true feelings in front of the competition, employees, or partners. Keeping my emotions in check –
Managing my communication style – Warmth and personal connection is great with friends and family.
But, when dealing with the people in the business, it could be construed as inappropriate. While I maintained my sincere and direct sense of communicating, I did refrain from too much smiling, touching, and personal references. I always felt so bad when I thought of offending somebody, letting them down, or disappointing them. Wanting to be liked is second-nature to most of us. But, being a boss also mean you'’ll have to fire someone, turn down an offer, point out a subpar work, or give unpleasant news at some point. Keeping things objective and true and making sure I’m on the same page with everyone is important. This avoids misunderstandings and minimizes bad feelings. Wanting to be liked –
Worked on my decision-making – Women are more likely to avoid risks than men and to get as many people into
the decision-making as possible. Collaboration and collective decision-making are great, but it can also delay the process that would mean missed opportunities or accumulated losses. Decision- making can be scary, especially if people rely on you to make the right ones. But it is also a key aspect of leadership and entrepreneurship. I enhanced my decision-making skills by anticipating important decisions. By doing so, I can prepare for it, research on all contributing factors and find better options. By the time I need to decide, I’m ready for it.
Being a woman entrepreneur is doubly challenging. You will not only have to fight the business side of things; you will also have to face the gender issues inherent in the industry. But, while women can't grow balls literally, we can do so figuratively.
About Susanne Birgersdotter
Susanne is a successful entrepreneur who started her journey in the comfort of her own home. She has had fails, challenges and success on her way and her insights into the world of entrepreneurship are valuable to entrepreneurs, women in tech and business people. In a male-dominated industry and business, Susanne offers a fresh perspective on entrepreneurship and how to juggle motherhood and business. Susanne is a respected businesswoman and was nominated for the Swedish Most Powerful Female Founder three years in a row and also most successful business woman of the year. Susanne Birgersdotter started her journey in her own kitchen when she decided to design a math app to help her daughter with school. Susanne has a passion for helping and supporting other women in the industry and wishes to empower and encourage the ones that need it. Susanne is author of the book “Pivotal Moments”. In her book Susanne shares her story on how she became a serial entrepreneur. The way to the top is never easy and contains many up’s and downs. These are the pivotal moments in our lives that shape us.
STOP BEING TERRITORIAL AND START WORKING TOGETHER! Stop being territorial and do not see everything as a threat (including other women). Being a wise woman nowadays means that you recognize your own vulnerability. And you reach out when you need to ask for help, support and once in a while, a glass of wine! We all know how hard it is to be at the top of the chain (any chain, any industry). Even harder is to retain your place that you have fought so much to earn. It took years to get where you are. So, I totally understand that your first instinct is to preserve what you have! Of course. Nobody knows exactly what it takes, how many hours, how many challenges, and what you had to lose to get where you are. You want to preserve your territory but I am telling you: if you share, collaborate and care, your actions will give you much more. Have you heard about karma? No, I am not that religious, but I believe in the law of attraction (quantum physics). The Law of Attraction teaches that we attract into our lives whatever we focus on - everything is energy and we are the creator of our own universe and our own reality. And energy is shapeable, formable and moldable. So, we shape, form and mold our energy that impact in our reality. Therefore, if you feel threatened all the time, you are frightened all the time. Being vulnerable is not easy especially if you have fought hard to get to the top. However, the top would be wealthier if you share the top with people who have your back, people who have been on a similar journey in life, women who will create and develop with you a safe place. Open up to new experiences. Be vigilant if it feels more comfortable for you but try not to just shut the door – I guarantee you that being alone is not enjoyable. Create a circle of women who understands you and vibrate with the same energy. They will be your safe place. And you will be happier.
Candyce Costa Digital Business Women Founder
KINDNESS HARDWIRED – HOW PHILANTHROPY IS PART OF OUR DNA When I first started developing the idea for an easier, friendlier payments system, I knew from the get-go that KogoPAY should be inclusive and philanthropic.
Fintechs are rewriting the story of payments and banking in so many ways. KogoPAY’s unique role in the Fintech story is to facilitate payments and simple money management for everyone. We’re about universal access to payment services, both nationally and internationally, about sending money home, running a small business and keeping control of your finances. According to data released by the World Bank 1.7 billions adults worldwide still don’t have access to a bank account. The ‘unbanked’ can be on a low income but can also be those who move between countries as migrant workers or have a poor credit history. The inability to obtain a bank account creates more problems and exposes people to debt and risky transactions. Sadly, these individuals are those most in need of secure money transfers – often they are sending money home to feed their families! For this reason, I wanted KogoPAY to be more than a conventional business turning a profit. Our success must be inclusive, and we must help people along the way. We are focused on using our innovative technology to empower and help others, both through the services that we provide such as international payments and our data analytics that help our customers manage their money. AI and data analytics can also be invaluable in helping governments understand the homeless problem and find different ways to offer support. Our plans include using QR code payments – already popular in Asia – to help small businesses take payment on-the-go. Imagine visiting a market stall where you can pay simply by holding the KogoPAY app against the vendor’s QR code sign. How convenient for the vendor to be able to easily see all the transactions they have made at the end of the day!
QR code payments work brilliantly for charity collectors and charities selling goods on the street. A simple QR code sign on a card, sandwich board or T-Shirt is all that we need to process payment from the customer’s phone. QR codes will be an excellent way to provide food, drinks and other items to homeless people in hostels and local cafes, either as part of their benefit or within a ‘Pay it Forward’ scheme. It would be easy for companies to incentivise their staff by giving them ‘Pay it Forward’ points as part of their bonus scheme. Our ideas for KogoPAY are constantly evolving and our philanthropic ethos is at the heart of our operations. We welcome new ideas to make KogoPAY better for everyone, especially those in need. Let's create KogoPAY- More than Just Payment ecosystem & Pay it Forward together !! QR code payments work brilliantly for charity collectors and charities selling goods on the street. A simple QR code sign on a card, sandwich board or T-Shirt is all that we need to process payment from the customer’s phone. QR codes will be an excellent way to provide food, drinks and other items to homeless people in hostels and local cafes, either as part of their benefit or within a ‘Pay it Forward’ scheme. It would be easy for companies to incentivise their staff by giving them ‘Pay it Forward’ points as part of their bonus scheme. About Dr Narisa Chauvidul-Aw Founder and CEO at KogoPAY Group and Smile MoneyMessage. Dr. Narisa Chauvidul-Aw is the founder of ThaiSmile Group. She studied at Triam Udom Suksa School before continuing to undergraduate studies in Accounting and Auditing at Chulalongkorn University and to a Masters degree at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) in the United States. She finished her doctoral degree in Accounting and Information Systems at London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in March 2003.Narisa used to work as a senior auditor at Coopers & Lybrand (now PwC) in Thailand for 2 years, a senior internal auditor at the Landmark Hotels Group in London for 9 years and working as a Finance Director for Siam Winery, UK (part of Red Bull UK) for 5 years . She also held prior posts as a full time lecturer to graduate and undergraduate students at Chulalongkorn University, in the areas of Financial Accounting, Managerial Accounting and Auditing, and part time lecturer at LSE and King´s College in Principle of Accounting and Finance.
WHAT HE SAYS
Please tell us a bit about yourself. My name is Jere Seppälä, 43 years old and from Finland. I'm a co-founder and the CTO (Chief Technology Officer) of Hookle Inc. I love travelling, which is one of my favourite hobby, and am lucky as I can combine it with my current business at Hookle. I used to be a swimmer in national level, thus swimming is very close to my heart. I love sports in general and my other hobbies include gym, badminton, running and bicycling.
Tell us about your journey to today. I've always been keen on technology and I studied computer science as my major in the university. I've now been a serial entrepreneur for a decade, but before entrepreneurship, I worked for multinational companies like Ericsson and Digia. I jumped in Digia when there were only 15 employees and was part of the team scaling it up to a publicly listed company of 1500 employees. Digia was the foundation for my own entrepreneur path, as there I was at first able to experience what it takes to grow a startup and later got to know how to scale up a business successfully.
INTERVIEW WITH JERE SEPPÄLÄ CTO OF HOOKLE INC.
The two-year journey at Hookle has been amazing. We founded the company in September 2017 and filed our first patent the following month. In 2018 we made a prototype of Hookle app to collect user feedback and tested the product and market fit. Furthermore, the prototype was a global showcase of Flutter technology (Google’s brand-new tool for building cross-platform apps). In January 2019 we closed our first funding round and started to develop the commercial app according to the user feedback collected earlier. Now we have just launched the app in October and will be soon ready to start scaling the business for real! Hookle is a mobile app for managing all your business's social networks in one place.
Big Challenges in Tech Industry in your experience. One of the biggest challenges in Tech Industry is to find and get best talents. Another challenge is to get your product/brand known globally.
In your opinion, how could the tech industry be more inclusive? I think to make tech industry more inclusive you must first understand why it isnâ€™t. I do not have a comprehensive answer for this, but I think education is a very good start and plays even more important role worldwide in the future. I see that initiatives such as Digital Business Women are valuable and want to be part of supporting them! The first woman joined the Hookle Team this August, and we'd love to get more to apply in the future!
As an Advocate, what do you think we should be doing more of to encourage more girls to consider a career in tech? We should maybe more fight against stereotypes about gender and intellect. Also, I think would be good to teach a growth mindset and the value of failure as that might help pursue career in tech. These are just quick ideas that crossed my mind.
To what you attribute your success? Hookle is a mobile App to manage all your social networks in one place.
I guess there are many factors that might attribute my success. However, I have always considered my leadership skills and being able to genuinely listen to people my biggest strengths.
What advise you can give to someone who is looking to follow your path?
I think it is extremely important for entrepreneur to understand importance of networking, be open minded and continuously innovative. Always try to be positive and remember; helping others leads to your own success!
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NICE GIRLS DON'T GET THE CORNER OFFICE: UNCONSCIOUS MISTAKES WOMEN MAKE THAT SABOTAGE THEIR CAREERS by Lois P. Frankel PhD Internationally recognized executive coach Dr. Lois P. Frankel teacher women how to eliminate unconscious mistakes that could be holding them back, and gives invaluable coaching tips that can easily be incorporated into social and business skills. The results are career opportunities women never thought possible and the power and know-how to occupy the corner office! Stop making "nice girl" mistakes such as: Mistake #13: Avoiding office politics Mistake #21: Multi-tasking Mistake #54: Failure to negotiate Mistake #82: Asking permission Mistake #100: Smiling inappropriately. These and other behaviors are why NICE GIRLS DON'T GET THE CORNER OFFICE.
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Virtual Reality Developer - San Jose, CA, USA
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PhD degree (or Masterâ€™s degree with relevant experience in academia or industry) in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Mathematics, Experimental Physics or related technical fields Software development experience in one or more common programming languages Background in computer and software engineering for Quantum computers (including Q programming languages, Q Error correction techniques, Q compilers and run-time systems, Q algorithms) Proficiency in algebra (vectors, matrices tensors, ket/bra notation)Strong analytical skills
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