Have you ever wondered how the inspiring woman you know or follow got to the position she's in now? And what skills she had to possess to land this position? In the new blog post series "Stories of professional women", I am reaching out to professionals in the exact area and getting insight on how their career journey looked like.
In the first series edition dedicated to women in Tech I've interviewed three professional women who are in charge of Project Management, Software Engineering or Agile practices. Why did they decide to start their journey in Tech and what's their inspiration today? Let's hear them out!
Michaela is a Femme Palette mentor and Technical Project Manager at Red Hat.
I started my project management career in Moravia (RWS) where my role included the capacity planning, budgeting of the translation resources and task management. My interest in the project as a method or way for achieving goals brought me into the position. The project consists of all essential milestones for successful deliveries.
I had a drive for achieving goals, confidence asking questions, and genuine support of a team. What did I have to learn? Project management methods such as Prince2, Agile and various courses covering project management technologies. I always combine multiple resources (certifications, webinars, articles, workshops, etc.) to find the best match for individual cases.
Some colleagues helped me along with my professional experience just being there. In most cases, I was an observer. This is a great skill also for project management. I do have a mentor for my program management skills now. And for the drive for success, I can share names: Michelle Obama, Dorie Clark or Madeleine Albright. But I'm not focused on one person. It is always bits and pieces combined into a bigger picture.
My inspiration is the job done, and lessons learnt. I gain experience and knowledge after each task, project or failure. With the next thing, I feel more confident, and it becomes easier for me. I get a feeling of progress towards my and team's goals.
I do enjoy the cooperation in the team and within the organization. It is always a great experience seeing different perspectives. And meeting new peers, understanding their personalities feeds my psychological "me". Having a team where you have fun, and you are looking forward to the next working day is luck which money can't buy.
Zoey is Software Engineer at Oracle (NetSuite product)
I started my career in Tech before even finishing my master’s degree thanks to standing out in the GPU programming class. The Software Engineer position I have now got my attention based on the offered salary.
From the very beginning my main focus was on computer graphics and image processing (CUDA, OpenCL, C++, etc.). As I was moving into the current position of Software Engineer, I had to learn Java and other high-level languages and frameworks.
My main support and inspiration came from my manager and teammates as part of the onboarding and our common teamwork.
Currently, I'm in the process of moving into a different company which is closer to my specialization, so I'm looking forward to the change and embracing it.
Anonymous professional woman
Subject Matter Expert and the Agile Chapter leader at IBM Client Innovation Center
My Tech journey started many years ago by me enrolling into the technical university and organically taking any tech-related job coming my way. While working on my master's degree in Telecom, I started working part-time as a Customer Service Representative, which gave me an opportunity to boost my communication skills and learn a lot of other soft-skills, that are needed not only in professional life but also day to day life. Slowly I was building up my CV, by taking other not so well paid jobs and, most importantly, not giving up.
Starting with 0 skills and real knowledge, the most important lesson I’ve learnt was not to be afraid to embrace the challenges and be able to take any failures as lessons.
I always looked up to my senior colleagues and tried to replicate their best skills. But the main driving power always was and is the will to be a better professional every day and to provide my clients with excellent service.
The biggest inspiration for me is positive feedback from my colleagues and clients, and nothing can make me happier than getting a "Thank you, it's a success" after delivering a finished project to my clients.
Are you thinking of progressing your career? Do you think of developing within the Tech industry? Check out the Mentoring Program in IT and move your career to the next level.