My interest in supporting women and accelerating their place in professional roles is deeply rooted in my own personal experience.
As Cologix is presently celebrating its 10th anniversary, it is a good opportunity to be reflective – to examine the role of women in the technology sector and to recognize Cologix’s enablement of opportunities for women and how that aligns with my own advocacy for women in leadership.
Throughout my career, I have had a front-row seat to observe challenges the technology sector presents in the inclusion of women. As a result of these experiences, I am a firm advocate for women in technology. Even more so, I am an advocate for women in corporate leadership roles. I have experienced the dearth of women in leadership roles and the negative impact that has had, and I am committed to changing that. My hope is that my actions and the actions of others in the tech sector will enable a different world for my two daughters and the many other career women to come. I am committed to a world where women and men not only have the same opportunities but where women’s abilities are understood to be essential for a successful business.
I have seen the technology field become more inclusive of women throughout my career, yet women are still underrepresented, especially in leadership roles. We need to encourage more women to explore technology as a career, to seek leadership roles, and to support conversations around gender equality in work environments. And we need to provide a flexible workplace in which women can not only be present, but also thrive. Over the next 10 years, I expect the perception of women as leaders to continue to evolve. Women have become more confident about how they can contribute to the success of an organization and how that contribution makes an impact. Particularly in the past year, in this time of uncertainty during Covid, women have demonstrated tremendous leadership capabilities and characteristics that are essential for long-term business success: resiliency, adaptability, inclusion and collaboration. Many of these traits are associated with an engagement style of leadership, in which the leader fosters respect for others and builds a culture where creativity and collaboration are cultivated and encouraged. I am confident women will continue to build from their success over the past decade and that our unique style of leading through engagement will be recognized for the positive results it delivers.
Cologix: 10 years of family-centered values
As Cologix celebrates its 10th anniversary, it is important to me to share how Cologix contributes to the advancement of women. One of the reasons I joined Cologix was because of the company’s inclusive leadership and culture of openness – both of which promote the empowerment of women professionally. In addition, five out of eight of Cologix’s executives are women.
I am proud to be a leader and a team member at a company where the majority of the executives are female and where internal advancement, diversity, collaboration, and flexibility are prioritized.
At the last New York Times’s New Rules Summit, Georgene Huang, women’s advocate and CEO of Fairygodboss, highlighted how companies need to collect and act on data around important differences impacting women, such as the way their personal lives and responsibilities can create tension with their work. I believe Cologix understands this, as it has always worked to facilitate a flexible culture and workstyle that puts family first, which in turn supports many women and their lifestyles. For instance, Cologix’s flexible time-off policy prioritizes the employee and their family, allowing them to easily take time off work for family reasons. Additionally, Cologix offers a unique professional community that creates a feeling of belonging. This sense of community both encourages women to stay with Cologix and encourages new women to join our growing team. Cologix’s culture and community enable women to feel a part of a team, to be recognized for their impact, and to have the opportunity to both lead and move up within the organization.
Mentoring and advocating for women
Throughout my career, I have learned how mentoring and building a network can help elevate women professionally. I believe women in executive and senior leadership positions must not only act as role models, demonstrating the behaviors and mindset that contribute to successful leadership, but should also offer mentorship and actively create opportunities for other women to grow.
In addition, I believe leaders must connect with women at all levels of the organization. My goal is to be available to help women throughout their careers and to help them make connections to further their knowledge and relationships – both inside and outside their organization.
“Sharing what you have learned and connecting women with others who can help with their development contributes to ensuring that the next generation of women is capable, informed, and successful at leading at the highest levels in the tech industry.” – Page Haun
Through connections we can create a supportive community that propels women forward, enabling their capabilities and proven results to be seen, and encouraging women to take the next step in leadership roles.
Women will continue to excel and evolve as engaged leaders. We thrive in inclusive communities that value respect, collaboration and flexibility. By building a diverse work environment, valuing engagement, fostering trust and collaboration, and embracing new ways of working and leading, women in tech will drive results at a pace that we have not seen to date.
As my colleague and friend, Laura Ortman, talked about in her last blog post, our motto at Cologix is “Together We Win.” This means that we win together, we learn together; we depend upon each other and we are stronger because we operate together. We leverage our combined creativity and knowledge and as a result are able to be more successful, enriching our company and ourselves. And for me, this applies not only to the Cologix family but also to my community of female professionals.