If there is anything the last year has taught us, it is the critical importance of resilience. It is with that theme in mind that we once again decided to celebrate International Women’s Day by talking with our team about the women who have inspired them, the advice they would give to women entering the data and analytics space, and beyond.
Resilience and role models can show up in many different ways, and the insightful stories from our team reflect a range of valuable experience, stories, and advice.
Which woman has inspired you the most in your life, and why?
“My two grandmothers, who went through war, personal tragedies with an incredible resilience and never stopped believing in themselves.” – Paris
“My aunt, who earned a PhD and pursued a career as a nurse practitioner. She's brilliant and has contributed meaningfully as an influencer for standards in geriatric care. And at the same time, she's fun and interesting, loyal to her friends and family.” – NYC
“My grandmother, who I lived with when I went to University. She was 89 when I moved in and I loved getting a chance to get to know her as a person for those last few years of her life. She taught me so much about living life to the values you have and appreciate all the blessings you have. She grew up with 10 siblings in a 2-bedroom house and as a middle child never had anything new, so her "make do and improve" attitude inspires me still to resolve problems and harness innovation (although she would have just called it "working with what you have").” – Dublin
“My grandmother - she is 94 years old and became a female engineer at a time when very few women even went to college. She faced extreme hurdles (commuting hours each way to attend class) and skepticism from her teachers and peers, but was able to build a successful career despite the adversity, all while raising 5 children. She is a world traveler and tells the most incredible stories. She inspires me to live my life to the fullest.” - NYC
Throughout your career, have you worked with a woman or women who had a particularly positive influence on you? If so, who and why?
“My very first manager in my first full-time job is a woman. I was a fresh graduate and she was really patient in training me and passing on her knowledge and experience to me. I think the way I train my team now is partly influenced by her.” – Asia
“I worked with an amazing woman in my last job whom always encouraged me to speak up and not be afraid to express my ideas. She helped me be more assertive and know my value.” – NYC
“I've worked at a company where my boss was the VP of the department. It was inspiring to see her so well respected and valued in the workplace. She balanced a challenging career with the demands of a large family, and that gave me hope I can do the same in the future!” – NYC
What's one piece of advice you would give women starting out in data and analytics today?
“Invest in yourself. Take time to build your skills and also to learn from mentors.” – NYC
“Don't be afraid to make sure your voice is heard. Your opinions, knowledge, and ideas will be valued, and there is never any harm is speaking up for what you believe is right.” – Asia
“You are your own worst enemy - do not let self-doubt inhibit your growth. It can be very intimidating and you will feel like you are not good enough, but allow yourself the time to learn and you will always surprise yourself.” – NYC
A Final Word
We appreciate our team taking the time to share stories about the women in their lives who have modeled resilience and inspired others to follow in their footsteps. In the video below, President & CEO Nancy Smith shared her wisdom with Bloomberg about the importance of female leadership in the tech space, and how we can inspire more women to pursue careers in the industry:
As a certified women-owned organization, we take our responsibility of stewardship seriously, and we look forward to continuing to open doors in the world of data and analytics for those who may have felt it was a world once closed to them.
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