The Best Advice: More Wise Words from 2017’s WIT Leadership Award Nominees

In the spirit of Women’s History Month, this blog is part of a Women in Technology (WIT) series honoring women doing amazing work across technology roles and organizations.   As we move towards WIT’s May 11, 2017 Leadership Awards event, we are featuring real life stories and insights of women who are rising, leading, and paving the way. 

This year, from our Women in Technology 2017 Leadership Awards Finalists, we have a rich treasure trove of “Best Advice I’ve ever received.”   As began in an earlier blog post, today we continue with some diverse insight from our Finalists.  Enjoy these snippets of advice….


Padma Chitrapu  Director, Advisory Services at Neustar (Technical Leadership category)

A mentor at a WIT Mentor program early in my career told me to focus on doing the work to the best of my ability and not to worry about who gets the recognition. I took this advice to heart and became the “go-to person” on every project I was involved in. In many ways it freed me to become an active learner and thrive instead of worrying about whether I would get the credit.”

Sara Clark  Microsoft (Unsung Hero category)

“Remember to keep your head down and keep working, no matter the situation.”

Shantrell N. Collier Department of Justice Management and Program Analyst Email and Collaboration Services (Unsung Hero category)

“The best piece of advice I have ever received was to treat others with the same level of respect that I expect. It is important to accept people for who they are, without bias, regardless of individual differences.”

Babs  Doherty Founder and CEO, Eagle Ray, Inc. (Corporate Small Market category)

“Be yourself because everyone else is taken.”

Rebecca Douglas Unanet VP of Finance and Administration (Corporate Small Market category)

“On the occasion of his 50th Anniversary, my Grandfather told me that the secret to his success is to “know your weaknesses, learn from your mistakes, and use your pain to drive your passion towards your goals.” I keep this piece in mind daily and it has helped me really keep focused on my goals and to not sweat the small stuff.”

Annu Singh Advisory at CSC (Unsung Hero category)

“Pay it forward. Always strive to make a positive difference where ever you can no matter how small.”

Yassi Sheyesteh Senior Director, Cvent (Technical Leadership category)

“I asked my manager what type of a leader I should be, and his response was “just be yourself”. It is important to observe & learn from others yet become your own version of a successful leader.”

Annette Rippert Senior Managing Director, Accenture Technology North America (Corporate Large Market Sector category)

“The best advice I’ve ever received is to find your passion - find that career spark that lets you do something you love.  I love a challenge.  I love helping a client achieve something they knew would be tough.  I love learning and I’m passionate about technology.  I have found a career that has always been fast paced, constantly changing and personally rewarding.  My work is never work – because I do something I love.”

Carmen Radelat, Universal Service Administrative Co. (USAC) (Corporate Small Market category)

“The best piece of professional advice I’ve received came early in my technical career from a mentor who advised that success not only depends on always performing your best but also requires cultivating and maintaining key relationships with peers, sponsors, and the leaders that surround you.”

Linda Powell  Chief Data Officer at Consumer Financial Protection Bureau  (Government category)

“Always make your boss' job easier.”

Tami Moore  Head of IT Project Program and Portfolio Management at SWIFT (Corporate Mid Market category)

“Slow down!  When I was a relatively new manager I wanted to prove I was worthy, so I put all of my time & energy into delivering on the "what".  A wise member of my team advised me to make time for things beyond the work stuff:  Make some time for chit-chat; Ask about family & talk about mine; find out what people did over the weekend, etc.  Being a leader is about a lot more than hitting the next deliverable.”

More great advice coming in our next blog post….

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