Mandip Kaur

Early in my career, I learned that offering alternative ideas to traditional change methods was not widely observed (or encouraged) within the technology industry.

My first attempts at challenging the business value being delivered by change were roundly dismissed. I was repeatedly told “this is how we have always done things” or “do as you’re told and ask questions later”. I recognised that, right or wrong, my voice would not be heard until I had chalked up the experience in years to warrant the attention of my colleagues. My response was to build up my experience in technology, by becoming Oracle-certified and rolling up my sleeves to capture requirements, code, develop, test, release, support and advise. After a couple of years, I decided to build up my experience in business by running innovation workshops, advising on alternative technology solutions, driving strategy development, running design thinking sessions, and putting human experience and behaviours at the heart of everything I do when leading successful transformations.

I told myself that I want to be a different kind of leader from those I encountered early on in my career. I want to adopt a style of active listening, coaching, understanding and most importantly, demonstrating empathy. I want to be a leader who recognises that the world is changing faster than I can imagine, and embracing the ideas and challenges of new generations is the way to succeed. I want to support the women around me, to push them to grow, challenge, learn and help one another.

I started my journey based on a clear purpose I had set myself: to build experience, learn from younger generations and support women at every step of the way. I volunteered to work with children to understand how future generations think and will drive the way we use technology. I led a women’s empowerment programme to support women around me to help remove the barriers we unknowingly place on ourselves.

Now, I challenge my clients, my seniors and my peers to think differently, to question the value they can deliver and to explore options based on human-centric design thinking.

And that’s my story. My voice is now not only heard, but valued by those around me. As I have evolved, so has my purpose; to help others realise the importance of their voice and the voices of junior talent – because learning is everywhere.