Home Blog Advice January 2021 Finding your leadership mojo as a woman in tech


Finding your leadership mojo as a woman in tech

by Bettina Marson

Technology Product Owner

I am proud to work for a company that is focused on gender equality and actively recruits people from different backgrounds and walks of life.
I believe its Telstra’s commitment to diversity and inclusion that enables those of us in leadership positions to manage our tech ecosystems with a unique perspective and to great effect.
 
I’m happy to say that due to this support, I’m now in a position where I can lead comfortably and with confidence. Here are some of the lessons I’ve learned along the way about developing confidence as a woman in leadership.
Don’t be afraid of public speaking
Speaking in front of others scares a lot of people and can even deter some from taking on leadership roles. I think it's important to understand where that fear comes from: is it imposter syndrome or is it a fear of acceptance? For me, it was being afraid that I may not really know what I was talking about compared to other people in the room.
 
If you're just starting out with public speaking, practice by picking a topic you're passionate about and presenting it to a small group of colleagues or friends. This will help to build up your confidence. It’s also important to take the time to learn how to build a story, and remember you're trying to create a connection with your audience. Show them you value them by making eye contact.
 
Learning to speak up takes time and small steps to prove to yourself that you know what you're doing. One day you’ll absolutely smash it and realise ‘Wow, I had nothing to be afraid of!’ 
Join meetups and groups
To improve your communication skills, attend meetups and workshops in your field of interest. It doesn't have to be for women only, but from what I’ve seen, a lot of women are more comfortable at the beginning joining women-only meetups.
 
I think this is helpful for setting up a foundation in your community of work, as well as making you feel more at ease in general. 
Find your leadership style
My leadership style is quite democratic. I focus on building trust and delegating tasks while encouraging them to take ownership of their work. Although this approach suits my team, I’m mindful that what works for one team may not necessarily work for another.
 
It’s important to find a leadership style that's natural to you and leans into your personal strengths.

Tune into the team you’re leading and be prepared to adapt your style as appropriate. I believe this is the key to successful leadership in any scenario.
 
And remember that, ultimately, everything comes down to strong communication. When dealing with people who have different methods of doing things or ways of thinking, you just have to find the common ground. Uncover their pain points and then you can really set out to achieve your goals together.

Are you interested in joining the Telstra team? Apply for jobs or sign up for job alerts here. 
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