AnitaB.org Austin: Technical Executive Engagement Program

On February 21, 2020, in celebration of Black History Month, AnitaB.org Austin partnered with Google Digital Coaches to kick-off the Technical Executive Engagement Program designed to engage and grow our local IT executive membership and become Austin’s premiere source of local executive women technologists.

What a memorable experience it was! We started the evening with our guests getting to know more about the AnitaB.org Austin Local Community year-round programming and one of Google’s latest ERGs, Bread Winners. Next, our guests had a chance to get to know each other better during our signature “Wine Down” Networking Dinner. The dinner was followed by an insightful panel discussion titled “Women in Technology Lessons Learned: Journey to Executive Leadership” and a hands-on workshop, “Coach Your Team to Success.” We closed the night with a tequila tasting.

Special thanks to all of our guests and the presenters for sharing their thoughts, experiences, and insights to help us grow! Our esteemed panelists and speakers shared their knowledge and lessons learned on four topics. The following are my highlights and some of our favorite quotes of the night:

Leading Others

You need to know your team. Consider learning more about Social Styles or the Strength Finder assessment to get to know them better and learn the best approach on how to engage with each of them. As a member of the team, you need to know what you want to do and where you want to go. This is your decision and responsibility; own it and ask for what you need.

Quotes:

“Be like a chameleon and adapt.” – Britta
“Implement a 24-hour cooling down period when dealing with conflict via email…don’t send it…pick up the phone.” – Karen

Serving Others

Britta volunteers to serve on the board of her alma mater. She told us when selecting a volunteer opportunity to make sure it is something we want to do. It should be fun. Traci is in the process of searching for a nonprofit board to serve on and plans to leverage the experience to prepare for a for-profit board opportunity when she retires. Ricki informed us that there is such a thing as dating nonprofit boards to find one that aligns with your interest. Shirley said not to worry if you can’t find [a non-profit you like], you can start your own. She and her mother founded the Round Rock Preservation.

Quote:

“Start your own nonprofit if you can’t find a board that aligns with your interests.” – Shirley

Sponsoring Others

The succession planning process should not be shrouded in secrecy. It should not be a secret if you are being sponsored by someone and the person sponsoring you should not be a secret. We are often told we need to own our career, so if we don’t know we are being sponsored for the next big opportunity then we might leave the company to grow and advance our career.

Quote:

“Mentors talk with you, coaches talk to you, sponsors talk about you.” – Traci

Coaching Others

When coaching your team to success, Vicky reminded us all that communication is critical. Everyone must be aligned to ensure the team is working towards achieving the same goal.

Quote:

“Don’t forget to communicate the strategy and plan to your team.” – Vicky

 

“Believing in Others” wasn’t on the list of topics, but I would say it was the biggest reminder and lesson of the night. We were reminded to always believe in ourselves and finish what we started no matter how long it takes or how difficult it gets. Believe it and you will achieve it!

We couldn’t have kicked off without you. Thanks for everything!

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