Optimizing Your Career Path in a Remote Workplace
Remote and hybrid work is here to stay. For many women that’s been an upside of the pandemic--we’ve won the argument that flexible work arrangements don’t hurt productivity. But many women worry that less time in the office means less visibility, and thus fewer opportunities to advance. Plus, an ‘always on’ workplace can magnify the threat of burnout.
Drawing on the latest research on women’s career paths and insights from expert coaches and business leaders, this panel will address the skills and practices you need to thrive in an ongoing virtual/hybrid workplace, from creating connections with mentors to articulating your goals and needs clearly.
This panel is a project of the Women’s Business Collaborative: Women in Technology Action Initiative and is free to all.
Melissa V. Abad, Ph.D., is a sociologist at the Stanford VMware Women's Leadership Innovation Lab, where she leads its intersectional leadership research agenda and examines the career trajectories of women of color in the technology and finance sectors, She also collaborates with the Seeds of Change program, which trains and supports young women in STEM as they move from high school and college to successful technology careers.
Current projects include: Latina leadership in the U.S.; how organizational practices sustain racial and gender inequality; and how labor market contexts influence the civic engagement of college-educated professionals.
Abad completed her Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She also holds an M.A. in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago and an undergraduate degree in Sociology from Northwestern University.
Syamla is currently the Director of Production Engineering for the Monetization space at Facebook, which includes Facebook Ads, Marketplace, Business Integrity and Business Platform. Prior to Facebook she held leadership roles at Dell, Qualys, Risk Management Solutions and Fidelity Investments. She was recently named one of the top 100 Women of Influence by Silicon Valley Business Journal (2019), Finalist as Ally of the Year Awards (2020), Leadership Excellence in Technology Award by National Diversity Council (2020), and one of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Technology by National Diversity Council (2018). She was also a winner of Top Women in Cloud (2016) by CloudNow, as well as a finalist of Women of Influence (2017) by EWF. She is a member of Forbes Technology Council, 2020 SheLeadsTech Ambassador, EWF (Executive Women Forum) Ambassador and is on the Advisory Boards for various startups and a nonprofit. She is deeply passionate about driving diversity initiatives, both within the company as well as in the industry. Syamla pursued her Masters in Information Technology (thesis pending) at Harvard University and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering. She is also recipient of the Gold Medal from Nagarjuna University, India.
Ms. Maxwell-Thompson is a Board Director, nationally recognized thought-leader, published author, and innovative strategist with over 35 years of experience in executive level management in corporate America and nonprofit organizations. She has a proven track record in successfully directing and managing engagements for multi-billion-dollar companies across the financial, manufacturing, technology, and professional services sectors. Viola is a results-driven, conscientious leader with excellent problem-solving skills who draws upon her expertise in strategic planning, business development, and fiscal management.
Ms. Thompson is CEO Emeritus of IT Senior Management Forum (ITSMF), a national organization committed to the continuous professional development of Black senior-level technology executives. For 17 years, Ms. Thompson leveraged her vast experiences in program management and career development to lead the transformation and evolution of ITSMF into a leadership development organization that successfully prepares Black and Brown technology professionals for the executive suite.
Prior to joining ITSMF, Ms. Thompson was a partner with Ernst & Young LLC, where she specialized in organizational development and technology implementation. For almost 20 years, she led diverse teams that blended strategic- problem solving with state-of-the-art technology solutions to enhance operations for Fortune 500 companies in the manufacturing, financial services and consumer products industries.
Ms. Thompson received her B.A. from Lake Forest College in Illinois and holds a certification in Project Management. She is an appointee to the Board of Advisors for AboveBoard.com, and serves on two non-profit boards.