I was able to sit down with Dawn Welch who is the Manager of IT Licensing and Asset Management for one of the largest gaming technology companies in the world. In this interview we talk about two main points, what has Dawn found works best for her in the constant balancing act of having a family, a spouse, and a career at the same time, as well as, her thoughts on what it takes to be a female leader within the heavily male dominated IT sector.
In order to maintain that “balancing act” to have it all as a senior level women Dawn talked about the importance of having the support not just from your family but your management. In order to be able to have the balance in your schedule it is key to have open communication with your management so there is no confusion on your family dynamics. In order to be able to have a long lasting career with a family at the same time, it is critical that you and your manager are on the same page, so when you do have those special family events that come up you can leave to attend them without the feeling of guilt. With that said, this may mean you have to put in some late hours at night in order to keep up on your work load and maintain that balance.
Another unique topic Dawn was able to provide insight on was what she has found to work for her after being in the IT sector for over 20 years. This is quite the feat since it is well known that the IT industry is predominately males, especially in the past, and as Dawn states there are many occasions where she is the only female in the IT meetings. When asking Dawn about the progression she has seen over the years for female leadership in this area and what she has found to work for her as she has progressed over the years through the IT sector, she talked about two main points. First, communicating with the males on the same level and making sure that you are knowledgeable about the technology so you can have those conversations on the same level so they know that you are there with them on the same playing field. The second was to make sure you get their support and buy in on any projects that you are working on and to work hand in hand with them as equals.
Dawn provides great advice on how to maintain the constant struggle to balance your family with career and some great pointers for other females out there to take advantage of the opportunities that lie within the IT industry.