Lessons From The Corner Office

Our previous women interviewees on breaking the glass ceiling, leadership, and making the right decisions

Alexandra Schless

NorthC Datacenters

“Being genuine is important for people to accept who you are. As a CEO, you can’t always be right, but you can help people in your organization to make the right decisions.”

Ivonne Valdes

Schneider Electric

“Don’t just focus on your current position-give yourself the permission to invest 30 minutes a week to read or network. I say give yourself permission because we are all busy, but you need to make time for your own personal development. It’s your career, so OWN IT.”

Barbara Comstock

Baker Donelson & Congresswoman

“We are fortunate to live at a time and in a region where the sky is the limit for young women. It is important to find the things you are passionate about and work with people and leaders who share your passion and vision.”

Jayne Stowell


“Refrain from making decisions unless you understand every aspect of a situation. It is important to understand what other people are thinking, their views, and how that fits in with what you are trying to achieve.”

Laurie Oswald


“While I am encouraged to see an increase in awareness and in programs like IM Women, we still have a long way to go. My advice is to stay true to yourself. Learn, ask questions, remain curious, and, most importantly, speak up!”

Maile Kaiser


“A significant action we can collectively perpetuate is giving younger women a track to find a promising, exciting career path. Each one of us can offer to be a mentor in our companies, schools, or colleges. I landed in this industry by chance, and I would like to make sure more women know it is a great career choice.”

Maud Texier


“At Google, we like to make sure that young women looking to join this industry do not feel there is a huge barrier to entry. We want to encourage young women to join this industry, join Google, and to be part of the change!”

Nancy Novak

Compass Datacenters

“I’m working on raising awareness and solutions for solving issues such as access to Internet, affordable equipment, and training and education around digital literacy.”

Nancy Phillips


“I would love to drive a message: ‘please participate in what I believe is one of the most dynamic, interesting and innovative spaces in business today.’ We are at the heart of how enterprises are looking at embracing technology and looking to partner with companies that are enabling their success.”

Patty Sewell

Sabey Data Centers

“The best gift that a future female leader can give to herself is to work in a culture aligned with her values. It is both easier and more enjoyable to thrive when you are surrounded by those who share your values.”

Shalini Sharma

Vantage Data Centers*

“I firmly believe that there is no distinction between what makes an effective leader-female or male. The skills every leader needs are vision, determination, and the ability to effectively collaborate while leading.”
* Shalini Sharma is now with Ping Identity.

Sharon Nakama


“Women are rising to the top, and the millennial generation is hitting the ground running, as they were practically born with technology in their hands. Companies need to recognize this and allow all hands and ideas at the table.”

Sonal A. Patel

Verizon Partner Solutions

“I believe in the mentorship motto ‘If you can see her, you can be her.’ There are so many opportunities within technology, and the more exposure in communities and media that young women can see will help spark curiosity to ‘be her.”

Shelagh Montgomery

QTS Data Centers

“As a result of living through acquisitions, bankruptcies, divestitures, and migrations, I know without a doubt that chaos equals opportunity.”

Teresa Carlson

Amazon Web Services*

“You won’t find a more exciting and transformative industry-and we need more women. Diversity among our workforce allows us to check our unconscious biases, look around corners, and challenge our own assumptions.”
* Teresa Carlson is now with Splunk.