A woman's inherent ability to multi-task and multi-think makes her well suited for leadership roles, according to Wendy Cofran, CIO at Century Health Systems. Cofran spoke with SearchCIO at the recent CDM Media CIO Summit in Boston. In this video, she enumerates the attributes that help drive success for women in IT leadership roles and explains why it is important they surround themselves with the right peers to advance their careers in the technology industry.
What tips do you have for women in IT leadership roles, or those who are looking to move up into such roles?
Wendy Cofran: [It is important to] love what you do. Women bring a different skill set to the technology industry.
You're starting to hear a lot of discussion around having to understand the business, being able to multi-task, being able to see things from different angles quickly and how to fail fast. I think women are really good at doing that. If you think about how women's lives are typically structured, it's worrying about many things at once. That's a mindset that translates very well into technology. You can focus on a problem, you can put together a team and you can also think of outside areas where this could be useful.
I think they bring a good dynamic and it's starting to be recognized throughout the industry. Women are gaining a lot of respect and we, as women, have to lose the self-doubt. It's a place where it's still hard to do, but it's really ... important to find yourself with the right group of people. Surround yourself with the right company with the right people who are more about sharing the ideas and the purpose of the business, and is less focused on an individual. Companies tend to succeed when they have that collaboration.