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HCL helps profile top female execs via Straight Talk magazine

HCL helps profile top female execs via Straight Talk magazine

 June 13, 2019

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Straight Talk is an award-winning thought leadership platform, sponsored by HCL Technologies, which showcases the experience-based insights of CIOs, CTOs and other senior technology executives. Recently, a special women-focused edition was published, Straight Talk Special Issue: Women in Technology Stories of learning and leadership from senior women technology leaders.

As part of this this special edition, Straight Talk profiled, Daniela 'Dani' Allen, Vice President, IT Applications, Price Chopper Supermarkets. Dani shared some interesting insights.

Discussing work and life balance, she said: "It can be difficult for women moving up through the ranks, especially if you’re raising a family and working with mostly males who may not understand the challenges you face. Over the years, I haven’t always been able to attend all the things that my children were doing. And, juggling work and life like this, there have been some accidents along the way.

"I think I always tried to make up for my shortcomings in the home in other ways. If I couldn't attend important events, I would always try to make up for it afterwards. 'Tell me about your day,' I’d say. 'Go through the scenarios with me. Read your speech just to me.' That kind of thing. So my family knew they were still special to me.

"It's the same with people at work sometimes. With a workforce of 50 or more, you can't give everyone all the attention they need and deserve at one time. So it's important to create special opportunities when you can. In this and other ways, there are a lot of similarities between work and home life."

Commenting on her career choice and progression, Dani added: "I started with Price Chopper while I was still in high school. I worked many positions in the store, from cashier to cashier trainer to office clerk, while I attended college. In 1987, I started my career in IT as a help desk teammate. I liked working with support systems and was later approached by a female leader who invited me to take the programming trainee course. I hadn’t studied programming, so I said, 'I don't think so.' She replied, 'I think you can do it, and I think you should try.' So I did and that’s when I started down the programming path in IT."

"When it comes to equal opportunity for women in technology, I think we're still a little behind. It's still predominantly male, although there are clearly more female leaders joining the ranks than when I started. To these newcomers I say, 'Get out there and play with the boys.' Try it, even if you’re told that the boys are better than the girls. Don't believe what 'they' say. You can be just as good, if not better. But you have to get out there," Dani continued.

Shining a spotlight on perspectives from technology executives

Straight Talk is a multi-media forum for the peer-to-peer exchange of experience-based insights among senior technology leaders. The aim is to help professionals find solutions, drive business results and advance their careers.

HCL Technologies states: “We launched CIO Straight Talk magazine in 2010 in order to shine a spotlight on perspectives that technology executives have distilled from their professional experiences on how to develop and deploy technology in order to leverage information, launch new products, meet customer needs, and otherwise drive business results.”

In addition to the magazines, Straight Talk offers interactive webinars and live events held around the world; monthly Tweet chats; online communities for technology executives and a content-driven website.

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Disclosure: Where Women Work researches and publishes insightful evidence about how its paid member organizations support women's equality.

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