Our “Women in Tech” blog series places the spotlight on female employees in tech jobs who tell us about why they decided to start a career in software engineering, what they do at DocuSign, who their role models are and more. At DocuSign, we believe in the next generation of female leaders in technology and want to help them get on the right career trajectory. This week we sat down with Aida in Product Management based in Chicago to learn more about her career.
What is your current role at DocuSign and what do you actually do day-to-day in that role?
I lead a team of Product Managers within our Real Estate / Digital Closing vertical. I work with my team on setting roadmaps and delivering the right solution at the right time. I also oversee a scrum team which is focused on unifying our user base to one DocuSign Identity which means I get to work with my engineering counterparts daily to solve problems. I basically go from strategic product planning, to people development to discussing what API is needed for a specific story and yes all that can happen in a single day!
What did your kids or friends and family think you do?
My kids think I talk on the phone all day, play on my computer and boss people around! My friends believe I am some kind of IT project manager because they don’t understand the role of a product manager in software.
When did you choose to work in technology and why?
I stumbled upon product development during my first job out of college. I was a marketing specialist but was asked if I wanted to assist in a project redesigning the online user experience for reserving conference calls. From the start, the project was fun. I had the opportunity to collaborate with engineers and internal stakeholders (I was too green to understand the concept of talking to actual users at that point)! That project led to a transition, within the same org, to product development. I absolutely loved solutioning a better experience for users and seeing it come to life. I’ve been lucky to work in product software ever since.
What excites you most about working at DocuSign and why?
We are solving real day to day problems for Real Estate and Mortgage users. I love sitting with customers to understand their pain points, uncover problems they have and may not know they have and then collaboratively work with internal stakeholders to come up with the best solution to solve our customer’s pain points. Seeing that come to life is a great feeling. DocuSign provided our team the autonomy to make decisions on what to solve and when. We have a wonderful work environment that is truly collaborative. It also helps to work with customers that love our products!
As a woman in tech, do you have any role models in technology that you look up to? Who are they and why do you look up to them?
I most recently had the opportunity to sit with Kirsten Wolberg and learn about her career and life path. I appreciate how authentic she is and her journey to get to where and who she is today. She is my first female role model that I feel understands the journey as a working mom and also as a woman in technology who had the ambition to make it to the c-suite and, despite all her challenges, has achieved great success.
What advice would you give women who might be considering a career in technology?
Be your authentic self, SPEAK-UP, ask questions, admit to mistakes and learn from them, support your fellow female colleagues, educate your male colleagues about unconscious bias. You will most likely be one of the few women in the room, but don’t think about it. Finally, form a support group of females and males that support your journey whether it is to rise to executive level or be the best coder, product manager, etc.