IQVIA Celebrates International Women’s Day 2019
Christine Rogers, Director, Corporate Communications
Blog
Mar 06, 2019

International Women's day IQVIA

International Women’s Day is a global celebration to highlight the social, economic, cultural and political achievements for women. This year’s theme is #BalanceforBetter—a call to action for accelerating gender balance. IQVIA is proud to have thousands of talented women as part of our innovative workforce--doctors, nurses, data scientists, IT specialists and so many more who are an integral part of our success.

We asked some of our female colleagues to share why this day is important to them, what woman most inspired them, and what career advice they would share with other women.

 

suneela Thatte

Suneela Thatte

Head, R&D Solutions, India

Why do you think it’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day? 

The world we live in is full of diversity and that brings much needed balance. The corporate world is no exception to this and International Women’s Day is a great occasion to remind ourselves that we can only build winning teams by promoting balance and diversity, by bringing together individuals who bring unique and complementary strengths to the table.

Who is a female leader or mentor who inspired you and why?
I joined IQVIA as a young manager and my first line manager was Dr. Narges Mahaluxmivala, who was then in charge of IQVIA operations in India. She was an industry veteran with several years of experience. I owe a lot to her as she taught me how to play to one’s strengths, how to communicate effectively, how to handle difficult situations and how to build effective teams. The most important thing was the way she led by example and I try to do the same now, in my own way.

What are the attributes that you think have helped you succeed in your career?
My passion for my work has been a great driving force for me – it made me accept new challenges in my journey as a professional. I also believe in standing up firmly for what you aspire to do. This has helped me in navigating my journey and the difficulties that came along!

What is the most helpful career advice you received?
I have been fortunate to have received the guidance of many great leaders and one thing that I have engrained in my working style through interactions with them is insistence for excellence. I believe in giving everything my best. The other important advice that I have always held close to my heart is the power of teamwork.

Any advice you would give young women who are just starting their career?
Identify your strengths and areas of improvement and work on both – so that you are able to build your “brand equity” as a professional. Also, it is very important that you find mentors who will help you in your professional journey as they will help you do course correction as needed.

 

Kelly Little

Senior Director, Flexible Resourcing, Singapore

Why do you think it’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day?
I think it’s important to acknowledge that it can be challenging for women to succeed in the workplace for a variety of reasons. International Women’s Day is an opportunity to reflect on what we need as a community and to also celebrate success.

Who is a female leader or mentor who inspired you and why?
My sister and my current boss. I admire women who can successfully balance work and personal goals, who are calm under pressure, objective and solution focused with a healthy dose of confidence.

What are the attributes that you think have helped you succeed in your career?
I think self-awareness, empathy and critical thinking skills have been the most useful and the most transferable in my experience.

What is the most helpful career advice you received?
To have a 3-5-year career plan and to articulate that plan to your manager. Think about what skills you want to gain. The most successful women I have met have a clear vision of what is important to them and where they want to go. We can’t expect others to help us on the journey if we don’t know where we want to go!

Any advice you would give young women who are just starting their career?
Spend some time evaluating what is important to you personally and professionally and whether your chosen role will fit with those drivers. Also consider what a given role will bring to your skillset before you jump into opportunities.

 

Nancy Dryer

Chief Scientific Officer and Senior Vice President, United States

Why do you think it’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day?
It’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day to share your experiences with others in the hope you will inspire and be inspired.

Who is a female leader or mentor who inspired you and why?
My mom. She was an independent thinker who enjoyed life and was active and engaged with life and loved ones until the end.

What are the attributes that you think have helped you succeed in your career?
I’m tenacious.

What is the most helpful career advice you received?
Just do it. Don’t listen to the people who tell you it can’t be done.

Any advice you would give young women who are just starting their career?
Take an active role in charting your career. Think about good places to work and good people to work with. Every assignment should be an opportunity to learn some new skill or to develop your talent, not just a paycheck.

 

Nynke Driesens

Director Project Management, Project Leadership—Gastroenterology, The Netherlands

Why do you think it’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day?
It is important to realize and address the fact that there are still big parts of the world where women do not get similar chances on education or work as men.

Who is a female leader or mentor who inspired you and why?
I could list a lot of famous and inspiring women, but I think ultimately it would be my mum to begin with. She taught me that it is important, specifically as a woman, to be able to take care of yourself, in every way possible.

What are the attributes that you think have helped you succeed in your career?
Well, day-care for my daughters to begin with, but also working in an environment where there is no difference made between men and women.

What is the most helpful career advice you received?
First, if you really want to achieve something, you will simply need to work for it. Second, make certain you enjoy it, if not, choose something different!

Any advice you would give young women who are just starting their career?
See previous bullet- work hard, be kind and amazing things will happen!

 

Marcella Midea

Marcella Midea Vieira

Director, Business Operations and Capabilities, Brazil

Why do you think it’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day?
I think it’s important because, although I am part of a corporation with many women leaders and have been raised with the same expectations as my brothers and try to divide all the “domestic” activities with my husband – we must recognize that, unfortunately, this is not the reality around the world.

Who is a female leader or mentor who inspired you and why?
It might sound a bit cliché, but my mom was a nurse who raised three children in a very different society from the one I live in now. She was the only one of her sisters who graduated from college. She raised us with very limited support and yet she accomplished her career dreams. When I think of her challenges, my journey gets a different perspective. Family and work balance are important, but much more than time spent, it is about who we are, what we want, and the legacy we want to leave.

What are the attributes that you think have helped you succeed in your career?
I have always tried to see the perspective of others. This is important since as a CRA I was interacting with study coordinators and now I interact with senior leaders. I was once told by a leader that relationships are always 50/50, and I really believe in that.

What is the most helpful career advice you received?
That I should understand my own individual values and goals. If I am true to myself, I can have better control of challenging situations, relationships and drive my journey forward with purpose.

Any advice you would give young women who are just starting their career?
Respect who you are and remember that our most precious thing in life is our time, so put your heart in everything that you do, make every minute count – the opportunities will come!

 

Nicola Hall

Senior Vice President and General Manager, Switzerland

Why do you think it’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day?
It’s always good to have a day like International Women’s Day to remind us to pause from daily business and reflect on accomplishments and celebrate but also to be clear on where improvements are needed and to commit to actions. While many of us may feel the benefit of empowerment and the ability to achieve whatever we set our minds to; the same is not true for all women globally. As a mother of a young daughter, I feel the extra importance of ensuring she has every opportunity open to her.

Who is a female leader or mentor who inspired you and why?
I have had the benefit of inspirational mentors and leaders both male and female throughout my life and career. Some of the most inspiring women (and men) are those who manage to drive their career ambitions while maintaining a good focus on those things that are important to them for example family; kids; sporting prowess!

What are the attributes that you think have helped you succeed in your career?
Strong network and collaboration have been key in an organization as complex as IQVIA. No one can know everything. Also, some hard work, a bit of luck and a willingness to embrace change.

What is the most helpful career advice you received?
Work out what you’re good at and what you enjoy doing. Make sure you are in a role that leverages that. It drives motivation which in turn results in success.

Any advice you would give young women who are just starting their career?
Read Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg. It’s a book that has relevance at any stage of your career.

 

Megan Ford

Senior Director, Business Development, Australia

Why do you think it’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day?
I particularly like this year’s theme of balance for better and building a gender-balanced world. I have been so fortunate to grow up and live in a world where women have equal rights and this day is a celebration of this.

Who is a female leader or mentor who inspired you and why?
I know this is very corny, but my mum has always inspired me. She was a teacher and she worked from college until she reached retirement about 10 years ago. She has a beautiful caring nature and always tried to help my sisters and I understand there are two sides to every story. She is active in the community, gives her whole heart to everything she does and leads by example that you need to be kind to others and yourself. This upbringing has always served me well and inspires me to do the same. My mum inspired me to believe in education, working hard, looking for adventures, seeing new countries and cultures and having a laugh…. you can’t ask for much more in a female leader.

What are the attributes that you think have helped you succeed in your career?
Being determined, hardworking, thinking outside the box, having a positive outlook, caring about the people you work with and being open to try new things.

What is the most helpful career advice you received?
Never say no to an opportunity. Women want to have all the skills to take on a new role but if you open yourself up to the possibility you can learn along the way, it opens up a whole new world. I have taken roles I thought were beyond me but with the right people around you, you will succeed.

Any advice you would give young women who are just starting their career?
It is important to network and have a hunger for knowledge. Ask questions if you don’t understand, look for opportunities to learn about all aspects of the business and seek out a good mentor who you click with.

 

Dr. Deepa Desai

QA General Manager, India

Why do you think it’s important to celebrate International Women’s Day?
My personal belief is if a woman believes that she is equal to a man, then why do we need a separate day to celebrate ourselves? Why can’t we celebrate every day the beautiful me? But then maybe we are using this day as a platform to showcase that very equal-ness.

Who is a female leader or mentor who inspired you and why?
My mother! She has been a luminary in my life who has been my guiding star always. She was a home maker turned small to mid-size business owner (entrepreneur) turned physician. We both studied medicine together! Me at 19 and she at 58. She always lived her life. I guess I learned that this is one life and if you live it well, then one is all you need.

What are the attributes that you think have helped you succeed in your career?
Never ever give up. If plan A fails, try plan B, C…we have 26 letters in the alphabet!! Take complete ownership of your actions, always. And don’t forget to learn from everything and everyone, always. Life is teaching. Be open, be receptive.

What is the most helpful career advice you received?
One, in the corporate world, you are good only until the last good job that you did. Two, never say “No” the first time since a yes can be converted to a no, but a no can never be converted into a yes. And you would never know what was existing beyond that closed door…

Any advice you would give young women who are just starting their career?
Yes, one key thing in life, which I took time to learn--#BalanceforBetter is about striking a balance both, from the inside and outside. The inside being the personal and the outside being the professional.

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