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International Women’s Month 2024: Spotlight on the Women at ABBYY

March 28, 2024

As International Women’s Month draws to a close, let's look back at the fantastic women we highlighted throughout our March spotlight campaign on social media.

Throughout this month, we've celebrated the achievements, resilience, and leadership of the remarkable women who continue to pave the way for a more inclusive and diverse world, both on our team here at ABBYY and on Arsenal Women FC's team, a club which we proudly sponsor as their official Intelligent Automation partner.

First, let’s hear it from our colleagues:


If you could go back in time to your first day entering the professional world, what advice would you give to your younger self?

I wish I could actually do that! The best advice I could give my younger self is to embrace the uncertainty of the unknown and have absolute confidence to forge my own paths, even if it means venturing into uncharted territory. The professional landscape is dynamic, and innovation often emerges from the courage to tread unexplored paths.

While others may have expectations or follow conventional routes, there is immense value in challenging the status quo and carving out a journey that aligns with your passions, strengths, and aspirations. Trust your instincts and do what feels right for you.

Alicja, Director, Partner Innovation and Enablement


Honestly speaking, I could have never imagined myself in the tech world, but I am sure it was my destiny to get to where I am now.

When I entered the professional world, I was indeed just a child scared of everything. My biggest nightmare was making a mistake, not replying correctly to a customer's question, or saying something wrong. I am very grateful to my manager at that time for telling me that ‘it is alright not to know everything.’

It made me realize that in any workplace, you are dealing with people, and everyone can have gaps in their knowledge and make mistakes. The most important thing is to consider this a lesson: if you don't know something, learn more about it; if you make a mistake, try to fix it.

Maybe this will require the help of others; perhaps this will be a big deal; maybe you will not feel confident, and perhaps it'll make you uncomfortable. But never forget that every mistake is a valuable experience that will bring you to a new level of professionalism.

Uliana, Director, APAC Renewals


Embrace all opportunities with an open mind. Don't limit yourself to a specific career path, as you may discover new and exciting things by being open to new experiences. Be vocal with ideas or thought-provoking questions. Have a voice at meetings and be engaged. Accept help from those who are willing to support you grow whether it be through mentoring or introductions.

Overall, my advice would be to be open, be vocal, and accept help.

Bianca, Head of Global Sales Enablement


What advice would you give to other women aspiring to succeed in a leadership role?

I would advise them not to be afraid of anything.

There are so many things women might be afraid of: being ambitious; showing others how smart they are and how strong they are professionally; expressing their opinion in front of more experienced colleagues; sharing their ideas and fighting for their beliefs.

You might not be heard for some time, but eventually people will appreciate your professionalism and dedication and start taking you seriously.

I once heard that a colleague of mine said about me, "I didn't believe in her initially, but she is really cool." At that moment, I realized that I was on the right track.

Natalia, Sr. Director, Deal Desk and Fulfillment


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Our colleague, Sarah, and part of our ABBYY US team


The only constant in this industry is change. You should be okay with that.

Understanding the problem(s) that your company solves for its customers is critical to your success. Regardless of your role, your job is to make the life of those customers a little easier, one day at a time.

Lastly, this industry is still male dominated, but that should not discourage you. The tech industry needs women’s participation and welcomes it.

As women, we tend to care about more subtle (and more important) aspects of work, like collaboration and teamwork, culture and people, customer and employee experience.

These are great areas for you to learn, contribute, and grow even if you are paid to code all day!

Sarah, Director, Digital Marketing


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Our colleague, Tatiana, from our Belgrade office


There are two types of attitudes that could drive personal growth.

Either you can believe that talent and intelligence are inherent qualities, and everyone has a predetermined limit to how much they can grow, or you can believe that intelligence and talent are skills that improve with practice and effort.

People with the first kind of attitude obviously limit themselves.

Please, trust yourself; we can train any skill and grow wherever we believe we can. Don't let social stereotypes become your personal limitations.

Tatiana, Director, People Partner


For any woman aspiring to succeed in a leadership role, my advice is to be confident and believe in yourself. Don’t doubt your skills to lead; you have them, and they will only improve with time and experience.

Develop strong communication skills. Being a leader is all about managing and negotiating with people, including upline managers.

Continue learning and improving yourself. Take initiative in your own career growth, seek out opportunities for advancement, and always be prepared to seize them when they arise.

While striving for success, embrace your femininity. Despite the challenges of tough decision-making and need for resilience, remember that inherent qualities of kindness, empathy, and compassion are valuable. Navigate the path of leadership by embracing your natural strengths.

Natalia, Head of Global Accounting and Reporting


If you could give one piece of advice to young women aspiring to pursue a career in technology, what would it be?

Flexibility and an inquisitive mind are important traits in the technology industry.

On the one hand, you will need perseverance and real interest in each task, so you can sit down and figure things out even when almost nothing is clear from the start. On the other hand, the ability to quickly abandon what is no longer needed and turn in another direction is also key.

Another important skill to develop is effective communication — you need to have the ability to convey thoughts clearly while also listening to others.

I recommend being open, unafraid to make mistakes, asking as many questions as you need to, and being okay with abandoning some ideas. Additionally, developing a collaborative spirit and continuously seeking opportunities for learning and growth are also crucial in navigating the dynamic landscape of technology.

Julia, Head of UI/UX


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Kristin and part of the ABBYY team at our 2024 Sales Kick-off event in Barcelona


Tech is a male-dominated industry, which can be daunting at times, but don’t be afraid to assert and advocate for yourself.

Be confident in what you have to offer and have the courage to take risks in order to achieve your goals. Women are great communicators, so use that to your advantage; this is especially valuable during hard negotiations.

Lastly, step out of your comfort zone. By doing so, you will reach heights you never even thought were possible to reach.

Kristin, Sr. Director, US Sales


Read classic literature; you'll learn important lessons in morality and kindness. It will teach you the values of respect, sincerity, love, justice, and compassion.

Don't overlook Mathematics. Maths isn't just a science; it's a unique language that sharpens your ability to think critically and reason logically. It is closely intertwined with physics, geography, geology, chemistry, and biology, sociology, and economics. A deep understanding of mathematics enables you to generalize and prioritize, analyze and organize, identify patterns and establish cause-and-effect relationships, reason and draw conclusions, and think logically, strategically, and abstractly.

Keep expanding your knowledge and learn to advocate for your viewpoint.

An Armenian proverb that resonates with me is "To be willing is only half the job." Will and determination are key, but overcoming indecision is only the beginning for achieving excellence; the rest is hard work.

Tatiana, VP, Project Management


In what ways do you see the landscape changing for women in tech in the future?

The future for women in tech holds immense promise and potential.

When we say 'women in tech,' it’s important to acknowledge that there are many career paths that women can follow in the industry that do not necessarily require hard IT skills, such as developing or coding.

Women in leadership positions or other career paths such as Human Resources or Finance are shaping the future of tech by bringing their diverse perspectives into the programs and initiatives they drive for their companies. These diverse perspectives generate many benefits, such as better decision-making, increased innovation, and even decreasing gender bias in AI. Companies will, in turn, be able to develop products that meet the needs of a broader range of customers.

Empowering women in technology across all career paths will lead to a more successful tech industry – one in which women are equally represented and voices are specifically sought out for their expertise and perspective."


Annette, Sr. Director, People


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Annette and part of the ABBYY APAC team at our 2024 Sales Kick-off event in Barcelona


In your view, how can we all help make workplaces more inclusive?

“To help make workplaces more inclusive, consider your interactions as opportunities to build community. Are you creating safe spaces where there is active listening, are all voices welcomed and encouraged to contribute?

Diverse perspectives lead to better decisions, more ideas, and more innovation. According to McKinsey, companies in the top quartile for Diversity and Inclusion are 25% more likely to have above-average profitability.

Need some ideas? One way you can help build welcoming spaces for all gender identities is by sharing your pronouns and checking with others about what pronouns they use, whether that be in your LinkedIn page or company email signature.

Acknowledge and honor your colleagues that may be celebrating different holidays than you – such as by asking what meals are included in their traditions. After all, food is a love language that we can all speak.

Participation from every person is necessary to make progress towards more inclusive workplaces.”

Brianna, Digital Communications Manager


Shifting gears, we dive into the perspectives of Arsenal Women FC players. These incredible athletes not only dominate the field but also serve as role models for young girls worldwide. Through their words of encouragement and perseverance, they ignite a flame of inspiration, urging us all to changemakers and pursue our dreams with unwavering determination.


What does it mean to you to be considered an inspiration to young girls around the world?

It means so much. To be able to inspire young girls all over the world to want to achieve their goals and show them that they can do so, there’s no better feeling.

When I see people walking around with my name and number on the back of their kit, it’s very surreal. It shows how far the game has come and it’s amazing. It also shows young girls and women that it could be them in the same position one day.

I always say that it is an absolute privilege to be able to inspire people. If I can help someone even a little bit, then I know I’ve done half my job.

Beth Mead


What message do you have for women who may doubt their abilities or feel limited by societal norms?

Keep going, take what you’re doing step by step and remember to enjoy the small moments – whether that be in a sport or in anything you do in life.

We’re seeing more and more young girls and women achieve their goals and societal norms are constantly changing due to people breaking down the barriers. It is so important to me that we have a society that represents women, and you could be the change that someone wants to see in the world, so keep persevering and know that you have the ability to achieve whatever you put your mind to.

Kim Little


In what ways do you hope to inspire the next generation of female leaders, both on and off the field?

We need to continue to mirror those in society for women and young girls and part of my role and responsibility is to continue paving the way for them. I want them to believe in themselves and have the confidence to go after whatever they are passionate about but with that, they need to see that their dreams are achievable and have role models to look up to.

One of my aims off the field is to continue to protect and facilitate a future, a safe future, for women and young girls to be whoever they want to be, not just necessarily in sport.

Leah Williamson


As we draw the curtains on this month of celebration and empowerment, let’s carry forward the invaluable lessons learned, and the inspiration gleaned from the women who inspire us with their leadership and resilience.

Join us in our mission to foster inclusivity and diversity at ABBYY. Learn more about #LifeAtABBYY and explore career opportunities on our careers site and learn more about our impactful partnership with Arsenal Women FC by visiting our dedicated page.

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