An interview with Mayda Lim, Head of Technology, Service Delivery for ANZ
Launching our Women in Technology series, Gurj Sandhu, our Director of Technology & Contracting from Morgan McKinley Singapore recently met with Mayda Lim, Head of Technology, Service Delivery for ANZ to discuss her experiences as a successful woman in Technology.
Tell us about your career to date:
My name’s Mayda Lim and I have more than 17 years working experience in all aspects of managing technology life cycle. I’m passionate about driving innovation and digital transformation to create value and for keeping the lights on for ensuring the effectiveness, reliability and resiliency of the organisation’s technology solution for the business.
What is your definition of success?
I define success as the entire team celebrating success together.
What accomplishments are you most proud of?
I’m from a hard core infrastructure background, however in the last few years; I have managed to transform myself into a digital, savvy fintech expert.
What has been the greatest challenge(s) in your career and how did you overcome it (them)?
Technology is a male dominated the industry. Statistics show that women make up less than 30% of the worlds entire workforce. Therefore, for me as a woman to continue a technology career has been challenging at times.
I can’t say that I have overcome these challenges; I’m forever taking small steps to navigate through this “maze” by actively engaging supportive mentors and sponsors in seeking advice and feedback. It’s important for me to continually evolve and develop and learn from others in negotiating male dominated environments in order to succeed.
If you had advice for your eighteen-year-old self, what would it be?
Follow your passion and challenge every boundary.
What is the most valuable advice that you have been given?
Passion is the engine for action.
In your opinion, what are some key challenges for a female leader and how can they overcome these?
Women are commonly faced with “sticky floor and glass ceiling” challenges. Both obstacles have low mobility and they often find themselves unable to navigate in their career. Women are expected to work a “double shift” where they are expected to do household work in addition to their wage labour.
These challenges have been present for years and we don’t have one immediate solution to change this, of course. However, the culture of diversity and inclusion will help to move the needle by providing an inclusive environment for everyone to perform at their best and progress their careers.
List three key words to describe yourself:
Resilience, organised and hard working.
As a leader, who is your role model and why?
I have many role models in my professional life. If I have to choose, then my ultimate role model is Monique Villa, who is the CEO of Thomson Reuters Foundation and Founder of TrustLaw and Trust Women. She has been ranked among the world's 100 most influential people in Business Ethics by Ethisphere. I look up to her as she is passionate about the female diversity agenda and taking pragmatic actions to solve these issues.
What else would you like to acheive in your career?
I would like to promote the women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) as a mainstream topic.
The disparity of women in STEM related fields has gotten worse. While women make up nearly half of the workforce, yet the percentage of females pursuing careers in STEM has dipped with time.
As STEM related industries on a while add over 1.7 million jobs in coming years in the digital economy, there continues to be a notable absence of women.
Data from Computer Science Organisation indicates that women now represent 47% of the workforce, as previously compared to 38% back in the 1970s; however, only 12% of engineers are female.
The society is progressing into digital evolution and I strongly believe that this is a vital process to engage and empower women and girls to contribute to the digital muscle.
Name two/three things on your bucket list?
To work and live in a 4 seasons country and to sponsor an elderly nursing home
Do you have any final pieces of advice for women looking to progress in their career?
“To be yourself”. She has to be authentic about herself in order to progress.
Must read book?
Lean In. This is a basic working manual for everyone.