Exclusive Trusted Magazine Q&A with Arti Sood, Technology Program Manager @ Yas Holding
How could you describe your career path in a few words?
“Upward, Evolving and Exciting” – these three words aptly describe my professional journey which I started way back in 2011. I started as an ERP consultant which gave me a very strong footing to execute and eventually lead technology transformation projects. Within 2 years of starting my career, I realized my true calling lies more in technology transformation advisory and program management roles and with this vision I strived to seize the right opportunities in my career.
During the span of 11 years of professional experience, I have been fortunate to work with a technology conglomerate in India (Infosys), Big 4’s (Deloitte & KPMG), and now with one of the largest Holding Groups in the UAE (YAS Holding). I also strongly believe in volunteering and giving back to the community and with this belief I continue to work as a Social Media Manager for PMI UAE after completing my PMP certification in 2018. Having worked and lived in 5 countries (India, Poland, China, Malaysia, and UAE), I can only say that one’s hunger to learn and grow should never cease!
What was your most challenging experience and it has changed your mindset?
One of the most challenging experiences for me was when I had to relocate to a completely different country (Poland) for work. Being the first time moving out of your home country to a place with no family and friends was intimidating as was exciting. However, with my family’s support and motivation, the move turned out to be smoother than I expected, and this experience made me more open to widening my perspective about everything in life. The move gave me great exposure to so many different cultures and made me realize how important it is to co-exist especially in the new global work dynamics.
When you get surprised by unusual or uncertain context, what do you think?
The only certain thing about life is uncertainty. And uncertainty knocks at our door more often than we would like. In such events what I do is take a step back, analyze the situation, list down the various probable solutions, pick the one that seems to give the best possible outcome and then work relentlessly towards it.
In all of this one thing that I truly believe in, and I try to incorporate in my daily life is to find positives (big or small) in any situation – this really keeps me going no matter how tough it gets!
What’s the key success factor for a female entrepreneur in cross cultural context based on your experience?
Being confident and optimistic about the solution/product you are offering is critical for a female entrepreneur. I believe these two factors are important for men and women both, however slightly more so for women as women often tend to have the additional burden of breaking biases. The third key success factor as per me is resilience. You must keep going until you achieve what you have set your eyes and heart at and only when you win, the race is over.
Based on your experience, what’s the key success factor for a female leader/manager?
As per me ‘Speaking Up’ is one of the most important things for a female leader. Being a woman leader myself, I understand women often tend to be more critical towards themselves as compared to their male counterparts, which leads to them not speaking up and missing out on sharing great ideas/solutions especially when in a larger cross-cultural group. In an article from World Economic Forum, 2021, it was reported that “Almost half (45%) of US women business leaders surveyed in June said it was difficult for women to speak up in virtual meetings on platforms like Zoom, while one-in-five women felt they’d actually been ignored on such calls.” - It’s time to change this together!!