What Six Ad Tech Women Would Tell Their 18 Year-Old Selves

What Six Ad Tech Women Would Tell Their 18 Year-Old Selves

In celebration of women in media, and hindsight, we had a sit down with six senior women at ad retargeting firm AdRoll to nab some pearls of wisdom.

Emma Mackenzie
Posted by Emma Mackenzie

Any of these sound familiar?

Michelle Filo: human resources director

I would have told myself to slow down.

I was pretty ambitious and hungry in my career early on. I was very career-oriented and throwing myself into my work. Now being a female with children and having a strong senior career in HR, I should have slowed down and really get to understand personal and professional brand and how I could have influenced my opportunities to coach and mentor managers around diversity.

Also, don’t be the first to put your hand up and speak. Instead, allow people to offer up their suggestions and allow everyone to have a voice and feel like they’re included and part of the solution.

Stephanie Hsuing: vice president of finance

Be a little more self-confident and take on more risk. My friends and I always talk about entering new jobs feeling anxious and feeling like we’re not able to perform. And then coming out the other end having done well and not knowing why there was such a disconnect going into the job.

I think it’s that self-confident side of no matter how well you’ve done to date and you’ve gone through a rigorous interview process and probably earned the right to be there, still not having the confidence to own it from day one.

I wish I could have known this when I was younger.

Stephanie King: general counsel

Be empathetic. I would try and teach myself empathy earlier. If I had it earlier, I would be a lot less stressed in my position and about what I can and can’t control.

I think my younger self in a legal role, having empathy is important. We may be really frustrated when someone comes to us, but we have to understand the journey they’ve been on. I would hope they would show us empathy too.

Cat Prestipino: marketing director JAPAC

I would tell myself to leave my boyfriend! From a career perspective though, I would say, you can’t change the way other people behave but you can change how you behave.

It’s taken me a really long time to understand I can’t change what people are going to do. For a long time I really wanted to try and control everything. But you can do what you can do. At the end of the day, you give it your all and there’s nothing more you could have done.

It would have been really great for me within my career to have that piece of advice.

Denise Wyer: head of sales

I don’t think my 18-year-old self would have listened to me. But if I could get her to listen, we’re hungry and ambitious to move up the ladder, just calm down a little bit.

Understand how much you have to learn in the role that you’re in and understand you’re never going to go back to that role again.

If you jump too quickly, you miss out on other attributes.

Stacey Manes: vice president human resources and recruiting

Mine’s around the self-confidence piece. For a lot of time I let others judge my self-worth. It’s only been really recently where I’ve shut out the noise and say to myself ‘what do I know to be true?’

It’s about slowing down and celebrating how you deserve to be in the role.

If these little tidbits help you, you may be interested in our mammoth Women in Media forum we’re holding for the first time in August. In conjunction with our annual Women in Media Awards – which you can enter here – there’s a one day speed mentoring event with amazing women in the industry. Interested? You should be. Find out more here

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