The tech industry has expanded by a significant 79% in the last 30 years, and according to recent studies, women account for only 25% of that expansion (cio.com). While this underrepresentation serves as a marker for how far we are from reaching equality in the workplace, it’s also costing companies. Research consistently shows that companies with a higher percentage of women in executive roles have above-average profits (weforum.org)
At KUDO, diversity is in our DNA. We are proud to celebrate the women in our leadership team in honor of Women’s History Month. This week, we sat down (digitally) to talk to Michal Raz, VP of Global Partnerships at KUDO, about her start in the tech world, her experience working at KUDO, the lessons she’s learned thus far, and what she envisions for a language barrier-free future.
Hometown: Rehovot, Israel
Languages spoken: Hebrew, English
Position at KUDO: VP of Global Partnerships
Hobbies/ surprising facts: Being in nature, backpacking around the world, jewelry making
How and when did you get into the language/tech world?
I have been in the communications space all of my career in the early years, developing and managing engineering and business development and partnerships. KUDO is my first company in the language space.
What challenges have you come up against as a woman in tech?
Women in tech and leadership positions are still the minority. I have never let it bother me; I got a bit bored when sports became too much of a theme, but being curious, creative, and professional has always been my key to success. I think a diverse work environment is the key to any company’s success.
What is one of the most valuable lessons you’ve learned in your professional career thus far?
The first lesson- always aspire to listen more than talk. You learn so much more if you let others talk. There is no need to constantly prove your place.
The second lesson is that women sometimes react differently in some situations; there is no need to train ourselves with male features. We think, act, and solve differently; that is the benefit of diversity. It makes decisions more accurate and suitable for our customers and partners.
Lastly, motherhood and career- a big one I know. When I had small kids, there was that constant pull to mimic how my mom and most moms spend time with their kids vs. what was needed to do all my jobs well. Learning to quiet all the advice around and listen to myself and my instincts and be ok with it was a great technique I used. There are so many frustrated moms that blame their kids for what could have been, and no kid needs that baggage. Choose and be whole with your choices.
How is working for a global remote company like KUDO different from your previous work experiences?
My personal skills have always helped me in my internal and external relationships. Creating a strong relationship with video rectangles is challenging. I think we should all strive to meet each other at least a few times a year. I also make a point to take breaks from sitting in front of the computer and take some nature walks for balance.
What does a language barrier-free future look like to you?
For me, a language barrier-free future is a world where we can all show our strongest suit in discussions with the freedom to understand and be understood on a deeper level. It is a hybrid world that will be a combo of AI and tiers of interpreters, where business-to-consumer discussions will enjoy the power of multilingual in everyday SaaS encounters.
What is KUDO?
Are you ready to have more accessible and inclusive meetings and events? Join a live demo, and learn how to expand your reach globally, ensuring you have the power to understand and be understood.