We were thrilled to be joined by five successful women, for the DSWIL Corporate Panel, who were eager to share their experience and insights into how women can break through the glass ceiling and directly address gender-related challenges in the workplace.
Yos Bugallo from Ernst & Young, Valisha Graves from Morgan Stanley, Megan Hughes from the WNBA, and Susan Youngblood from IBM spoke about how the culmination of their experiences, the good and bad, have taught them how to be a leader in the workplace and break through the glass ceiling.
Key Takeaways from the Corporate Panel:
1)Spearhead but also be patient for the right, best opportunity for you
If you assume hard work will always be recognized and rewarded, an opportunity may pass you. Don’t play small and always ask for what you want, but be ready to take on what you want in a realistic way.
2) Know the policies that may pertain to your needs– create them if they’re nonexistent
During her career, Mrs. Youngblood was the first to create the maternity leave policies fit for her position and lifestyle.
3) Always style above your position at work
If you can wear or do it at the club, you can’t wear or do it at work
4) You can be “That Girl” that seems to have everything together
If you find that one person who seems like they’re doing everything right at work, imitate that person
5) Have a virtual board of directors
Create and maintain a ready, customized board of individuals that you know you can ask about a particular subject
6) Understand your power to create you future now
Talk to faculty, take classes, meet a variety of people, go to events like DSWIL!
Also be sure to tune in to our eClips from Susan Youngblood to hear more about her journey to success! (If you are at Cornell use your NetID and password to see the full interview.)
Yos Bugallo is a Campus Consultant in Ernst & Young’s Inclusiveness Recruiting team, specializing in the diversity recruiting strategy and development. Prior to joining EY, Yos was an Associate Director at the NYU Stern MBA Admissions office. Yos has also served on the Board of the New York chapter of the Association for Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting (ALPFA) as the Director of Student Programs. Yos holds a Bachelors Degree in Sociology from Brandeis University. She lives in Queens, NY, with her husband Andrew, and her two children, Abby and Andy.
Valisha Graves: Exec. Director, Institutional Securities Technology Group, Morgan Stanley
Valisha manages the technology strategy and budget for the Global Capital Markets division. In recent years, she has focused her career on the development of financial analytic applications that leverage her financial and technology expertise. Prior to joining Morgan Stanley, she worked at various financial institutions, including RateFinancials, Lehman Brothers and National Westminster Bank. Her prior technology experience was as part of a four-person deal team at Accordia, a $100 MM early stage, quasi private equity e-commerce technology incubator. She earned an M.B.A. from Columbia University and an A.B. in Government/International Relations from Cornell University. She serves on the Board of Trustees at Suffield Academy where she was an A Better Chance scholar and is a mentor in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program.
Megan Hughes: Basketball Operations and Player Relations, WNBA
Megan Hughes is a Basketball Operations and PlayerRelations Coordinator, where she is responsible for planning, coordinating, and executing player development initiatives, collegiate prospecting efforts, and basketball operations procedures. Prior to joining the WNBA, Hughes led a successful career playing Division 1 Basketball for the Cornell University Women’s Basketball team, where she helped lead her team to the 2008 NCAA Tournament and Ivy League Championship. Hughes holds a degree from Cornell University in Marketing Strategy and Management
Susan Youngblood: Director of Human Resources, IBM
Susan is a HR Director in IBM’s software unit. She has responsibility for employees located in 40 countries worldwide. Susan has held HR leadership roles in multiple business units including software, hardware development and manufacturing, sales, services, and consulting. She has led HR for 9 of IBM’s top 58 executives. Susan holds a B.S. in psychology from Vassar College, which she completed in 3 years, and a master’s degree in Industrial & Labor Relations from Cornell. She also a member of the ILR Alumni Board of Directors