Developing Successful Leaders

Judy Sugiyama

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At the recent Women in Technology International (WITI) Summit, the annual gathering of tech-savvy women, Hillary Barnhart, senior director, Business Operations, AGS, led an interactive conversation about what it takes to be a successful leader in the semiconductor and embedded systems industry. The discussion focused on how to prepare and pursue leadership opportunities, and the requirements for success.

Joining Hillary on stage were Camelia Rusu, senior engineering director, Lam Research Corporation; May Su, vice president, Strategic Marketing, Brooks Automation; and Dina McKinney, senior engineering executive at Qualcomm. Each provided insights about their careers in high tech and what has worked well for them personally and professionally.

The session's goal was to inspire and energize the all-female audience and to provide them with valuable leadership development information they could implement immediately. Key points covered included:

Seek a mentor/sponsor - Essential to help shape a leadership career
Stay current - Learn new elements of the industry and cover the entire ecosystem
Speak up - Provide constructive feedback; ask for what you want
Take on new challenges - Volunteer for new assignments or roles to learn new skills
Know your strengths - Focus on your strengths and look for opportunities to improve them
Use time effectively - Time management is critical for a healthy work/life balance

During the Q&A discussion, audience members thanked the panelists for their insights and explored ways to attract more diversity to the industry.

As a silver sponsor of this year's WITI Summit, Applied Materials sponsored more than 20 women at the conference held in San Jose, CA. The 3-day summit delivered valuable sessions, keynote speeches, coaching circles and networking opportunities for approximately 1,100 attendees.

The next opportunity to participate in a WITI event will be at the upcoming SEMICON West tradeshow in San Francisco, July 14-16.

Author: Judy Sugiyama
As senior director of Talent Acquisition and Diversity/Inclusion, Judy is responsible for all hiring in North America, global staffing technology platform (ATS/Taleo), and employment brand. Recently she added Diversity and Inclusion to her role, overseeing the activities of 14 Employee Resource Groups and annual Diversity Days. She also serves as vice president of the Silicon Valley Diversity Council.