Data Center CCO Talks Parenting, Having It All, And Telco's Gender Gap
This blog is based on an episode of our podcast, The PathCast. The PathCast is an interview series with tech and business experts, discussing the good, the bad and the ugly of business and provides actionable steps for you to implement from the ground up. You can listen to this episode here.
Jaime Leverton is the senior vice president and Chief Commercial Officer of eStruxture Data Centers. While she’s only been in that role for a few months, Leverton has a wealth of experience in various executive roles and is a highly sought-after industry thought leader, with a particular focus on women in tech.
“Time is not always the answer,” she said, when discussing industry progression. “Only when it’s too late can we look back and see that time has passed. We need to be doing more now.”
Leverton’s keynote speeches often revolve around diversity and how to attract more women into telecoms. The industry has moved forward, but particular attention has been placed on board rooms. As a result, little change has occurred at an executive level, never mind more junior roles.
The mum-of-two often takes her daughters along to conferences when she speaks about such issues, where they sometimes get involved and ask questions. This is a key issue repeated throughout tech and telecoms – there simply are not enough role models.
- The importance of young girls having strong role models has been echoed throughout Radial Path’s work. You can see more here.
Fill your kids in with what you do at work
It’s not enough to just be successful but also to let you children in on it too, helping them to understand why you can’t go to certain events or play a bigger role at school.
Leverton addresses this with complete transparency, whether that’s taking her children to a conference or laying our her schedule so they know what’s going on. It’s also important that you’re honest with yourself about your own workload and capabilities – it’s okay to say no.
“I’m not going to be on the parent council at school or to personally bake cakes for fundraisers, those are things I just can’t feel guilty about. My kids are comfortable with that,” she said.
Guillermo Gaspart, founder of BYHOURS also advocates better communication between children and parents. In fact, he allows employees to bring children in during the summer so they can see and understand where parents are when not at home.
Whilst describing the family’s “joint calendar”, and the conversations with her husband ahead of them having kids, Leverton said she outsources as much as she can.
“I don’t want to worry about doing the laundry when I get home and only have a few hours to spend with my family,” she said. “We both have important jobs and love what we do. When we were thinking about having a family, that was something we had to talk about. How do we keep the balance?”
Like them, new founders should try to turn everything work-related off at the weekend. For Leverton, this is often kickstarted with Friday night dinner where they are joined by friends and neighbors.
“As well as that, it’s also important to keep your own space. I try to make it to yoga once or twice a week, while my husband goes for a run at 5 am every morning,” she added.
Want to hear more about Leverton’s lifestyle and how she manages her children and work-life balance while pioneering diversity? Listen to the newest episode of our podcast, The PathCast now.
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