Let other women help you

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Symonne Swaag is well known in the IT circles, and she brings her vast network to the RightBrains community as our new ambassador. 

What is your current role?

I’ve been in IT for over 25 years! From a young age, I was interested in technology and science subjects like physics and mathematics. When I started my career, it was when people started buying computers for their home, and I started as a trainer for these people on how to use their computers. I also worked at the Chamber of Commerce as an IT manager and did some work as an IT consultant. In the last eight years, I worked at Microsoft as a Service Delivery Manager in Healthcare.

At the moment, I’m a coach for women in IT and a change and diversity manager for organisations.

In 2008 I founded WomeninIT, our goal was to share knowledge and help each other to excel in our careers. I hope to combine my passion for IT and my strong network to help grow the RightBrains community.

What drives your passion?

During my time at the Chamber of Commerce, I was the only female IT manager. And I realised that women have a different approach to men who are more interested in gadgets, whereas we are more interested in delivering the right IT resources for the users to do their job.

I wanted to find more female IT managers, so that is why I started the WomeninIT network. We did a survey, and we received over 800 reactions, which showed that there was a big need for a network of women. 

I think gender equality is very important in the digital technology field. I want to help facilitate this equality by helping women to further their career and get more women interested in this field. 

What are your goals for your role as RightBrains ambassador?

I want to bring my experience and network to the table to help women in their IT careers. 

My advice for women is to be authentic and trust yourself. For me, it is important to always learn new skills. It was of value to me to have a diverse skill-set and experience in different jobs. You have to find out what is best for you and your career. If, for example, artificial intelligence or programming is your thing, be an expert! You should always have your career path in mind when deciding what to do next. And let other women help you with your career goals.