In this episode of VANRATH Leadership Voices, we chat to Lisa Stevenson, Site Lead at PEAK6.
PEAK6 are leading the way for women in tech and are passionately driven by inclusion and diversity in the workplace. Working in partnership with them to help continue this goal, we were inspired to share more of their transformational story.
In this interview, we dive into the leadership at the heart of PEAK6 and find out all about how they are supporting women in their PEAK6 career.
1. Why is gender balance and having a more diverse workforce important to you at PEAK6, especially in senior management teams?
"Tech needs people at its centre. Having a more diverse workplace brings fresher, creative ideas. Innovation cannot happen without relationship building and teamwork and these skills will always be valued. Diversity brings together varied perspectives, produces a more holistic analysis of the issues a company faces and stimulates greater effort, leading to improved decision-making.
Here at PEAK6, we are proud to have both a male and female co-founder. We are deploying projects to make sure we hire more, lose fewer and promote more women. PEAK6 already has a balanced female leadership in place and we are focusing on our tech departments to drive more inclusion and diversity in the workplace."
2. What do you think are the most important traits we need in a leader today, male or female, and what do female leaders bring that is unique?
"Important leadership traits are communication, humility, resilience, vision, influence and positivity.
When young people don’t see women in positions of power, they start to think only men can be leaders and girls are then less likely to pursue leadership roles.
Companies cannot afford to ignore 50% of the potential workforce and expect to be competitive in the global economy; having more female leaders is crucial because they change the perceived conception about who can lead and what qualities are necessary to have in a leadership position.
Women in leadership roles break down barriers and show everyone what women can, and should, achieve"
3. What advice can you share with young women entering a male-dominated profession?
"Be brave. Recognise the value of your opinion, believe that what you have to share is worth listening to. Don’t be afraid to step outside your comfort zone, seek the support you need, and, most of all, rise to the challenge to be the best you can be.
The best way to get help, is to ask for it. People do want to help. Find a mentor. Inside or outside of the company. They are some great groups locally to interact, share and learn from others in the industry."
4. Why should a female in tech consider a career at PEAK6?
"We’ve heard all the myths about Fintech—too cutthroat, too intense, too risky—that’s not the case at PEAK6. We know women make outstanding developers and technologists, but there are not enough female developers in the Fintech field yet. We are changing that.
You will be able to explore unique solutions and try fresh ideas that may benefit our financial services and trading businesses as well as our other ventures. You’ll collaborate with some of tech’s sharpest minds to solve the firm’s ever-changing but exciting challenges. Working in tech at PEAK6 means that you’ll always be presented with a variety of new possibilities as you continue to enhance your skills.
The tech is versatile, creative and collaborative. You don’t have to dedicate yourself to one thing. You can start with something that looks interesting and progress into another, giving you more flexibility than most careers do. At PEAK6, due to the different types of businesses we are involved in, you can have many different careers all at the same company.
Regardless of what that job might be, technology will always be an exciting and valuable sector to study and work in. Let it be your blank canvas to take you where you want to go. Because the more women that want to work in tech, the better our tech will be."
For more information on careers with PEAK6, get in touch with Ryan Quinn or Phil Gamble on 028 9033 0250.