This interview is published as part of Pledge 1%’s Women Who Lead series, which celebrates women in the Pledge 1% community who are creating change within their workplace and communities.
Q1: What is your Name and Title?
Alexandra Lindsay, Head of Marketing for hobbyDB.
Q2: How long have you been in your current position?
A year and a half.
Q3: What inspired you to work in this industry?
One of the best parts of the tech start-up industry is how fast paced and collaborative it can be. Working for a start-up gives me the opportunity and autonomy to influence the creation and development of a new entity. I feel very fortunate to be able to work with some of the best minds in tech to create solutions in the areas of genealogy (at Mocavo) and collectibles (at hobbyDB) used by millions of people.
Q4: What would you tell women who are looking to work in tech? Any advice on how they can build their career?
I’m very lucky to have come from a line of strong, working women. When I was talking with my Nana, (who was born in 1939) about this interview, the first thing she shouted when I asked her this question was “DO IT!” Our generation is so fortunate in that we have had many women who came before us who fought to open doors and opportunities that they never had as working women. Although there is still a long way to go in terms of full equality, we owe it to past and future generations to have the courage to push ourselves into male dominated industries such as tech, and into leadership positions where we really can make a positive difference. I would also encourage women to build up and support their women colleagues. The more we can work together to build strong female leaders, the more positive influence we will have.
Q5: Is your company a Pledge 1% member or do you personally give back to your community? If so, how do you give and to what cause?
I’m proud to say that every company that I’ve worked for in Colorado has been a Pledge 1% member. It is such a wonderful way for us to prioritize giving back to a community that continues to support Colorado start-ups.
Q6: Do you serve as a mentor? What does mentorship mean to you?
Throughout my life, I’ve had many important mentors who have helped mold me into the leader that I am today. Because of the positive influence they have had in my life, I knew that I also wanted to be a mentor. Luckily, there are many ways to become involved in your community as a mentor. During my time at the CU Boulder, I decided to take on the challenge of coaching a high school girls’ soccer team. Throughout the three years that I coached these young women, not only did I get to serve as a mentor for them as they prepared for their next adventures after high school, I learned more about myself than I ever expected. These young women gave me the courage to be myself, throw fear to the wind, and embrace vulnerability; all of which have helped me become a stronger leader in my career. That’s the best part about mentorship, that it truly can be a two-way street and you never know what you’re going to learn. I would encourage everyone to both find mentors to help you grow throughout your journey, and also find individuals that you can positively influence through mentorship.
Q7: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received to help you with your career?
One of the best pieces of advice that I’ve received is to show up and work hard. It’s as simple as that. I believe that responsibility is taken, not earned. The more you can be counted on to show up every day and do a great job when no one is looking, the further you will go in your career.
The other piece of great advice that I’ve received is to lead with vulnerability. What this means to me is to have the courage to put yourself out there and potentially fail, to learn from your mistakes, to have honest, compassionate conversations with your team members, and to always be open-minded and daring.
Q8: What’s the one piece of advice you would give to yourself 5 years ago?
Worrying is never productive. I’ve come to find that if I focus on setting myself up for success, and having a positive outlook, I am exponentially more successful than if I would have just worried. Realize that it’s okay if you don’t know everything and that you’re not ever going to be perfect. It’s always okay to ask for help and seek out the support of those who are rooting for you to succeed. One of the best parts of the journey is pushing yourself to learn and then applying that new knowledge to problems that you never thought you could solve.