On March 8 every year, International Women’s Day is celebrated all around the world to recognize the contributions and achievements of women across various communities while calling for greater equality. This year, the theme “Make It Happen” aims to encourage effective action for advancing and recognizing women. In conjunction with this occasion, Microsoft Asia Pacific will be featuring female leaders from around the region, sharing their inspirations as well as words of advice for women hoping to #MakeItHappen in the technology industry and beyond.
Duong Thi Kim Anh
Human Resource Manager, Microsoft Vietnam
Duong Thi Kim Anh is the first human resource (HR) manager in Microsoft Vietnam. Together with other leaders, Kim Anh has been searching, developing and training IT talents for the company. Prior to joining Microsoft in 2008, she has held several HR management positions in various multinational companies including Motorola Vietnam and Quang Ba Royal Park Lt – Sedona Suite Hanoi, a joint venture company between Vietnam and Singapore’s Keppel Land.
What advice would you give girls to help them reach their goals and Make It Happen?
I feel that girls nowadays are more dynamic and proactive. My advice would be to live your life according to your passion. The opportunities ahead are vast, but to seize them, you must move faster, with greater hunger for success and focus, and be willing to continuously transform. Live and aspire to change your life now.
What would be your advice to women to take on leadership roles?
Don’t be afraid to take on the challenge. Women these days are dynamic and a lot smarter than before, so there is no reason why we cannot do as well or better than men in a leadership role. In fact, I believe that women can achieve better results in some instances due to our unique characteristic to see and manage things from a different perspective. Personally, I have always been one to learn, discover and do things differently.
Who are the women who inspire you the most, and why?
My mother is probably my biggest inspiration in life. She is not one to give up easily and is always able to tackle situations and challenges well. She has been a great role model for me since young and her influence has helped me deal with many challenges in my personal life and work.
What does International Women’s Day mean to you?
It’s a special and great occasion for all women to be celebrated, recognized and respected.
Why do you think it’s important to involve more women in the tech industry?
While men seem to excel in the tech industry, I feel that women can offer a different skillset that helps to add more value. Ultimately, women can play an important role in making the tech industry even better.
Do you think there are any existing misconceptions or biases among women regarding work in the tech industry or women in the tech industry?
There seems to be a general impression that women cannot do as well as men in the tech industry. While it is probably true that there are not as many women working in the tech industry compared with men, there is no evidence supporting the statement that women cannot do as well as men. In fact, there are many examples of women who are dynamic, smart and excel in their respective tech fields. Many of these women are leading the biggest IT corporations in the world and bringing change to the industry.
At Microsoft, we strive to create an environment that helps us capitalize on the diversity of our people and the inclusion of ideas and solutions to meet the needs of our global and diverse customer base.
Find out more about our global diversity and inclusion programs here.
Read more about the experiences and inspirations from these female leaders in Microsoft Asia Pacific:
- Rukmani Subramanian – Chief Marketing & Operations Officer, Microsoft Malaysia
- Jan Ferguson – Director of Customer & Partner Experience, Microsoft New Zealand
- Mira Fitria Soetjipto – Human Resource Director, Microsoft Indonesia
- Sunny J. Park – Legal and Corporate Affairs Director, Microsoft Korea
- Pip Marlow – Managing Director, Microsoft Australia
- Siriporn Pajharawat – Director of Developer Experience & Platform Evangelism (DX) Group, Microsoft Thailand
- Flora Chen – Customer Service and Support Lead, Microsoft Taiwan
- Karrie C. Ilagan – Country General Manager, Microsoft Philippines
- Jessica Tan – Managing Director, Microsoft Singapore
- Serena Cheung – Director of Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partners Group (SMS&P), Microsoft Hong Kong