Dismantling Barriers & Accelerating Equity & Opportunity

Organizations globally have been investing in corporate diversity and inclusion initiatives, and recently PTC held a tech and telecom event to take a closer look. As a member of the PTC Membership Committee, our very own Felix Seda joined the panel, “Dismantling Barriers and Accelerating Equity and Opportunity” along with other industry leaders including:

Moderator: Tara Giunta, Partner, Paul Hastings; Legal Counsel, PTC, USA

Panelists:

  • Tara Kristick, Head of Wholesale & Satellite Sales, Americas, Telstra, USA
  • Sonal Patel, Vice President of Marketing, Verizon Partner Solutions, USA
  • Nico Roehrich, Manager Network Investment, APAC, Facebook, Singapore
  • Felix Seda, General Manager, NJFX, USA

The panelists discussed corporate commitments and their company’s efforts to embrace various strategies and approaches for addressing challenges, as well as how best to leverage opportunities to build truly diverse workforces and inclusive cultures.

What does Diversity mean for your company?

Tara Giunta answered this question by emphasizing that diversity is a representation of the world around us. It’s not just ticking a box and there is no one size fits all. Diversity is more than we see on the surface, for it to become alive, there needs to be a culture to support it and a management team that adheres to it and tracks it across the company.

Other perspectives included:

  • Diversity and inclusion have been an ongoing evolution and journey over time.
  • Having a measurement system in place helps record progress and move the needle.
  • A common challenge is still how best to integrate diversity of thought into the realm.

Seda believes, ”Diversity is about fostering innovation and empowering new ideas and fresh thought into the workplace.  NJFX is focused on cultivating and empowering young people with diverse backgrounds and allowing that next wave of people to take on more leadership roles.”

The Moderator, Giunta also focused on the need for innovation in tech, and how telecom is key to the progress and further development of the industry.

When asked about those expectations and how NJFX tries to address them, Seda responded: “The world is changing quickly – we need to keep up with all the millennials, Gen Z’ers, and young people entering the workforce. Flexibility these days is just as important as salary and benefits. Now, flexibility is the name of the game. I’ve been fortunate that NJFX has allowed me to find my own voice, speak at conferences and forge my own path.

For example, I was able to attend PTC over the past few years and engage with other thought leaders in the industry. I began to see that there are a lot of young people in the industry, and many haven’t gotten the chance to go to major conferences to engage directly with industry executives, build up their knowledge base and forge industry relationships that can last a lifetime. The only way they can grow in the industry- and STAY in the industry is for companies to allow that to happen. Diversity isn’t just about attracting talent, but fostering and keeping that talent in the workplace – keeping them engaged and allowing them to grow and become vocal leaders.”

NJFX has backed up that philosophy by encouraging its team to get involved and help make a difference. Felix helped launch a Millennials in Telecom event at PTC2020. The group had a huge response from people who wanted a social setting to talk with others in the industry.

Felix noted, “We also had a lot of veterans in the industry who wanted to mentor and share their thoughts. The event was a balance of young people and veterans who wanted to bring this younger generation along. Diversity is also about fostering innovation – empowering new ideas and fresh thought into the workplace.”

Seda is also part of SubOptic’s Diversity, Inclusions and Belonging mentoring program. One of the group’s goals is to establish new ways of cultivating young talent in the industry and allowing them to grow and become leaders in their respective fields. There is clearly a bright future ahead for our industry and ample opportunities for young people to plug in, learn, build key relationships, and launch what could be a very rewarding and long-lasting career.

On behalf of NJFX, Cheers and Good Luck!

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