An award-winning source of inspiration
Linda de Winter Kohler is one of 50 inspiring women in the technology sector in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. She is head of IT development at Swiss Post, mother of three children and has been given the “Inspiring Fifty” award in Munich.
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“You can’t be what you can’t see” is the guiding principle of the “Inspiring Fifty” initiative. The goal of this non-profit organization is to make diversity the norm in the tech field. Since 2016, Inspiring Fifty has been giving awards to fifty women from various countries who can become role models to girls and other women through their careers in the tech sector. Fifty women who through their dedication have contributed to changing how we think about the role of leaders in the tech sector. Fifty women who are shaping the future and realizing groundbreaking innovations.
This year, for the first time, the price will be awarded in the German-speaking DACH region (Germany, Austria, Switzerland). And one of the prize winners is Linda de Winter Kohler, Head of Development (I2) at Swiss Post. We are not surprised that Linda was awarded this prize. She has been interested in technology since childhood. At first glance, her career might almost look “unwomanlike”. But it is exactly this type of prejudice that Linda wants to sweep away, as she reveals to us in a short interview:
What would you recommend to young women who are interested in a career in IT?
I would recommend a career in IT to every woman. The IT field is always in a state of flux. Technologies change and develop rapidly and continually. This means on the one hand that it never gets boring, and on the other, that there is always something new for all our colleagues. With mixed teams come mixed perspectives, and that makes it easier to deal with changes. Both for men and for women. It is the differences that make us what we are. Teams are enriched when there are people of different genders, cultures, etc. working together with their own perspectives and ways of conducting themselves.
I recommend young women not to hold back or doubt themselves. I also recommend that they do not try to act masculine or try to be anyone but themselves. Just be yourself, be a woman and act in the way that comes naturally to you. If you are interested in technology and rapid changes, appreciate continual development and can adopt networked thinking – you’re at the right place. And this has nothing to do with being a man or a woman.
What made you decide to pursue a career in IT?
I was always interested in technology, my father was an engineer and my mother was a cooking teacher. I was always outside with my father, I repaired cars, welded and set up electrical circuits. Ultimately, I ended up in the IT field a little by chance. After my studies in technical business management, I was able to start working in telecommunications at Siemens. This was my way into the sector. It fascinated and interested me from the very start and I have always developed myself further in the field of technology.
What do you appreciate most about your job?
I highly value the rapid development – you will never have learned everything; you have to keep on developing. I also appreciate the collaboration with other people. In my management position, people and teams are much more the focus than technology itself. I like the mix and enjoy delivering top results with my teams that make our customers happy and create value for them and our company.
Congratulations, Linda de Winter Kohler!