International Women’s Day: A Q&A with Annabel Edelson
How long have you been a honey badger? About five months
What is your role in the company? Product Manager. I support the core engineering team and work on managing the growth experiments: which ones we decide to run, which end up being successful, etc.
Which location do you work for? San Francisco, California
How did you hear about Pipefy? We actually used Pipefy at my previous company. I connected with Jack [VP of Product Development at Pipefy] via my old manager.
What kind of changes do you hope to see for women in your lifetime? It’s so important to not have to look so hard for female role models in the field you aspire to become part of. It’s essential so you can really see yourself in your area of interest. Particularly in the STEM field, which is my field, it’s difficult to find this. Things like equality in education, equality in pay and equality in opportunities are also important hurdles to tackle. Those things, and women not having to feel like they are falling behind in their careers after they start a family.
Who is your biggest inspiration as a woman? My grandmother on my maternal side. She’s an amazing woman. Belarussian and Polish, she grew up in a small Georgia town and was raised Jewish. There were no other Jewish families within hundreds of miles, but it was important to her family that she remember where she came from. She is so confident in herself. She went to college at Harvard through the Harvard-Radcliffe Program in Business Administration. She was one of the early women graduates and as a woman she endured discrimination and prejudice.
After graduating, she moved out to New York City on her own to pursue a career before later on settling down and having a family. She was always very independent of my grandfather. Now, she’s not a sweet, old lady. She’s kind of a hard ass, and I admire her strength, confidence and self-assuredness. My grandparents recently revealed that after they pass, they will donate their money to women is sciences funds. They have several granddaughters in the STEM field, and that’s the kind of legacy my grandmother wants to leave behind.
What kind of values do you think women specifically contribute to the workforce? Empathy. Empathy is not a sign of weakness. It’s important to have it in the workplace, as you need to feel connected to the people you work with. I would also say humor. I’m very lighthearted and humorous and I think a lot of other women are, too.
Do you have any plans to celebrate International Women’s Day? I have always taken this day very seriously. We are getting a group together this year to engage in important and difficult discussions. My friends and I organized a dinner and invited male friends to attend. Men really need to be involved as participants in these conversations, too. Everyone is bringing along a topic to discuss.
What advice would you give to a young woman starting her career? You don’t have to be an activist to be a feminist. You don’t need to be rallying to prove you care about these issues. You can show it by working your ass off at your job and proving your equality that way. I studied engineering and proved that women can get a career in that field. People who are screaming and demonizing men aren’t making this easier for us. This is about treating all people fairly and not being told you can’t do something because you’re a woman.