INSTILLING CONFIDENCE IN EMERGING FEMALE LEADERS
Miriam Hernandez-Kakol has consulted with some of the largest technology, communications and media companies in the Americas, rolling out large, transformational programs and advising clients as they make operational and system changes.
At KPMG, she has helped build the Management Consulting business from its inception and previously led the company’s U.S. Technology Enablement practice. She is committed to having a positive impact on the people and is by helping clients solve business challenges, growing teams or developing the next generation of STEM leaders.
Hernandez-Kakol instills confidence in emerging female leaders and encourages them to let their passions be their guide. She does this by providing career growth opportunities and “stretch” assignments meant to show that they have her confidence, trust and guidance.
She is a member of KPMG’s Women’s Advisory Board, served on the leadership team for KPMG’s Network of Women, and belongs to the New Jersey Women “Network to Network” organization. She also actively serves on the National Academy Foundation’s STEM Committee and the New Jersey Junior Achievement Board.
In the words of Miriam Hernandez-Kakol:
How can the world increase diversity in STEM fields?
“Creating an inclusive, supportive environment will help to retain diverse individuals in STEM careers. Starting early with the pipeline of students interested in a STEM field of study, through university and into their first jobs, diverse individuals need to see that their skills and experiences will be a positive catalyst in their careers. More programs need to be developed to help retain diverse individuals pursuing STEM-related degrees and already working in related careers. This can play a critical role – connecting these individuals with senior leaders who can help them grow, develop and realize their career ambitions.”
How is the world changing with respect to STEM?
“Disruption is occurring across every industry as a result of STEM-related developments. Organizations realize and the research validates that having diversity of thought, experiences and backgrounds will enable innovation and differentiation in this fast-changing marketplace.”
What can be done to move women forward in STEM?
“We need to help instill confidence in women and let them know they have what it takes to succeed. We need visible role models who are taking the time to coach, mentor and sponsor women in STEM. And we need to proactively identify high-performing and high-potential women in STEM fields and provide them with growth opportunities to build skills and advance.”
Where do you see women in STEM in five years?
“If we aggressively pursue the type of programs and sponsorship that we are discussing here, women (in many more numbers) will be among the leaders in major technical innovation and running significant organizations impacting our economy, our well-being, and our planet.”