ALE BROWN

MBA, CIPP, CIPT, CIPM, PMP PRESIDENT AND PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT

"GO OUT, TRY NEW THINGS, BE BRAVE, BE UNIQUE. INNOVATION WILL FOLLOW".

- ALE BROWN

Innovation to me means a lot of different things. It means courage, it means ability to adapt, it means embracing the unknown. It means a brighter and more promising future if you can see where the
opportunities lie and just reach out and grab them.

In my life, I have experienced innovation personally and professionally. I immigrated to Vancouver in May 2000. It was still the height of the dot com era. I had a promising corporate career in IT back in Mexico, but I needed something else and I needed to try my luck in a country as beautiful as Canada. I was old enough to be bold and take a risk but young enough that if the opportunities did not work out, I could start all over. So, when I got my permanent resident visa due to the fact that Vancouver needed more tech people, I made a plan, packed my bags, said goodbye to my life, and embraced my new country.

I had my choice of jobs back then. That is, until the dot com bubble burst and tech jobs became scarce. I was lucky enough that my skills were sought out but usually I was the only or just one of few women in tech. I knew I had to look for a community of women that were experiencing the same challenges that I was and then I found Vancouver Women in Technology.

I joined their events and eventually became part of the board of directors where now I am the president. Having that support group inspired me to continue innovating until I founded my own consulting firm. They were the first ones that invited me to be a guest speaker as a newly minted entrepreneur! And now my passion is to help and mentor women that are pursuing a career in technology to be bold, to be fearless and to be innovative.

Being an immigrant and a woman in tech has been a challenge and a gift at the same time because feeling like the underdog has forced me to be focused, to work hard and not take anything for granted. If something sounds like an opportunity to innovate, I pursue it without hesitation, with the same hunger and passion that I had back when I just arrived. So, I would like to offer some thoughts about what I have found through my career that has helped me move forward to achieve my dreams:

  • Never lose faith. If a door closes it is because there was nothing behind it for you and you would have missed the beauty of looking through the window next to it. You cannot make sense of what is currently happening but trust the process. With faith and perseverance, good things happen.
  • Have an ability to adapt. Maybe what you are doing feels right but one day it may not, and you have to have the courage to do something differently in order to keep growing. You will be surprised at how much you grow when you adapt.
  • Self-confidence is your best weapon. As a woman in technology I know what it is like to stand in front of experts, people with more seniority or just a tough crowd. Sometimes it feels like you should be the last choice for the occasion but don’t forget that you are there for a reason and that
    you know more than you think. Your attitude is everything.
  • Keep an ear to the ground at all times and learn something every day. Whether it is expanding your area of expertise or coming up with the newest thing, keep the pulse on the world. Listen to what happens, read between the lines, keep your eyes open and one day you will wake up with the certainty that a new innovative idea is about to take shape.
  • Have a strong community that will support you through good and bad. Having a place where you are able to trust your peers and share what is in your mind knowing that you will get objective and different perspectives is priceless.

Go out, try new things, be brave, be unique. Innovation will follow.

 

 

Ale started her career as an IT professional working for large corporations such as Procter & Gamble and Johnson & Johnson. She also ventured into the entrepreneurial world working for boutique consulting firms when she moved to Vancouver.
She founded a consulting firm where her area of expertise is operationalizing Privacy and Security Programs for organizations to be compliant with Privacy Regulations.

Kirke Management Consulting

Vancouver Women in Technology

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