Celebrating International Women’s day with Zentry’s CFO, Sameena Ahmed

Celebrating International Women’s day with Zentry’s CFO, Sameena Ahmed

Why did you choose to work in tech, and what do you enjoy about it?

It’s a fast-moving industry, with the constant need to stay nimble and be open to change. Anyone who wants to stay successful in tech needs to stay up to date on technology trends and has to be willing to continuously learn and to challenge themselves. The technology sector was and remains very dynamic and leads in terms of innovation. Tech allows me to apply my expertise in finance to new and exciting challenges. There is never a boring day.

Can you tell us a little bit about your career background and your current role?

After graduate school, I worked for Optical Microwave Networks, which was a larger publicly traded entity. It was a fantastic experience that contributed a lot to my confidence – applying my training to real-world business challenges. It was this experience that allowed me to venture out to tech start-ups; first working for and taking Array Networks public, and now at Zentry Security ensuring that the company has everything it needs to achieve success. Every company must adapt to meet changing market trends and the evolving needs of their customers. In the case of Zentry, we decided to leapfrog ahead – to make a radical jump forward to true zero trust security and true cloud delivered services. It is a step that requires true commitment and focus and deserves to be its own entity, such that we can cut through the noise and single-mindedly execute on delivering the best possible product to market. Ensuring that Zentry is properly capitalized and ensuring that resources are allocated in a manner that sets the company up for success is a fantastic new challenge.

In your opinion, why is it important that more women go into tech?

The simple answer is: women bring unique ideas to the table because they think differently. Also, there is a strong correlation between diversity and business outcomes…it’s proven that companies with greater gender diversity generate higher revenues than those with a less diverse workforce. 

First, women should go into any field they have a passion for, which includes tech. We all bring something to the table, and women are going to bring that perspective. Whether it comes to decision-making within the organization, or the voice of the customer from a woman’s perspective. It can only be an enabler to be able to look at things through these different perspectives and come to the best decisions.

What’s the most important piece of advice you’d give to a woman thinking of starting a career in tech?

Trust yourself and be confident in yourself and your capabilities. Women tend to underpromise and overdeliver, especially when compared to their male counterparts. Confidence is key in succeeding. 

Believe in yourself. Also, if you are fortunate enough to have a great mentor, take advantage of it, or seek it out. It helps to have the guidance of someone who has already been successful on her journey and can help avoid some pitfalls and at the same time fast-track your journey.

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