Minh-Hai Nguyen has been working at IBM for 14 years in different roles and switching skill hats from developer to business analyst and service designer to project manager. She is currently working as Business Designer and also leads Customer Engagement & Design Practice at IBM iX, which is IBM’s digital agency arm, working in the intersection of strategy, design and progressive technology
After graduating from high school Nguyen had multiple different options to choose from for her future career. From these options, the technology field felt as the best choice, which has lasted till today. She speaks more about her career path in her video.
Making a difference while continuously learning
In her work she enjoys most for the possibility to continuously learn new things, working with diverse teams and get a chance to crack challenges together with clients from variety of industries. For the future, Nguyen is especially interested how to utilize technology for building more sustainable solutions.
“What keeps me motivated is making a difference for people, while continuously learning. In my current project I get to think with a global team how to fight against climate change in energy industry and learn about this very complex, but essential topic.”, Nguyen tells.
Since young age, Nguyen has always been interested and curious of multiple disciplines. This gave her some concerns especially in earlier phase of career.
“I would say to my younger self that expertise is not always just about building depth in “hard” skills. When I started in consulting, I really wanted to specialize in one subject and get depth in it and thought what IBM offering should I focus on. I realized though that my strength and expertise is rather across disciplines, connecting the dots between people needs and technology .” Nguyen thinks.
You don’t need to love tech to work in tech
Nguyen wants to encourage everyone to consider the IT-field as a valid option for their future. For her, technology is the enabler to build better human experiences. The field has multiple different career paths besides the classic coding and development. In her team there are people with various backgrounds, not just engineering and business people, but also from Arts, Psychology or Healthcare.
For employers Nguyen sends the following tip:
“Work environments and teams need diversity of skills, diversity of style and diversity of thinking. We’ve talked about T-shaped individuals, but we also need T-shaped teams.”
Diversity creates better innovations
For over a century, IBM has been pursuing responsible innovations to bring technology closer to all people. IBM utilizes its diverse experience and knowledge together with a variety of technological solutions, emphasizing the importance of an open-source code.
“We work hard to ensure that AI and neurotechnology are both developed and utilized in ethical ways”, says IBM’s technical specialist, Eelia Mastosalo.
Through technology the world can be made a better place for everyone. Even the smallest innovations can support big changes. IBM is part of This is not a webinar-event to support everyone’s equal possibilities to find a career in the technology field and affect the world positively, no matter what their background might be.
“We at IBM want to inspire and encourage everyone to study and work with technology no matter where you come from. Bringing in more diversity brings people thinking differently together and thus we can create better innovations for the future”.
This Is Not a Webinar
Minh-Hai Nguen was in #mimmitkoodaa event on spring 2021. The presentation name was Power of Diversity in Creating Digital Services and its description belongs as follows:
Creating digital services is much more than a tech project and requires substantial multi-discpilined team effort. Diversity is an essential characteristic of a healthy, resilient and high-performing team. People tend to hire and promote others who think and work like they do. However, to successfully innovate at scale, we must be able to run at full speed and pivot without tripping. Without diversity, teams might sink into groupthink and are less likely to pivot when they should. When building teams, we should consider different aspects of diversity: diversity of skills, diversity of style, and diversity of thinking.
In this session Minh-Hai will share her own story of ending up working for a tech giant IBM in different roles and what role diversity plays in their digital projects.