Glassbreakers.co is a safe, supportive and dynamic online community for professional women. Its mission is to empower women to break the glass ceiling, together. A Glassbreaker is anyone who believes in the social, political and economical equality of the sexes. Here is an interview with one such woman.
What Is your name?
What do you do?
I’m the Chief Product Officer & Partner at Techstars. I mentor and invest in early-stage software entrepreneurs.
Why do you love your job?
I work with some of the smartest, hardest working, honest people on the planet. Every day is different, every challenge is a new one.
What is your proudest career moment?
Being named one of The Top 7 Most Influential Women in Tech by Entrepreneur magazine.
Have you ever quit or been fired from a job before? Tell us what happened.
I've quit 2 jobs. The first one I quit after 3 months because I knew it wasn't right for me, and no sense in dragging out the pain. The second one I quit because there was a change in leadership and I no longer had confidence in the leadership team. Working with people I trust and believe in is critical for me, and I just didn't believe the new leadership could pull off the plan. Turns out I was right, they went bankrupt after 9 months.
What advice do you have for other women who want to be in your role in two years?
Work with people who believe in you, who empower you, who you trust and find inspirational. It's magical when everyone is working to help everyone else crush it. But when an environment is toxic (even if its not deliberate), either change it, or get out.
Outside of your day job, what else are you passionate about?
My KIDS! I have 2 beautiful children and am married to the love of my life. I'm passionate about spending time with them, and pushing my limits, both physically and mentally. I love a good challenge!
Have you had any inspiring mentorship moments in your career?
I don't think I can point to any one moment. Life is full of little lessons, and everyone around me is my mentor. They all teach me to be more humble, more accepting, more gracious... you just have to pay attention.
What song pumps you up in the morning before a big day?
Silence. Complete silence and stillness.
What other women in your industry do you admire?
Astronaut Karen Nyberg. She's not in my industry. But I remember reading about the hug she gave her kid (who's about my son's age) when she went up into space for the 1st time. I know how hard it is for me to say goodbye to my kids when I'm leaving for a couple of days. I cannot imagine the grief she must have felt getting on the space shuttle, knowing she might never see her son again. That must have been the single hardest thing she ever had to do. But yet, how do you say no to a ride in space!
What books, blogs, podcasts, networking groups or other resources do you recommend for Glassbreakers interested in your field?
What have you learned from failure? (either yours or a failure that directly impacted you)
If you aren't failing, you aren't trying hard enough.
Anything else to share?
Whoever said work-life balance LIED... :-)
Follow Nicole on Twitter @nglaros!