To be a successful leader in a technology company you have to have approaches to problems, teams, and clients that fit both the makeup of your team and the industry you are in. On this episode, I am happy to feature a conversation I had with Christine Pecina, Vice President of Software at Affirmed Networks, a tech company named to the Forbes’ second annual list of next billion dollar start ups. Christine has over 25 years of experience in engineering and now serves in a senior leadership role at Affirmed Networks. She has so many great insights to share about what it takes to become a successful leader, leadership skills, and working in a fast paced environment like technology. You’ll benefit greatly from her insights, so set aside some time to listen.

Successful leaders in tech have to know their stuff.

When it comes to being successful in a technology company, Christine Pecina says that every leader has to really know their material. They need to become a technical expert in whatever area they were hired to oversee. That’s because becoming a leader is about gaining the respect of your peers, and the number one way to do that in the tech field is to know your area of specialization. You can hear how Christina suggests you go about gaining that kind of expertise and how it will enable you to move toward leadership positions in the technology field, on this episode of The Success Talk Show.

If you’re going to lead in a technology company, you need to be fiercely competitive.

Every technology company is working to build software or hardware solutions that bring value to their clients or customers. But it’s another level of achievement to be at the top of your industry. Christine Pecina says that leaders in the technology space need to have a mindset that drives them to crush their competition. It’s what enables them to drive toward success personally and as a team. Christine has a good deal of expertise leading teams to the kind of excellence that crushes the competition, so be sure you listen to this episode to hear what she has to share.

Written communication skills are vital for every successful leader.

When I asked Christine Pecina what she felt were the top 3 skills leaders in technology need to have in order to succeed, her final suggestion was that leaders need to be effective in written communication. In her experience it’s vital that written communications skills are part of the leader’s skill set because what you say verbally will be forgotten but what you write will endure and serve as a resource for a long time. It doesn’t have to be creative, brilliant writing, just clear, comprehensive instructions about the technology you work with and its proper use. Customers will need it. Your team will need it. So it’s beneficial for you to develop the skill. Find out more on this episode of The Success Talk Show.

Leaders can encourage innovation by eliminating fear.

How can leaders in technology companies foster an innovative company culture? Christine Pecina says that the primary way to build an innovative culture is to remove the fear that keeps it from happening. That means making it OK to make mistakes because when people believe it’s OK to make mistakes or look dumb, they are more willing to take risks. As a leader you need to encourage the people on your teams to put themselves out there, to try something new. Innovation will be the natural fruit of doing so. If you want to hear from someone who has done it well, you need to hear this conversation with Christine.

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:34] Get to know Christine Pecina, technology leader in one of the most promising startups out there.
  • [1:47] The top 3 leadership skills for those leading in technology these days.
  • [15:50] The importance of understanding world cultures and team culture.
  • [20:44] Advice for those who need to gain confidence to climb to a senior leadership roles in tech.
  • [24:04] Lessons Christine wishes she had known earlier in her career.
  • [27:46] How you can connect with Christine.

Resources & People Mentioned