VMware employees contribute their best work to imagine, define, and deliver the future of IT through transformative products and solutions that enable customer agility, efficiency, security, and fault tolerance in the Cloud era. Take a look at Marianna’s story on discovering her path in the technology industry, being recognized as a Silicon Valley Business Journal 2013 Woman of Influence and getting things done with her teammates to define what’s next!
Job title: Vice President of Engineering
Years at VMware: 5
Office location: Palo Alto, California
How did you get started in the technology industry and what led you to where you are today?
My parents are both engineers so it seemed an obvious path, however I always had a passion for medicine and originally thought I wanted a career in that field. When it came time to choosing an area of focus in college, I realized that having a computer science degree could open so many doors in a variety of fields – so I pursued that instead. I was offered a leadership opportunity early on in my career and really liked the role. Since then I’ve held various leadership positions at several companies and have learned a ton from each one. Of course a lot of hard work has led me to where I am today along with a passion for technology and working with people.
What are some of the exciting things currently happening in the technology industry from your perspective?
There’s so much cool stuff happening in multiple areas of technology. I’m most excited about how information is connecting to the Internet and is easily available. It seems like we’re only seeing the tip of what’s to come! I feel fortunate to be in an industry and company that is enabling that revolution.
The Silicon Valley Business Journal recently named you a 2013 Woman of Influence. What does this recognition mean to you?
I was extremely honored to receive the award and be recognized with such a great group of women. While our industry tends to be male dominant, I think it’s fantastic the publication celebrates female leaders in our community.
What has been a memorable example of teamwork and getting things done since you’ve been at VMware?
VMware’s release of vSphere 4.0 comes to mind. Teamwork and getting things done are the foundation of what goes into developing and shipping a product release – it’s really a collective effort across the company. vSphere 4.0 was the first major product release to ship after I joined the company – and at the time, my role was to bring together various R&D and product teams to define how we worked with multiple technology partners pre/post release, how could those key partners leverage vSphere’s capabilities, and also determine the impact the release would have on our ecosystem. It was a new role for me, for VMware – and groundbreaking on so many levels, but I was glad to have been a part of that strategy and effort. And I’ve been driving and fostering that type of collaboration ever since!
If you could walk in someone’s shoes for a day in your field or industry who would it be and why?
Tough question, but I’d continue to walk in my own shoes… I still feel like there’s more for me to learn and do!
What advice would you impart on someone looking to grow professionally at VMware?
It’s always a smart idea to focus on doing a great job and trust that the right things will follow. A good way to progress professionally is to learn from others – each company has a little different recipe for success! Also look at what successful people do around you, and consider finding a mentor – someone that can help you brainstorm, map out your career and give you feedback on all levels.
So what’s next from your perspective in 2013 and beyond?
On a personal level, I’m looking forward to spending time with my sons this summer and taking some family vacations! And on a professional level, we have VMworld happening in the second half and that is always exciting time. It’s a time when we announce new products, and there’s a lot of work that goes on to get to that point. In fact, my team is working on new ways to enable partners and more on this initiative will be available that time as well.
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