Updated: Apr 19, 2019
This week we’re talking with Rashim Mogha, Senior Director Product Evangelism at Oracle.
Rashim is a thought leader and cloud evangelist who empowers professionals by articulating complex cloud capabilities into crisp, clear, and attainable business benefits. A keynote speaker and #1 Amazon best-selling author of “Fast-Track Your Leadership Career”, Rashim speaks at conferences around the world. Her insights have appeared in publications such as Forbes and ATD. With a goal to empower women leaders, Rashim founded eWOW- empowered Women of the World, an intellectual platform to help women with their technical and leadership skills to be successful, to thrive!
What is your favorite leadership quote?
I had this quote even before I had a career, “Tough times don’t last long, Tough people do.” From the leadership perspective, this quote embodies so many qualities – persistence, resilience, perseverance and having a clear vision. You know where your vision is and you continue to go towards that vision in spite of what comes your way. I often use it.
What attracted you to your current industry and role?
I come from a training and enablement background for 7 years. I see education and empowerment as the core for any business to allow them to grow. I studied software development and like others all I wanted to do was build products. Early on though I had an opportunity to write a book and that helped me realize I would be able to reach out and meet so many people and spread knowledge around. My current role is all about empowering people - giving them enough information to make decisions. When we look at products and services today, people don’t buy products and services, they buy the value of that product or service. For example, if we are selling our cloud services, we are empowering cloud users to make the right decisions - is this the right time for them to move to cloud, is it the right thing for them, should they go all in or a hybrid model? It is all about empowering the world.
What is the most important thing you have learned that has been critical to your career success?
I would have to say there are two things. One is knowing my super power, which has always helped me and second is to take risks and continuously learn. For me, I always knew that I have the ability – and everyone has a super power by the way we just don’t take the time to identify it. My super power has always been that I can make things happen - creating a strategy and then executing on that strategy. Because I know I can do it, I have taken risks, been in different organizations, pitched a new role at organizations and say this is what your clients need. When jumping into a new role I have never known 100 percent what I needed to know to do that role but have figured it out. Early on I used to think I need this certification or that training – I need Software development - and this is going to be my 20/30 year career. But I learned when I got into the industry that we don’t live one life. We live many lives and you can be successful in each as long as you are willing to give what it takes.
And you don’t move into something new because you have failed in that space but because you have learned and you want to learn and grow.
What is your leadership style?
I am a mindful leader. Empathetic. My team getting an opportunity to grow is very important to me. It is all about fostering that trust and giving everyone the opportunity to learn something new. The team is like an organism and a leader is somewhere between the heart and the brain. As most of us are not trained to be a leader, it is critical that we remember that. I became a manager because I excelled at my job as an individual contributor. When I was first a manager I was probably a bad because all I wanted was for my team to work. I had the opportunity to be a manager very early on in my career – about 6 months into my role – which was very exciting as an opportunity but also when you are a new manager there is some ego around it. I was also aware women don’t get that opportunity so there was pressure to succeed. As I have grown in my career the relationships that work best are those where I lead the way, providing an example for the team and then giving them an opportunity to have a mind of their own.
We hire smart people. And then somewhere along the way managers don’t expect their teams to think. They expect them to just follow orders and that is not correct and doing so prevents the diversity of thought on the team.
What advice do you have for aspiring leaders?
First is to be an empathetic person. That is the core of it. Be a mindful person yourself. When we talk about mindfulness, people think about meditation but there is a lot more to mindfulness than that. Mediation is just one way to bring in that clarity of thought. Secondly, provide clarity of vision. Know where you want to go as a person. Lastly, be a good listener. If you cannot empathize and cannot put yourself in their shoes you will not be able to be a good leader.