Closing the Gender Diversity Gap in Tech: A Conversation between Sonal Patel and Jillian Alter

Brought to you by: Verizon Partner Solutions Marketing Communications Team

Date: 03/24/2021

For Women's History Month, Verizon is further amplifying female voices that drive culture and change by bringing to the forefront personal stories, advice and insight from company leaders. Today, the spotlight shines on Sonal Patel, Vice President of Marketing for Verizon Partner Solutions. Below Sonal shares illuminating and inspiring thoughts for Women's History Month.

JA: Who has been your greatest inspiration?

SP: My mother immigrated to the United States in the 1970s with my father. They came to this country with $7 between them with high hopes for a better life, while fulfilling their dreams in the medical profession. Though my mom did not know anything about living in America, she learned to adapt and, after having three children, completed her Doctorate of Internal Medicine.

My mother is the backbone of our family; she persevered through circumstances that were often foreign from the way she grew up and assimilated fully into American culture. She is strong, determined and not afraid of doing hard work. Even as a retiree, my mom is focused on building her career and teachings while also making every moment magical with her grandchildren. She is my inspiration because she taught me to dream big and continue following my goals, no matter the bumps in the road.

JA: What are some of the ways you believe Verizon supports women in technology and business?

SP: Drawing from my mother’s experience, I always knew I wanted to be a part of an organization that is committed to diversity and the bettering of the world. Verizon has made amazing strides as a global citizen in the areas of environmental and social efforts, such as protecting the climate, gender equality and racial equality. For example, the organization has a variety of Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) such as WAVE (Women’s Association), BOLD (Black Originators Leaders and Doers) and VALOR (Veterans and Advocates Leading the Organization Responsibly).

WAVE, specifically, and the Women of the World (WOW) program provides female Verizon employees with the opportunity to develop their skills while being paired with a mentor who can help guide them in their individual path to growth. As companies focus more on inclusion and engagement, I believe that programs such as WAVE, WOW, BOLD and VALOR will help drive diversity of thought, which helps businesses make better decisions that lead to tangible results.

Verizon was listed by Working Mother Magazine in 2020 as one of the top companies for executive women and multicultural women based on its Diversity & Inclusion best practices. Verizon Partner Solutions also won the Global Women in Telco & Tech (GWTT) Award for Best Company (2020) for our work in closing the gender diversity gap in partnership work with the Global Leaders Forum.

JA: How can a business create an inclusive environment and a learning mindset?

SP: We are on a journey, and we continue to advance the ball further each year by actively putting women in corporate leadership roles and encouraging the creation and development of female-owned, multinational businesses. It starts with building inclusive environments that show women can succeed and learn from the success of the women before them—a learning mindset that helps demonstrate that the accomplishments of one can transcend to multiple individuals in both the short and long term.

There is growing support around the world to help small, minority and women-owned businesses and startups. Women can dedicate themselves to being fierce advocates of that support to not only progress their individual lives, but their nation's entire economic system as well. Women can also lean in on-or even create-their own networks, groups and associations to build and expand their skill sets, especially in more technical industries. As women take action and open doors for each other, men have an important role to play as well. We cannot realize gender equality without the support of men stepping up and stepping forward for women.

JA: How can women support one another to get beyond some of the obstacles they may come up against in their career journeys?

SP: As women, we have to tell our stories, embrace the realities we faced and the journey of how we conquered obstacles, all to help inspire and motivate others to do the same. The challenges will be different, but the mindset to overcome them will not. We build each other up and share in our joint successes while encouraging the next generation.

As leaders in our industry, it's important to help educate the next generation of girls, help them dream big and show examples of how we have succeeded in technology and business. The real-life anecdotes and storytelling will help pave the way for future generations to achieve far more than we ever thought possible.

We appreciate Sonal taking the time to share her personal thoughts and experiences concerning Women’s History Month. These efforts by Verizon and industry leaders like Sonal, help to further support diversity and inclusion in STEM and in the technology industry as a whole.

Verizon Partner Solutions specializes in helping wholesale carriers, resellers and third-party agents of all sizes take on their customer’s biggest challenges. Hablemos de tus clientes y de la manera en la que nuestros servicios y tecnología pueden ayudarte a transformar sus operaciones para que obtengan mejores resultados de negocios. Click here to talk to a Verizon Partner Solutions account manager today to learn about the ways we can help to grow your business.

Brought to you by: Verizon Partner Solutions Marketing Communications Team

Date: 03/24/2021

For Women's History Month, Verizon is further amplifying female voices that drive culture and change by bringing to the forefront personal stories, advice and insight from company leaders. Today, the spotlight shines on Sonal Patel, Vice President of Marketing for Verizon Partner Solutions. Below Sonal shares illuminating and inspiring thoughts for Women's History Month.

JA: Who has been your greatest inspiration?

SP: My mother immigrated to the United States in the 1970s with my father. They came to this country with $7 between them with high hopes for a better life, while fulfilling their dreams in the medical profession. Though my mom did not know anything about living in America, she learned to adapt and, after having three children, completed her Doctorate of Internal Medicine.

My mother is the backbone of our family; she persevered through circumstances that were often foreign from the way she grew up and assimilated fully into American culture. She is strong, determined and not afraid of doing hard work. Even as a retiree, my mom is focused on building her career and teachings while also making every moment magical with her grandchildren. She is my inspiration because she taught me to dream big and continue following my goals, no matter the bumps in the road.

JA: What are some of the ways you believe Verizon supports women in technology and business?

SP: Drawing from my mother’s experience, I always knew I wanted to be a part of an organization that is committed to diversity and the bettering of the world. Verizon has made amazing strides as a global citizen in the areas of environmental and social efforts, such as protecting the climate, gender equality and racial equality. For example, the organization has a variety of Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) such as WAVE (Women’s Association), BOLD (Black Originators Leaders and Doers) and VALOR (Veterans and Advocates Leading the Organization Responsibly).

WAVE, specifically, and the Women of the World (WOW) program provides female Verizon employees with the opportunity to develop their skills while being paired with a mentor who can help guide them in their individual path to growth. As companies focus more on inclusion and engagement, I believe that programs such as WAVE, WOW, BOLD and VALOR will help drive diversity of thought, which helps businesses make better decisions that lead to tangible results.

Verizon was listed by Working Mother Magazine in 2020 as one of the top companies for executive women and multicultural women based on its Diversity & Inclusion best practices. Verizon Partner Solutions also won the Global Women in Telco & Tech (GWTT) Award for Best Company (2020) for our work in closing the gender diversity gap in partnership work with the Global Leaders Forum.

JA: How can a business create an inclusive environment and a learning mindset?

SP: We are on a journey, and we continue to advance the ball further each year by actively putting women in corporate leadership roles and encouraging the creation and development of female-owned, multinational businesses. It starts with building inclusive environments that show women can succeed and learn from the success of the women before them—a learning mindset that helps demonstrate that the accomplishments of one can transcend to multiple individuals in both the short and long term.

There is growing support around the world to help small, minority and women-owned businesses and startups. Women can dedicate themselves to being fierce advocates of that support to not only progress their individual lives, but their nation's entire economic system as well. Women can also lean in on-or even create-their own networks, groups and associations to build and expand their skill sets, especially in more technical industries. As women take action and open doors for each other, men have an important role to play as well. We cannot realize gender equality without the support of men stepping up and stepping forward for women.

JA: How can women support one another to get beyond some of the obstacles they may come up against in their career journeys?

SP: As women, we have to tell our stories, embrace the realities we faced and the journey of how we conquered obstacles, all to help inspire and motivate others to do the same. The challenges will be different, but the mindset to overcome them will not. We build each other up and share in our joint successes while encouraging the next generation.

As leaders in our industry, it's important to help educate the next generation of girls, help them dream big and show examples of how we have succeeded in technology and business. The real-life anecdotes and storytelling will help pave the way for future generations to achieve far more than we ever thought possible.

We appreciate Sonal taking the time to share her personal thoughts and experiences concerning Women’s History Month. These efforts by Verizon and industry leaders like Sonal, help to further support diversity and inclusion in STEM and in the technology industry as a whole.

Verizon Partner Solutions specializes in helping wholesale carriers, resellers and third-party agents of all sizes take on their customer’s biggest challenges. Hablemos de tus clientes y de la manera en la que nuestros servicios y tecnología pueden ayudarte a transformar sus operaciones para que obtengan mejores resultados de negocios. Click here to talk to a Verizon Partner Solutions account manager today to learn about the ways we can help to grow your business.