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Overcoming the credibility conundrumOvercoming the credibility conundrum

Executives from AT&T, MetTel and Boingo on accessing leadership and education programs, speaking up and taking credit for success, and identifying allies.

Kelsey Ziser

June 6, 2022

Overcoming the credibility conundrum

AUSTIN – Big 5G Event – In this fireside chat during the Women in Telecoms workshop, experts from AT&T, Boingo and MetTel discuss the "credibility conundrum," and how women in the industry can better demonstrate their value and best utilize their skill sets to advance their careers.

Layli Amiri, lead member of technical staff, network infrastructure and services for AT&T; Lori Thomas, SVP of strategic engagement and transformation for MetTel; and Rachel Rea, SVP of operations for Boingo, discuss how to access leadership and continuing education programs, the importance of speaking up and taking credit for personal success, and how to identify allies and support in the workforce.

Attracting female talent to the telecom industry continues to be a challenge.

"It does have to start young and you have to breed that interest. You also need women in roles and responsibility of influence," said MetTel's Lori Thomas.

"If you look across Fortune500 companies today, there's 15% [female] CEOs which is 74 women. It is not enough."

Here are just a few things covered in this fireside chat:

How the telecom industry can attract more female talent (03:31) Opportunities to reskill to establish credibility (06:55) Accessing leadership programs (08:54) Identifying allies and advocates (10:13) Making your voice heard inside and outside your organization (16:49) Becoming more comfortable with self-promotion (19:17) Changing course after constructive criticism (22:00) What to do when you don't have all the answers (24:10) Check out more news from the Big 5G Event here. — Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading

About the Author(s)

Kelsey Ziser

Editor, Light Reading

Kelsey Kusterer Ziser studied journalism and mass communication with a second major of Spanish at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, but her interest in the telecom world started with a PR position at Connect2 Communications where she worked with a variety of clients focused on communications network infrastructure, including switches, routers, SBCs, data center equipment and systems. There, she witnessed the growing influence of fiber in the industry, as packet optical service delivery platforms transformed network performance and scale.

Her drive for communicating the impact of new technology translated into a communications position at the FREEDM Systems Center, a smart grid research lab at N.C. State University. While at FREEDM, Kelsey orchestrated the center’s webinar program which crossed multiple college campuses and covered research projects like cyber security in the smart grid, the center's smart solid-state transformer, fault isolation devices and distributed energy storage devices. She most recently worked in marketing at a healthcare company and is excited to take on the role of editor for Light Reading's Upskill U website.

Outside the office, she can be found riding her aging Raleigh-brand road bike or dodging snakes on runs through the local Raleigh, N.C., greenways. A glass half-full gal, Kelsey is grateful for the sunning reptiles because they motivate her to improve her timed miles.

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