WomenInTech: Kim Salmon

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Kim Salmon

Years in Technology: 6
Current Title: Director of Marketing, Demand Generation
Current Organization: Onshape

1. Why did you join the technology industry?
In the beginning, I was seeking a role in a faced-paced company/industry where even as an individual contributor I could influence provable results. I entered the tech space as a little nugget email marketer/marketing automation specialist, and I was instantly hooked. There is nothing more intoxicating as a 23-year-old than hitting send on an email and watching the results roll in and surpassing all of your benchmarks. It became a personal challenge to improve daily and that mentality has followed me throughout every subsequent tech role.

2. Who is the person who has inspired you professionally?
There are so many that it’s hard to pick just one. I’ve been fortunate to work with some very smart and driven people who both challenge and inspire me every day.

But, to answer the question directly, I had a professor in college who taught me the value of stress. She was incredibly demanding of her students and operated under the notion that if you keep your expectations high, people will rise to the occasion. Ever since, I have held myself and others to very high standards and it’s contributed to an exceptional quality of work.

3. If you could give one piece of advice to your 13-year-old self what would it be?

No one will push you or hold you accountable like you will. Always have high expectation of yourself and work your hardest to exceed them — it will pay off.

On the flip side, and this has actually been a more important lesson for me, because no one will push you as hard as you will, understand that you need to cut yourself a break every so often. When you push yourself, you become your biggest critic, and make sure that that criticism is constructive and that you give your successes as much credit as your failures.

4. How do you think we can encourage more women in tech?
it starts early. Very early. With all of the toys out there that teach the concepts of coding, you can empower women to get involved in the tech space from a very young age. Focus on talking to young girls about the fact that they can achieve anything they want to and reinforce that as often as possible throughout their lives. Reinforce children as smart and precocious instead of cute.

5. What is the best part of your job?

I work with some of the most mind-bogglingly intelligent and driven people, and I LOVE it. I once read some silly table topic question that asked “Would you rather be the best player on the losing team or the worst player on the winning team?” For me, no contest — I would always default to being the worst on a winning team. Currently, I work with a team of inspirational thinkers from whom I can learn so much — that’s what gets me out of bed in the morning. (And if you’re always learning, you’ll never even be the worst player.)