On March 8th women around the world will be honored for International Women’s Day…but instead of a day, we’ve decided to highlight our women in tech all week long…partners included! Tune in each day to learn more about the SUSE women behind the magic!
Name: Fleur Copping
Occupation: IT Professional (VP, Global Strategic Alliances EMEA Fujitsu)
Q: Tell us a little about you.
A: I spend the days helping solve my customers issues by matching some of the innovative technology that Fujitsu has in its kit box. When I’m not doing that I enjoy spending time with friends and watching sport – I’ve a season ticket at Crystal Palace, a premiership football team. I also love rugby and playing golf.
Q: Who is your biggest influence?
A: My biggest influence growing up, apart from my immediate family, was Sir Freddie Laker. He was a true entrepreneur that was happy to disrupt the norms when he started up the world’s first low cost airline. He was also an engineer at heart and wanted to understand how things worked and how they could be fixed – even the toaster!
Q: Who are your ideal female icons?
A: I think there are lots to choose from but I recently learnt about Rosalind Franklin. She took the picture (using X-ray crystallography) that helped Watson and Crick work out the molecular structure of DNA. She worked in a very male environment – at times she was part of the team at others she was the outsider. This didn’t stop her becoming the best at her game.
Q: How you define women empowerment?
A: It’s about being free to be the person that you want to be and helping the people you touch in life get there too.
Q: Do you think it’s important to have an International Women’s Day?
A: Yes – it gives us all a moment to think about the impact we are making and how we can encourage other women.
Q: What did you want to be growing up?
A: A fighter Pilot
Q: What advice would you give your younger self?
A: It’s all going to be fine.
Q: Why do you feel it’s important for young girls to consider roles in STEM?
A: Because it is fun and the roles are always evolving and changing. You never get bored.
Q: What would you say are the main challenges facing women in IT presently and how do we overcome them?
A: I believe that knowing what we are worth to an organisation and believing in that worth is a challenge. If we can understand that we won’t be embarrassed to celebrate success and put ourselves in positions that appear to be out of our reach.
Q: How do you relax after a stressful day?
A: I love Karaoke for letting off steam. If only I could sing in real life as well as I do in my head!
Q: What do you enjoy most about your role and working with SUSE?
A: I work with SUSE as one of your partners and I love that enthusiasm the organization has. It makes it great to be working with you.
Q: What advice would you give someone looking to start working in your sector?
A: Go out and meet as many people as you can. It’s a small industry and we are all connected in some way and so having a good network is invaluable.