For decades, if not centuries, every successful business has understood that its most valuable asset is its employees. Because of the seismic …
Solange Abou Nasr
Strategic Account Manager – Banking & Financial Services, VMware
Solange Abou Nasr, Strategic Account Manager – Banking & Financial Services at VMware, is a seasoned Financial Services and Payments Solutions Expert. Married and a mother of 3 young children, Solange is passionate about banking and financial services.
The pioneering leader is driven by positivity and passion for positively impacting the community and people’s lives. Solange developed herself as a Relationship Recovery Specialist and a Customer Retention Professional; she started as a Technology Sales Executive and transformed into a Strategist and a Relationship Management Enthusiast.
“I was fortunate to have worked in depth on many solutions and delivered successful innovative Projects within the banking and financial services eco-system, in Cards, Loans, Cash management and Remittance, ATMs, Banking Systems and Infrastructure, Biometric Onboarding Solutions, Customer & Employee Experience, Contact Centre and Unified Communications solutions, and currently leading the way in Muticloud adoption and Cloud Transformation Journeys,” she says.
“I trust that technology has a direct impact on individuals’ lives and this is what transforms my job into a mission to make people’s lives better and easier.”
On the Social Aspect, Solange is a Women Empowerment Advocate, a Motivational Coach, and a great supporter of Women in Technology. “I am happy to invest my positive attitude and approach in my daily tasks and most recently to leverage my passion into Co-Leading the Women POD (Power of Difference) under VMware DEI initiative in METNA region.”
Overcoming Barriers & Becoming a Leader
As a Female leader and specifically in the IT Environment, vastly governed and dominated by men, Solange has been challenged by the Social Expectations and Stereotypes that kept Women in a Glass Frame, defining her priorities to her family and children. Considering that family and children are a great priority to all individuals, whether they were men or women, “I worked hard to prove that I can set my “life balance” to be successful at work and as a mother. And i imposed on my surroundings to judge me by my results and deliverables and not by my gender and confirming that Success is gender-agnostic”
As part of her passion for giving back to the community, Solange supports talents in women around her. She offers every possible support, whether by giving them a piece of advice, coaching, sharing her experience both success and failures to help them accept their weaknesses, or sometimes just being by their side to cheer for their success and encourage their wins. For the pioneering leader, leadership means leading by example. Solange observed and understood throughout her journey that she could not win alone, and having a supportive team is extremely important. “When you win as a team, you have to ability to repeat this win over and over and grow the potential of your organization by leveraging this experience in different use cases,” explains Solange. “As a leader, I learned to trust the team working with me, trust that they will succeed rather doubt if they will be able to deliver. Giving them the space to shine in what they do best.” Being grounded has made Solange an approachable leader; she has culminated into a leader who welcomes her team’s inputs and advice with the will to pivot her strategy based on their feedback, encouraging their critical thinking. “I don’t shy away of apologizing if I make a mistake, and I learn from my mistakes.”
As a leader, Solange acknowledges talent management skill is fundamental to identify the strength in each of her team members, so she can assign them the tasks they can succeed in the most. “I remember to recognize the team’s contributions, I thank them where needed, give them the credit where it is due, and most importantly, I do care about the team as individuals.”
Talking About Digitalization
Being a new-age leader, Solange feels that a traditional Banker knows in and out all the operational challenges that they may face by adopting new technologies and new policies, which sometimes hinders their decision to adopt new approaches. For instance, a banker knows how an Agile Methodology works well in some projects and fails in other areas like a Credit Card Product launch. They know how a Public Cloud can be adopted for some applications but is not recommended for other heavy-load ones that they may prefer to keep on-premises on a private cloud. However, it takes one person to lead and ride the new wave for others to follow.
The Courage and the Passion for the adoption of Digitization in banks today, comes from within the technology leader’s mentality. Depending on how digital Savvy they are, and how they are able to “act like a technology leader at a bank, rather a banker in a technology seat.”
Towards the Future
For Solange, success is a simple experiment and a humble Journey. Her success criteria are based on Personal Goals that she sets. “Yet every time I reach to that goal, I discover that I still have a long way to go, and I set new ones with more complex expectations.” She adds, “What I confirm as a success today, is the ability to maintain my life balance that assures the right distribution of priorities in my life allocated between my work, my children, my active life, my hobbies, my friends, and my community support…etc”
Women in general are criticized for their emotion’s abundance, Solange used this to her advantage as she developed her emotional intelligence, helping herself manage her daily life, understanding her customer challenges and needs, reading the market dynamics, supporting her team when needed, and bringing the best out of them.
“My focus at the moment is on leveraging my skills, my knowledge, and my expertise in supporting the Women Community around me, and mainly by encouraging young girls to consider IT as their Career. Where they can invest their energy, their passion, and foresee an ambitious growth,” adds Solange.
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