At Adobe, women are inspiring change and empowering the next generation.
With programs such as Women’s Leadership Council and Women Unlimited, social forums, networking breakfasts, volunteerism, mentoring, and more, Adobe women’s initiatives are a vital part of the company’s commitment to supporting women across the organization.
Passion is contagious. And the women at Adobe are bringing it in spades. From embracing leadership roles to initiating social change, these women aren’t just doing their jobs — they’re inspiring a world of future leaders.
Regional director of sales • Singapore, Southeast Asia
There aren’t a lot of people who look forward to a 5 a.m. conference call. But for Vicky, this call was different. A group of women leaders from all around the world would be sharing insights, offering career-changing advice, and forming a network of peer-to-peer connections as part of the Adobe Leadership Circle.
“We don’t get extraordinary by working alone,” Vicky says. “Adobe gives female leaders the opportunity to come together to learn, develop, and bring change to the organization.” The new yearlong program, which involves a curriculum, speakers, regular check-ins, and professional coaching, is designed to support the development of rising women leaders.
“It’s been one of the most amazing journeys. These are the women who may be the next Fortune 100 or Fortune 500 leaders,” Vicky says. “We’re able to bounce ideas off each other and talk through the challenges and successes of our careers.”
For Vicky, it’s just one of many ways Adobe has supported her career growth. In a little less than five years, she has gone from leading the channel organization to heading one of the most diverse regions in the world. “I’ve had the most wonderful ecosystem to support my development. My career gives me an incredible opportunity to continue learning what drives the creative economy in Southeast Asia.”
Vicky’s career advice: “There’s a mantra that has stayed with me since primary school. It’s the Latin phrase ‘agite statim,’ which means, ‘do it now.’”
Executive assistant • Maidenhead, United Kingdom
A few years ago, a snippet in an Adobe communication caught Dawn’s eye. It encouraged corporate social responsibility and volunteerism within the company.
“At the time, we didn’t have a corporate social responsibility team here,” she says. “So I pursued it and started one myself. Now I lead an action team, and I’ve helped form other teams in London and Edinburgh.”
As team leader, Dawn organizes charity fundraisers, promotes Adobe Youth Voices and other programs, and provides opportunities for local volunteerism within Adobe.
“I’m passionate about people,” Dawn says. “It’s just who I am, and giving back to the community is important to me.”
What’s more, it’s something she volunteers to do on top of her daily work as an executive assistant to a vice president. Dawn says she enjoys working with different teams and interacting with cultures from around the world. And during her 11 years at Adobe, she has followed a career path that has exposed her to departments from public relations to marketing and administration.
“This is a great company with so many opportunities,” Dawn says. “You might even look at an organization chart and say, ‘There’s no job there for what I want to do.’ So you work with your manager to create it.”
Dawn’s career advice: “Don’t be afraid of failure. Bravery is a good thing when it comes to your career.”
Regional marketing manager for Central Europe & Emerging Markets • Munich, Germany
When Katrin looks back at the 16 years she’s been with Adobe, the words ‘flexibility’ and ‘growth’ come to mind.
“I’ve always had the opportunity to grow my career,” Katrin mentions. “As the company continues to transform, you are given the resources to develop yourself.”
Katrin attributes a huge part of her success at Adobe to networking and communication. “I think it’s important to get yourself a mentor, a person you can trust and whose opinion you value,” Katrin says. “It’s also important to build your network.”
On that note, Katrin leads the Adobe & Women program in Germany, Switzerland and Austria, where she’s dedicated towards helping other women grow within the company. For Katrin, the Adobe & Women program offers networking, training and mentorship opportunities. “It’s a great forum especially for new colleagues to build their network and to get connected with other women at Adobe,” she says. “It also facilitates the exchange of ideas and experiences.”
Katrin’s career advice: “Be flexible, keep learning, cease opportunities when they come along, and find yourself a mentor who provides advice and support in pursuing your career aspirations. Don’t forget to also speak about your successes so others can learn from them.”
Customer experience program manager • San Francisco, California, USA
Bing’s journey to Adobe began with a phenomenal woman, her mom. In 1989, during the Tiananmen Square massacre in China, Bing’s mother faced a difficult decision — stay in China and risk her family’s safety or relocate to Canada and start from scratch.
She chose the latter and eventually found herself at Adobe as a software engineer. “This is a legacy story, which is really cool,” says Bing. “At one point, my mom said, ‘You should apply to do reception work at Adobe.’”
Little did Bing know that in a few years, she would go from fielding calls in Ottawa to spearheading social media strategy for Adobe’s customer support team in San Francisco.
“I was able to carve my own path in a big company,” Bing says. “People have a lot of misconceptions about the ability to do that.”
One of Bing’s biggest successes was helping create the Adobe support handle on Twitter. “We started looking at how our customers were using Twitter for support, and we created @AdobeCare, which reached 12,000 followers in just a few years.”
What’s more, Bing is committed to passing on what she’s learned. She recently helped bring the Technovation Challenge to Adobe. This program empowers high school girls to come up with an idea for an Android™ application, build it, and then pitch it to venture capitalists.
“I’m so passionate about helping other young women realize their potential,” Bing says. “I love that Adobe provides opportunities to give back.”
Bing’s career advice: “Be open to change and explore new things. When you learn where your forte lies, the opportunities are endless.”
Channel director • Barcelona, Spain
When Carmen thinks back to when she joined Adobe eight years ago, she remembers a much different company. For Carmen, that’s what makes Adobe a great fit.
“We’ve grown and innovated so fast in so many new areas,” Carmen says. “In the past, I had to move to different companies to do new things. At Adobe, everything is moving around you.”
One of the opportunities Carmen has enjoyed is using the Adobe education benefit to get a master’s degree in international marketing. She has applied her learning to her work as a channel director overseeing Spain and Portugal. “Right now, I can’t imagine myself in any other place. There are so many possibilities at Adobe.”
At the same time, Carmen is a mother of three — well acquainted with the challenges of work-life balance. “When you have kids, you become more mature in your attitude toward work. You learn to stop when you have to.”
Over the course of her 20 years in the technology industry, Carmen has been able to weigh the pros and cons of working at various organizations. She says the lack of hierarchy and the presence of “innovation DNA” at Adobe are two differentiators. “You feel that you can change things from inside here,” she says. “And that is very, very difficult at other companies.”
Carmen’s career advice: “When you get older, you want to look back on your life and be happy about it. You want to say, ‘I did it, and I did a lot of it myself.’”