Dana Wyne of Randstad Technologies Talks Being a Working Mom
Dana Wyne is the director of technology solutions at Randstad. Julia Miglets, our social media strategist, sat down with Dana to learn about what it's like to be a working mom at Randstad.
Julia Miglets (JM): Tell me about your role at Randstad on their deal pursuit team.
Dana Wyne (DW): The nature of my role is twofold, if not multiple folds. I am responsible for managing the team, providing an overall strategy, and supervising what we do, how we do it, and what the best practices are.
JM: How did you get to Randstad?
DW: I got a call from a vice president at Randstad who I used to work with, and we had a great working relationship. He recruited me out of my old company to join Randstad. Talk about the power of networking and having great relationships with people throughout your career!
JM: What were you doing before?
DW: I was performing the same job at our previous company. I was with them for about 12 years, and I had many roles. I served as a strategic account director and as a business development manager when I first started with them in 2002, so I wore many hats there over the years.
JM: What is it about working at Randstad that you truly enjoy?
DW: I love the people, first and foremost. We have an amazing team—a diverse mix with different backgrounds—but everybody is super helpful.
I come from a sports background and equate things to either basketball or soccer. Everybody on my team knows how to play everyone else's positions. When he or she gets the ball, they're able to go to the net; then, everyone else backfills them and takes on their role. We've got a strong and dynamic team that works well together.
There's a strong team mentality, and then, of course, I enjoy the nature of the work. Being in consulting—specifically around IT services—is interesting to me.
JM: Would you say you're in a positive work environment?
DW: I am it's supportive and dynamic in the nature of the work; it keeps me on my toes.
JM: I also understand you got back from maternity leave. Is there any advice you have for moms who juggle work and motherhood?
DW: I've learned the hard way. Before going on maternity leave, most women juggle a lot of plates, and I definitely utilized the tools I had. But I didn't rely on them. I was able to manage my workloads alone. I will admit that I underestimated the immediate effect of becoming a new mom on my work life. Until I really started to utilize the technology tools available to me, balancing work/(baby)life left me quite frazzled.
Baby brain is a real thing. Not everybody experiences baby brain, and I know it's unique to every mom out there. I learned to rely on tools to keep these plates spinning successfully. These are job plates and household plates.
Use your tools, make lists, and take notes; it's a great way to keep up. I use Microsoft OneNote. Before, I would be able to remember things; now I can't remember what I did three days ago, and I've had to rely on my calendar and reminders.
Another thing I learned (the hard way) is that you need to take care of yourself and not be too hard on yourself. Realize it's a huge adjustment to go from not having a kid and working hardcore to still be expected to have the same level of production after having a child.
Sometimes I'll raise my hand and say, "This [project] is going to take me a little bit more time to bring up to speed because I can't do things the same way as I did before." Use tools that you have available to reach out and ask for help.
My management team has been supportive of my pregnancy and of me juggling a job, doctor's appointments, and all that type of stuff.
My daughter just turned eight months old. I work from home, and I have a nanny. I'm fortunate to be able to have those luxuries, but they create a whole other set of challenges in that there's that distraction available to me at any time. I've had to learn new ways to segment myself and give myself time to go see her in and among my meetings but still be able to be a highly productive employee.
JM: Would you say Randstad is a work environment conducive to being a parent?
DW: Absolutely. The support I got from my management team and my internal team when I broke the news was amazing; it made the whole process of being a new mom and the craziness that goes along with that so much easier. I knew I had the support of my team.
I was halfway through my pregnancy, and I was being strategic with my management team. By the time I went out on maternity leave, I knew I could leave and not have to worry about my job. My team and clients were taken care of. I could concentrate on my family and then be able to come back to my job.
JM: Was there anything you had to learn on the job that you may have had to do differently from your previous position?
DW: Every company comes with its own toolset, which is the biggest learning curve for people coming on to my team. Our toolset is what I spend the most time training people on—best practices, what an A-to-Z day looks like, etc.
Managing the strategic direction of my team and being able to go through process improvement makes our jobs better, faster, and easier.
JM: What positive aspects do female employees bring to the table at companies like Randstad?
DW: I have worked at companies that are heavily weighted with men—especially from a management perspective. Forty-seven percent of people in management positions are women, and I'm not surprised. I think having leadership be almost 50% female has helped shape the attitude toward working moms at the company. This leadership enables moms like me who have a lot to contribute to the company.
I probably would have left my previous company after I gave birth because I wouldn't have had the support structure that I have at Randstad. I think having as many women as we do in leadership positions and in key positions throughout the company is bringing in a lot of talented, bright women who want to have a long-term career. I can't imagine being a new mom and completing the kind of work I do at any other company.
As part of the Randstad Technologies Solutions practice Deal Pursuit Team, Dana is responsible for working with their national branch network, Strategic Account teams, and internal PMO to align industry-leading solutions in consulting, projects, and outsourcing offerings with our client's key, strategic technology initiatives.
Julia Miglets is a graduate of Youngstown State University. She studied Professional and Technical Writing and wishes to pursue a career in editing.