Q&A with Josephine Turner
Exclusive Trusted Magazine Q&A with Josephine Turner
How could you describe your career path in a few words?
My career path right after graduating from the University of the Philippines at Los Banos was shaped by people who believed in me and engaged me for so many opportunities. I was a government employee starting as the Luntiang Lumad Project Manager under the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist and later on became the Indigenous Peoples Development Program (IPDP) Manager under the Office of the Governor of Sarangani Province, Philippines. Those years of public service, empowering community-based leaders and team members, increased civic engagement of the Indigenous Peoples along with our leaders have kept me grounded even if I immigrated to the USA to have my own family. Working in a non-profit organization in downtown Atlanta before becoming a fulltime Mom made me find the value diversity and inclusion, advocacy for social justice as well as representation of immigrants. Over the years, I serve as Board Member for various non-profit organizations where I am able to leverage my knowledge and skills in project, program and portfolio management. These experiences have made me qualify and earn some global professional credentials from the Project Management Institute (PMI) that paved the way for me to establish my own ACT International Consulting, LLC.
What was your most challenging experience and how it has changed your mindset?
While working in the government in the Philippines, I was challenged to vote for someone that I do not like and retain my work. My contract was put on hold because I did not compromise my personal values and individual right to vote for whoever I wanted. I took a bold step of getting out in that environment and joined the opposition political campaign team that eventually won the majority vote. That experience changed my mindset. I took courage to be not under anyone’s control for the choices I make for my personal life and the future of my professional career. I told myself that I am government employee and every penny I earned was a result of hard work and is not the personal money of anyone who thinks that the resources of the government are at their disposal just because they have the political power. I felt empowered and proud to stand up for what I believe in, shared my aspirations for the new leadership and came back to the same grounds with so much hope that we can hold our leaders accountable and have a good governance for all.
What’s the key success factor for a female entrepreneur in cross-cultural context based on your experience?
I belong to the Blaan Indigenous Peoples group of the Philippines. I am a strong advocate for diversity and inclusion, representation and people empowerment. I believe that my key success factor as a female entrepreneur is understanding and embracing my own cultural diversity, my own values and ethics that I apply whenever I am engaged for an initiative either locally or internationally. I respect position of anyone, but I value more the person that happens to have a position and or authority. I always believe that at the end of the day, your position/title does not matter because
you are still a person with equal basic rights as anyone else. We might have gained skills and developed proficiency in a particular field of interest, but we should not think that we are above anyone else no matter where we go and in whatever culture we find ourselves being engaged as an entrepreneur. Stay being human above anything else. Nothing can beat the fact that you are just being you and everything else will fall into its right place at the right time.
Based on your experience, what’s the key success factor for a female leader/manager?
Being a female from an Indigenous Peoples group, an immigrant to the USA, a mom and a wife, and a business owner engaged in professional skills development training for globally recognized certifications and an online mentor, I would say that my key success factor was not giving up when situations are not favorable to what I intend to do. Being agile, resilient, dynamic, innovative and passionate about life-long learning molded my servant leadership and managerial style. For whatever role I do, I wear proudly the hat that represents that organization and the organizational values I adhere too. There is still a great disparity of women in leadership roles and especially for women of color. My mindset is that … when no one will give an opportunity for me, I surely can create an opportunity for myself. I founded my ACT International Consulting, LLC when I became a Project Management Professional (PMP) and started as a freelance PMP trainer for various certification training companies. Starting March of 2021, I collaborate with Eduhubspot (globally known professional certification training company) serving as its Southeast Asia Program Director and expanding our reach to serve professionals seeking to be certified by the PMI, etc.