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Q&A with Mianda Hatton

Updated: Jul 20, 2023

Exclusive Trusted Magazine Q&A with Mianda Hatton , Business Development Director @Sodeico Development

How could you describe your career path in few words?

My career path has been a journey toward self-discovery. I made my entry into the professional arena straight out of college through an internship and have ever since been learning how resilience and personal development are key toward accomplishments.

In a complex professional context such as in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, influenced by a patriarchal culture and a decades-long war in the Eastern part of the country, with a very high unemployment rate, one can only imagine the challenges faced by a 23 years old young woman.

I have not been lucky to be held by the hand through any form of mentorship nor sponsorship at my debuts and was not welcomed by older and more experienced women thus, I had to learn and deliver. Theories tell us that one designs a career path based on dreams and ambitions but now I know that the journey starts when you stop dreaming and start working. Continuously acquiring new set of skills while moving forward enables to materialize dreams. After decades of working for different International Organisations such as Catholic Relief Services; International Population Services amongst others other, I am proud that my professional challenges have today, pushed me to work harder, filling my skills’gaps through self-development which has enable me to successfully occupy decisional positions and no transfer knowledge to younger generations.

What was your most challenging experience, and it has changed your mindset?

My most challenging experience was to be victim of harassments at the beginning of my career at the workplace, not really knowing how to address it by denouncing. Fear is a big weakness and ignorance feeds our fears. Most women not denouncing the different forms of harassment is due to lack of knowledge of their rights and confidence in the policies and structures in place to protect them, I was amongst those women! My mindset was to face my fear and fight abuses which resulted in becoming a pioneer defending equity and women’s rights within the world of work. For seven years, I have worked as country and regional representative of the International Council of Swedish Industries, implementing workplace programs promoting wellness and social dialogues at Multinationals in the Democratic Republic of Congo such as ABB, Atlas Copco, Volvo, Ericsson, Orange etc…

When you get surprised by unusual or uncertain context, what do you think?

When I encountered unusual and uncertain contexts, I tell myself, the challenge represents an opportunity to innovate and set standards. Another opportunity to shine!

We evolve in fast past dynamic environment in the world of work requiring agility and innovative mind to drive our progress. My career has been driven by creating innovative solutions as I have evolved in a very complex environment such as in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Approaching challenges as an opportunity to build upon is key here whether be for commercial purposes or further, toward sustainable community impact. The 4Ps in management is a very good approach in addressing uncertainties; One need to always put in perspective in their response: 1. The Purpose aimed which can require repositioning as an individual or as an organization. Whether be for profit or not keeping focus on the objectives and results to be achieved while engaging with stakeholders; 2. The People, human capital is the most important asset in addressing uncertainties as they will not only carry solutions but also be the direct beneficiaries of those solutions at a small or large scale. It is said that effective management starts and ends with people, so it is crucial to bring them on board to have different perspectives; 3. Processes; structured actions enable to reach better results and being able to measure performance. 4. The planet, more and more environmental impact is, thankfully, been taken into account around how enterprises align their business’ strategies but also how Additionally, Empathy and authenticity not only to better understand and manage teams but also beneficiaries of your work and impact positively settle to Mars!

Based on your experience, what’s the key success factor for a female leader / manager?

Being knowledgeable and use of emotional intelligence are crucial in being a good female leader. Personal awareness and self-management and being aware of your context enable you to adopt the appropriate leadership style to move things and people forward. These elements build inspiring leaders with clear vision and should be based on values and competency. Conflicts ‘resolution is also a very important skill as our environment are multicultural and leaders should take that into account individual particularities to develop organizational cultures.

Additionally, Empathy and authenticity are important soft skills to not only better understand and manage teams but also understand and respond to beneficiaries of one’s leadership to impact positively. The above have pushed me forward and helped me climb the ladder of my career to decisional positions and transform me to becoming the leader I am today while working in humanitarian and private sectors.

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