Katarína Bolemant: From Programming to Leadership

Beginning as a fresh graduate and working her way up to the position of Chief Product Officer at Evolveum, Katarína Bolemant, who leads the development team, shares her experience of working in a male-dominated field.

Katarína, you have completed many successful projects and have a lot of product development experience in the IGA field. Have you encountered any particular challenges as a woman working in the IT industry, and if so, how have you overcome them?

Beginnings are always the hardest. When I was a student, there were only few women studying anything related to IT in Slovakia. Due to this fact, there were sometimes doubts raised about whether IT is an area women can excel in. As a graduate who was just at the beginning of her career, I experienced such challenges a couple of times, but I did not get discouraged and tried to learn from my experience. I learned that the best way to overcome any doubts is to work hard and prove one’s expertise.

I’d say it’s a lot about the individual people you surround yourself with. I was lucky to join a company like Evolveum, where at the beginning I was the only woman in our development team and also the youngest member. Yet, everyone has been very friendly and supportive since day one.

Have you since then observed any shifts or improvements in gender diversity within the IT industry throughout your career? If so, what do you attribute these changes to?

In the past, women were basically told beginning in primary school that IT was not for them. I see a positive shift here, as there are more women studying and working in IT than ever before. It could be a result of the field changing a lot and some gender balance efforts in society. In my view, this positive change will progress, and we will see more and more women in IT.

What advice would you offer to women aspiring to pursue careers in IT, based on your own experiences and insights gained throughout your career?

Don’t believe in stereotypes, and just go after your dreams. Also, the IT field is very diverse. Choose what you really like doing. In many cases, it can be very creative work that will give you a great opportunity to grow.

Even if you start out studying something different at university, maybe one day you will realize IT is for you. It’s never too late to change your mind and start to focus on IT or whatever you think could improve your career prospects.
I wish you good luck!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.