Today, women are climbing the ladder of success with a true determination and hard work. But the scene was not at all same a few years back, when we had to search really hard to complete a list of successful women in business. Today, there are so many qualified women in the pipeline who are proving to be a great example for young generation women folk.
These are the women, who have become successful in their industry by raising their profile, and women who are gaining visibility and credibility, and outlining specific areas they should focus their efforts, improving their technical and leadership skills.
Crain’s CFO of the Year Awardee and also honored at Vista Maria’s 2012 Celebrating Women Event, for her achievements and community involvement, Maureen Huber, CFO and COO at Stratus Video is setting an example before all the ambitious women out there.
Maureen leads Stratus Video in the areas of Finance, Human Resources, IT, and Operations, having over 20 years of experience leading through organizational change, international expansion, and strategic transactions. She oversees software engineering, IT, language operations, finance and human resources for Stratus Video. Her primary role is to lead an amazing team of people, set priorities and strive to exceed client expectations.
A first generation college graduate, Maureen earned her Bachelor of Science from Michigan State University and returned to earn her MBA from the Broad School of Business in 2010. While working and paving her own way through college, Maureen experienced every functional area of accounting and progressed to a leadership position very early in her career.
Determination and Hardwork
It all started when a young girl, Maureen witnessed the introduction of a Commodore Vic 20. One of the first personal computers in the market. She was truly fascinated by the computers at an early age. She tried at learning various programming languages. Though, facing failure in learning them Maureen knew that she will make her career in the software industry.
Maureen says, “Business and finance came more naturally to me so I focused on those skills and looked to lead technology organizations so I can be involved with development and the use cases for solutions.”
Maureen’s tenure as a Corporate Controller of a publicly traded technology company provided her the experience to transition to a subsidiary of a multinational software conglomerate as CFO, becoming the CEO in a few years following the acquisition by private equity.
She had to face challenges, but they failed to stop her in achieving her goals. She experienced the changes technology has acquired in the last years. According to Maureen, the most profound change she has observed is the adoption and use of technology. As it is in the everyday lives via mobile and smart devices.
While narrating the challenges Maureen asserts, “The biggest challenge has been managing growth. Being able to provide tech enabled services when clients need us. Our private equity and banking relationships were there to support our growth, but finding the right people and being able to scale quickly is demanding and just simply hard work.”
There is one more challenge for a woman, and that is to keep a perfect balance between personal and professional life. When questioned about the same, Maureen reverts, “Balance implies a 1:1 counter point or tradeoff. I’ve always approached it as professional and personal integration. Setting and meeting priorities is a very fluid dynamic and trying to balance just seems complicated. So being able to flow with the personal and professional demands as they arise is what worked for me.”
To win over her challenges, there were three things that kept Maureen motivated, knowing that they were improving lives through better communication, their corporate culture, as they are all very passionate people who encourage one another, and the most important one is – someone told her that they couldn’t do it!
Stratus Video, Connecting Areas of HealthCare
Stratus Video is a technology-driven company that is changing the way patients and medical professionals connect across all areas of health care. It is the largest and fastest growing video remote languages services company in the world.
Stratus Video Language Services has four proprietary products, namely Stratus Video Interpreting, a video remote interpretation product; Stratus Audio, an over-the-phone interpretation service; Stratus InPerson, Uber-like solution for onsite interpreting; and Stratus Word, a solution for document translation.
Led by a team of dedicated individuals having decades of experience in the health care and technology markets, Stratus Video is committed to enabling visual connections and vital conversations.
Stratus Video serves a real purpose that makes a difference in hundreds of thousands of lives each month. Being able to access an interpreter on demand at patient bedside via a secure video connection, improves patient outcomes while helping healthcare providers be in regulatory compliance.
Stratus Video has a team of passion people. From software engineers to interpreters everyone at Stratus Video is equally motivated to be there when clients need them, which requires technology and people.
As Maureen says, Stratus Video will continue the growth and ability to scale maintaining high quality standards. Maureen foresees a shortage of qualified medical interpreters, but she knows very well how to tackle that. Stratus Video has developed its own Stratus Video University to train and educate bi-lingual individuals to become interpreters.
Valuable Advice From a “True Business Diva”
Put in the WORK – It’s called labor for a reason. It takes effort and dedication some of it may be mundane or you may not have a sense of its importance but it is tasked to you. Do the work, exceed the expectation by being present in everything you do- like it’s the most important task on the planet.
Ask Questions – Being naturally curious fosters continuous improvement in oneself and for the organization. Having a full view of a project or task will help develop overall business acumen and give context to your contribution.
Advocate for yourself – Whether it’s being assigned to a project or asking for pay increase; advocate for yourself with basis. Be sure to do the homework, ground the request in facts and basis not thoughts and feelings. Consider the objections and have prepared non emotional counterpoints to consider. If the result is unfavorable, ask for feedback – how could I have approached this differently, what do I need to do to achieve my goal.
It’s not about you – Approach every action, every day with the organization and it’s goals in mind.