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It’s definitely a whirlwind in the tech industry as it is ever evolving and changing, but I absolutely love it! – An interview with Georgina Hopkinson

Georgie is an ambassador for Women Rock, and an agile coach at OVO energy. Her interest in coaching started during her time volunteering as a ChildLine counsellor for the NSPCC. She has a genuine passion for coaching individuals and teams to increase motivation, team effectiveness but most importantly, increase happiness in the workplace. She’s fallen into the tech world through her passion for coaching but now thrives off the excitement of working in an ever-evolving industry of highly skilled professionals. She’s spoken at Agile MeetUps and is speaking at Agile on the Beach this summer to share her experiences and enthusiasm for working in an Agile way.

From marketing consultant to agile coach how did you get into technology?

I left university pretty much not knowing what I wanted to do, but being open to learn new things and see what opportunities were out there. So I joined a large financial services organisation and worked my way up. My role just before I became an Agile Coach was in marketing as a project consultant, I was managing part of the marketing side of a large tech project (moving all our docs online). The team I was working within happened to be an Agile tech team and I felt so in awe of the knowledge and skills of the developers and loved working with them and being able to learn from them, I then started working as an Agile Coach and never looked back. It’s definitely a whirlwind in the tech industry as it is ever evolving and changing, but I absolutely love it!

What is your role as Agile Coach?

As an Agile Coach I am responsible for helping teams and organisations to be the best they can be. Just to caveat that, by ‘best’ I mean the happiest team who are building the right thing so the customer’s happy, building it right so it’s of high quality, and trying to increase the cadence of delivery (due to this ever changing market we are living in, we want to try and stay ahead!) I do this by coaching, teaching, mentoring and facilitating… I mean, there’s a bit more to it, so feel free to contact me if you want me to go into more detail.

What advice would you give to younger women in school?

I think young women, and men (particularly when I was at school) had no idea of the exciting careers out there, particularly in the tech industry. There are some awesome games available that can teach them to code, there are also some really exciting programmes that teach young people to code. I would say, just take all of these opportunities! Instead of hopping on Instagram or Facebook when you go on your phones, go onto Kodable or any one of the other coding games – there is a massive range from basic to more advanced and there are reviews online so find one that you enjoy. This is an incredible skill to have, even if you don’t want to be a developer, if you decide one day to start your own business, imagine being able to simply make your own website or even an awesome new app to get people engaged?

What is the biggest success in your career?

My biggest success is probably being chosen to speak at Agile On The Beach which I’m really excited for this summer. However, when I look back over my career, my proudest moments are when I’ve been able to make someone’s’ work life a little happier or easier.

What is your favourite quote?

‘The definition of genius is taking the complex and making it simple.’ – Albert Einstein.

Who is your role model?

As an Agile Coach, it’s probably Henrik Kniberg as he really embraces the above quote.

If you could change anything within the industry, what would you do and why?

I would introduce talk of ‘feelings’ into the workplace, I would want to know how people feel about organisational decisions and team decisions, even about decisions on what code to use, for example, because only then will we be able to truly work together in line with our values with true empathy for one another.

How can we get more women into tech careers from your experience?

For me, seeing women in these roles helps. So more women who have made it into the tech industry should be going to schools and teaching girls that not only is this a train that they should get on because it’s awesome, but also that it’s one they can get on as it’s accessible to them!


Thanks Georgie


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