This blog is part of our on-going Women in Technology series.
Alicia Marke is a Regional Director with the business development team and is based out of the London office. She has over five years of experience in the eDiscovery world and is a certified Relativity sales professional. She is part of the Women in eDiscovery network and has a bachelor’s degree in Sports Studies from the University of Hertfordshire. To Alicia, the best part of working with Consilio is the diversity in people and open mindsets.
How did you get into this industry?
Like most people who enter this industry, I didn’t plan it! Anyone who knows me knows I love my fitness and used to be a personal trainer in London. That was great for the first four years, but I soon grew tired of the early wake-up times. The first time I voiced this to one of my clients, he happened to offer me a job to work in the hardcopy business as a relationship manager. After a year in that role, I soon discovered a more interesting department on the second floor, so I started to offer my free time to assist one of the top performers, who happened to be a woman. I checked in on tasks before the morning, wrote emails during my lunchtime, did account planning during the weekends, and loved it. I was soon offered a job in the same role and have never looked back.
What were some pivotal moments in your career that helped to get you to where you are today?
There has never been a “pivotal moment,” but I am a strong advocate of hard work pays off. In the early part of my career, I would utilize every spare moment I had between meetings, the commute, and the gym to learn about eDiscovery and how it applies to different law aspects. I also had, and continue to have, some incredible mentors along the way. Each of them had a pivotal role in my development, and for that, I am thankful. Working in this industry can be overwhelming at times, but putting in the effort to learn from my amazing colleagues has been a huge part of my success. I asked every person the question, “Why?” – I am truly grateful for their patience!
Have you ever noticed a time in your career where your gender proved to differentiate you?
I think myself lucky to some extent. I started this career surrounded by very strong, focused, and independent women, where gender in the workplace wasn’t an issue. Ultimately, the company’s environment is sculpted by the board and company values, and thankfully I’ve always been part of companies that value gender equality. That’s not to say I haven’t had my share of gender bias, but because of this foundation of having strong women around me, I have always challenged those situations.
I do think the higher up the chain you go, there is undoubtedly an apparent concentration of men to women, but I can positively say there has been a shift in this pattern since I started my career. Although yes, it is still likely that a company board will predominantly be made up of men, I’m glad to have connections with the women making this change.
What is your advice for someone working in a predominately male workplace?
Believe in yourself; you were chosen to do the role based on your skills, experience, and knowledge, making you the best person for the position. Own your role, continue finding ways to expand your skills, and be confident enough to challenge inappropriate situations when needed.
What do you think companies could do to motivate more women to pursue careers in technology?
This is difficult because as long as you have the right person who can complete the role to the best of their ability, it doesn’t matter what gender takes the position. That being said, I strongly feel that if you create an environment where men and women can feel comfortable starting families and can equally be supported in pursuing a career, then this question will no longer need answering.