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Kamila hankiewicz

Managing Director, Untrite

 

And - Managing Director of Girls in Tech London Chapter

Act as if you know what you're talking about and always over-deliver.

What do you do?

I'm an entrepreneur. I am Managing Director of Untrite (untrite.com) which provides cognitive automation solutions for high growth businesses. I focus on business development and business strategy.

 

I'm also a Managing Director of an international NGO Girls in Tech (girlsintech.org) London Chapter - in my NGO role I help other girls and women to get into technology or those who are already here - to develop their careers to reach more senior, leadership roles. 

Why did you choose this field?

"If you're innovating, chances are you will be appreciated."

I studied Business Management, but I've been always fascinated by technology and how democratic it is. Your success is in major part based on merit. At the time of my studies, I was very fascinated by Richard Branson and his bold attitude towards innovating and disrupting calcified industries. 

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

Starting two sustainable businesses, asking for more than I thought it's possible and securing very lucrative deals with the clients.

 

I think age doesn't really matter (it may matter a bit more in conservative environments like banking, but it's slowly changing). What matters is your self-confidence and reliability. Act as if you know what you're talking about and always overdeliver. 

Why do you love working in STEM?

"Everybody can start their own tech business."

The entry cost is relatively low. What you need is a computer (or even a mobile phone serving as a computer), idea, lots of willpower, a lot of naivety (so you don't realise upfront that it's going to be that hard!) and persistence to overcome obstacles.

 

Each day is different and I feel like I'm in the power of creating my own luck and destiny.  If I feel like focusing on business development - I do that. If I feel like I want to create a new product / do a brainstorming - I do that. I have almost all the power to choose what I do each day. 

Best advice for the next generation

Just because someone is telling you that it can't be done or it won't work, doesn't mean that you shouldn't try doing that. There are countless examples of companies and people who proved others wrong. Airbnb or BlaBlaCar once seemed a crazy idea - letting stranger in your home/car, but it worked and became a huge success. Be fearless and persistent.

Fun fact

I also have a side business - Japana (japana.uk) selling Japanese knives and designer homeware inspired by Japan. An interesting fact: female Samurai existed and they were called Onna-Bugeisha. Hollywood doesn't mention much about it but these ladies were just as fearsome and kick-ass as their male counterparts.