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“When all feels like it is lost, don’t be afraid” | Interview with Arina Badhan

“When all feels like it is lost, don’t be afraid” | Interview with Arina Badhan

Oct 20, 2020

Please welcome our new member: Arina Badhan. Arina is an Enterprise Architect at AstraZeneca. She is an amazing women of STEM and strong within herself through showing the bias opinion about women is not true: women are strong in business and leadership. Have a read of her welcome blog and get to know this outstanding women that we warmly welcome to the Rising Network.


Tell us about the work that you do and what led you onto this career path?

I am an Enterprise Architect, just as a building architect would create plans and technical drawings for buildings,  I create organisational designs and blueprints to enable business goals through technology.  I came into Computer Science following advice from my farther. My early career focused on programming new technologies, I naturally progressed into Enterprise Architecture to bridge the business and technology gap, join the dots for executive stakeholders and step in, advise on, and solve complex strategic enterprise-level problems to realise business benefits.


Tell us about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career.

One of the most significant moments of my career was at Travis Perkins where I started my role as a Solutions Architect and then accelerated over a period of two years into a position where I reported to Group CIO/Head of Architecture with accountability for the architectural design of a new £100M+ ERP platform for use by six brands.   I played an instrumental role in changing a siloed culture by uniting IT with the business, and successfully communicated the architecture vision gaining company wide buy-in


What advice would you give someone starting in your field of work?

I would suggest that they focus not just on understanding the latest technology, but also in ensuring they master interpersonal skills. Much of the work that needs to be done involves bringing others on a journey, changing mindsets, understanding stakeholders concerns and applying creative, out of box thinking to technology and business solutions.


What do you think is the most significant barrier to women in business and leadership?

I think the most significant barrier to women in business and leadership is the unconscious bias around a woman’s ability and commitment to the role. For example can she meet the demands of a job compared to male counterparts, will she have to take time off for children, strong opinions or challenging views are seen as aggressive rather than assertive, women often have to dress down to be taken seriously, and women often have to be ‘one of the boys’ to be accepted.


Who is your female role model, and why?

My female role model is Jacinda Arden the Prime Minister of New Zealand, who is a breath of fresh air in today’s political world. She represents a leadership style that is strong whilst showing compassion and empathy to all. Her approach to the Covid crisis was to focus on the team of 500m people, she herself took a paycut to show that it meant her too, also her approach to one of the worst anti-muslim terrorist attacks was to declare New Zealand was not a Muslim hating country and in doing so became respected globally including Pakistan. Finally she continuously promotes women and their abilities, and is a great example of someone who successfully balances her work and family life.


What is the most important lesson life has taught you?

When all feels like it is lost, don’t be afraid, use that time creatively to re-imagine yourself to become your authentic self, through self awareness.


What do you do for self-care?

Listening to music which helps me to imagine new possibilities.  Exercising, walking in nature and meditation.


Please give us a quote on why you decided to join the Rising Network as a member and how you feel the network will support you/your organisation.

“I would look to become part of a like minded network separate from work, which I can use to grow myself and others”

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