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  1. Blog
  2. Career Trajectories

Grow Where You’re Planted: 5 Women on Shaping Their Career Trajectories Within Their Companies

Each has been with her employer for more than a decade

Women laughing while working
Photo courtesy of Andrea Piacquadio

This article is part of InHerSight's Career Trajectories series. Women's career paths vary significantly. Hear from women themselves about the pivotal career decisions that have shaped their growth and success.

Coming from the job hopping generation, it’s sometimes hard to imagine being in one job for five years, let alone 10 or 20. But for this month’s Career Trajectories series, InHerSight spoke to women at our partner companies who’ve done just that, worked at their organizations for more than a decade. 

There are clear benefits to this path. You become an expert in your company, not to mention your role, and if your employer is supportive of your growth, you can gain new skills without the stress of job searching or starting a new job. 

Learn from these five women what career growth inside a company looks like. Spoiler: It’s not all ladder-climbing. The nonlinear career trajectory remains a common thread among women regardless of the number of times they change companies. 

5 women on shaping their career trajectories within their companies

Jennifer Bartus

Director, CRM Solutions at Radancy

What do you do?

I serve as our SME to answer questions, give demonstrations, and trainings both internally and externally to educate our clients and field teams on our product offerings. 

Additionally, I work closely with our clients, sales, and account service teams to assess client and industry needs and share those in a consumable format to our product and development teams.  This information is then used to assist in formulating our roadmap. As the roadmap is being developed, I also serve as a stakeholder to help refine problem statements and prioritize what features and functions should be delivered first. 

How did you get where you are?

I started in technology as part of a small software division that was part of a larger manufacturing company. That company was sold, and our division was eventually bought by a competitor. Being acquired by your competitor is a crazy ride; you go from poking holes in them to being friends. I was laid off during some downsizing years later, was unemployed for six months, and then was hired and have worked at Radancy since.   

What has most surprised you about your career?

That I landed in technology. I went to community college and had no background in tech. But I was determined and had several mentors throughout my career who gave me excellent advice. I took advantage of every opportunity presented to me, and even created a few of those opportunities on my own. It wasn't easy, and I wanted to give up more than once, but I'm glad I made the journey!

Sylvia Kuck

Vice President of Media Solutions at Radancy

What do you do?

I'm a vice president of media solutions at Radancy. I'm an SME within our media group, specializing in the programmatic ad tech portion of our unified platform. My days have a great deal of variety and may include directly working account teams or clients on their strategies, setting up training programs for our teams or working with my direct reports on building out strategies for our clients. Some projects allow me to work with our data science team deep diving into numbers while others are more about the holistic approach. I love the variety!

How did you get where you are?

My career has grown organically, starting in media research and moving through operations roles (creative traffic, team lead).  A later role focused on rolling out new products to account teams, which led me into account services. The experience allowed me to grow to a Regional VP, where I moved to our New York office owning a P&L.  My current opportunity leveraging my experience across media, account services, and operations is a natural fit.

What has most surprised you about your career?

I've had one employer (two counting an acquisition). When I started in 1999, I thought I would be at my job for a year or two. I didn't expect to find a company that continually challenges me with new opportunities. A group of coworkers who became family. Inspirational leadership. A company and people who have supported me through some of my greatest life challenges and helped me grow as a professional in this industry.

Courtney Chalmers

Vice President of Marketing at Boats Group

What do you do?

I’m the vice president of marketing. I’m responsible for the strategy, tactics, and programs that create interest, demand, and recognition for Boats Group's North American brands: Boat Trader, YachtWorld,, and Trident Funding.

How did you get where you are?

After graduating with a degree in digital media, I started my career as a graphic designer. Prior to that position, I had the opportunity to live abroad in Spain and Venezuela, where I taught digital media to local students. Upon returning to the U.S., I was fortunate to land an entry-level marketing role at Dominion Enterprises. I didn’t know it then, but this role marked the start of an incredible career in the boating industry. As a marketing coordinator, I set my sights on being a vice president. Through a winding path of marine-focused businesses, including web services, professional services, and marketplaces, I reached my goal. But, not without the support of my managers, mentors, and colleagues who gave me opportunities to grow.

What has most surprised you about your career?

Hands down, the people. There are few industries where the job and the passions are one and the same, but the boating industry affords us that luxury. 

The industry has the appeal of a small town, similar to the one I grew up in. It’s like having a family of a few thousand people. When something bad happens, you feel the support from every single person. When something great happens, you’ll probably be in the industry news!

Catrin Lewis

Head of Global Engagement and Internal Communications at Reward Gateway

What do you do?

I was once called an outlier in the internal communications world. I fully embrace that title. I don't play by the rules, and it's likely that I'll approach things in an unusual way. I find inspiration everywhere. I listen intently so I can learn and put those same learnings to use in my own world. I like to do things differently and I'll always do my best to ensure the audience has the best experience possible.

My career kicked off about six years ago. I was asked to help inform, educate, and engage our employees with our biggest story. Reward Gateway was about to sell for the third time to a private equity investor. As shareholders in our employee share program, they wanted to ensure employees felt fully informed and connected to the process. 

It was a massive campaign, the first time Reward Gateway has appointed anyone with the sole responsibility of engaging our employees. I got to be that person, and that campaign went on to be the trigger for my career in communications.

Since then, I've worked on multiple global communication programs across various businesses. Highlights have included the Reward Gateway’s global strategy campaign, Level Up Mental Health campaign, Diversity and Inclusion Discovery campaign, and global leadership communications. I have been a stakeholder and influencer in developing communication products such as SmartHub, SmartBlogs, Social Recognition, and Connect+ App.

I love to travel, which is great because it means being invited to speak about digital communication at events in places such as Vienna, Bulgaria, Germany, the U.S., and Romania is always a fun adventure for me. I also took a four-month sabbatical to live out some lifelong goals of experiencing more world culture and diverse experiences. 

 How did you get where you are?

I joined the tech industry by working in an operational role for four years. I worked in client support and then was a knowledge-base manager, and then created the foundations of our global learning and development program. This gave me a full understanding of the company and product and, after working with every department, was able to understand how to best communicate and engage each team in projects and company activities. With five years of experience at Reward Gateway, I then began my career in internal communications and employee engagement.

What has most surprised you about your career?

I'm still learning every day, and I have so much to teach others. Having a degree in art I've found a career that allows me to use my artistic and creative thinking side in a way I never imagined. I never expected a career that would align so well with my natural skills and, as such, would mean that I show a lot of passion in what I do. Alongside my full-time employment, I've also been able to start my own consultancy, which gives me further experience, variety ,and exposure in my role and helps more leaders transform their companies for the better.

Sweta Parekh

Associate Program Manager at eClerx

What do you do?

I am currently working as an onsite consultant/SME for paid media operations, globally helping marketers, analytics, and media agencies provide consultation, documentation, optimization, and training across media platforms and processes laid by PayPal to enable successful campaigns activation. I support enabling and drive change management of new functionalities, platforms, automation, and processes. I also help to develop paid media operations as service and product for eClerx.

How did you get where you are?

I started working as an analyst in 2005 for Dell, where I learned how to manage website and product content and site search. In around six months, I was promoted to senior analyst and also worked in the Dell EnA process. Then in 2008, I was promoted to APM and was managing the Dell site search and SEO process. I also started to learn how site search and SEO works to develop myself into an SME.

From 2010–11, I managed the site search team and SEO as a process manager for Dell and also worked on developing site search and SEO as a new service area for eClerx. In 2011, I started working to acquire more clients for site search solutions with onsite. For the next six years, I helped to develop site search, SEO, and CRO services / product and successful client acquisitions and process transition across the U.S. and Europe and was promoted to success programs manager (SPM) and associate program manager. Since then, I’ve been working on the paid media operations and tagging SME for PayPal. 

In short, my career has developed through constant new learning opportunities from eClerx, which have helped me grow and develop new skills. Trust and confidence of senior management, who gave guidance, support, and opportunities, was also important in my career development. 

What has most surprised you about your career?

I was given the opportunity to work onsite in Singapore for process management, which I had no experience and knowledge in. But senior management and our client were confident that I would be able to manage client expectations.

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