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Women’s History Month: Celebrating Women @ Skillz

Women’s History Month: Celebrating Women @ Skillz

on March 20, 2020

We spoke with some of the incredible women at Skillz who are building on our vision of esports for everyone – proven entrepreneurs, executives, and leaders who envision a world where everyone plays games. As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we learn from a few of our fearless leaders: 

 

Hailey Parish-Lapriore, HR Business Partner

What is the best piece of advice you have received? 

Everyone has a story, but you are the only author of your life.  

What advice would you give to women interested in joining tech and gaming?

I made the mistake of thinking that tech – and gaming specifically – was a space where I wouldn’t belong. I was wrong! Being an athlete my whole life, I’ve always valued fair play and healthy competition. I love that working in esports has shown me a new way to get in touch with my inner athlete. The psychology behind losing – i.e. that idea in your head that says ‘I’m not good enough at this, I should just quit’ – is totally disrupted when you’re put in a Skillz race against an opponent at your level. You remember to embrace your inner champion and GO FOR IT. So, my advice is exactly that: go for it!

Who is your role model? 

Gwen Stefani has been my ‘she-ro’ since I was 9 years old!  

What is your proudest professional accomplishment?

Public speaking is one of my greatest fears. At the end of those experiences, I’m always proud of myself for giving it my best effort. I feel most accomplished when I know that I’m afraid to fail but show up anyway.

What is your favorite part about working at Skillz?

The people! I know that I can lean on anyone at Skillz for help – with any problem or question – all because we have a shared understanding that we are more successful collectively than we could ever be individually.

 

Cate Margeson, Fraud Manager

What advice would you give to women interested in joining tech and gaming? 

Bring your authentic self to work – sometimes it can be easier to fit yourself into whatever the existing culture is, but bringing your perspective and your experiences will not only make your life more enjoyable, but also improve the health of the business. 

What is your proudest professional accomplishment?

My time at Skillz has been incredibly rewarding. Helping to build out the Trust & Safety team from just me to now 16 people has been my proudest accomplishment. It’s been so cool helping folks grow in their careers! 

What is your favorite part about working at Skillz?

The intelligent & passionate people. I recently moved to Vegas to help open our office here and I’m so excited to find more people who can help us build the future of the company! 

 

Arlene Enero, Engineering Manager in Player Experience

What is the best piece of advice you have received? 

It’s important to have mentors inside and outside your company. 

What advice would you give to women interested in joining tech and gaming? 

Talent is not defined by gender or sexual orientation. It’s not defined by ethnicity, age, or cultural background. We all have power over our careers. We have the power to choose the right role and company for us. We should be empowered to aim high. Know your short and long term goals, and build your career roadmap! Knowing early in your career where you want to go (e.g. leadership track vs technical/architect track) gives you more time to actually build and improve the skills necessary to get there.  

What is your favorite part about working at Skillz?

The people are smart, driven, and passionate about what we’re building. They are also always willing to step up, wear many hats, and help each other – and I truly appreciate that. 

 

Jessica Hardie, Senior Manager in Customer Support

What is the best piece of advice you have received? 

It’s not who you are that holds you back, it’s who you think you are not.

What advice would you give to women interested in joining tech and gaming? 

Your experience is applicable and valuable! A linkedin study showed women are 14% less likely to apply for a job without meeting 100% of the experience requirements. Apply anyway! Take a chance on yourself. Also check out your local Women in Tech chapter and come to a happy hour. Get a sense of the opportunities in your area by talking to the women already making waves in it.

Who is your role model? 

My grandmothers. I’ve been very lucky to have had their bluntly honest guidance. 

What is your proudest professional accomplishment?

I had the opportunity to move from California to Oregon to open a new office, and building its culture from the ground up was an amazing experience. 

What is your favorite part about working at Skillz?

Hands down, the people and the culture. It’s a welcoming, inclusive environment full of driven individuals that never hesitate to help you grow. I’ve learned so much from people genuinely excited about what they work on, and happy to help you achieve your own goals. We’re fast-paced and push each other to realize our potential, but refreshingly not competitive with each other. Instead we work as a team towards a collective goal (unless we’re talking about staff gaming tournaments, that’s a whole different story!). I’ve been in the gaming industry about 12 years now, and Skillz really breaks the mold with the culture we’ve been able to foster.

 

Skillz is hiring at www.skillz.com/careers