Susan Jaworski

by Susan Jaworski Director, New Technology Introduction IBM Systems & Technology Group

Susan Jaworski

Susan Jaworski

Dear Susie,
You are very lucky in life and you will use it well. You already know you have a wonderful supportive family with seven brothers and four sisters. You will learn that you have been blessed with many great skills like math, logic, spatial ability, and maybe the most valuable… you don’t just adapt well to change, you thrive on making it happen.
You will learn, and I know it doesn’t feel like it now, someone was giving you a gift when they placed you younger than six brothers. It will teach you many things, like not to be afraid of confrontation, and that you have to work hard for you position in life. Given the year, you will live in a man’s world, but you will barely notice. And then of course, a gift that only brothers can give, you will also expect respect from everyone (except them), because as a young girl, no one will ever get near you unless they give you that respect. Oh, another thing… it takes a bit, but after about 20 years they stop calling you bossy and just call you boss.
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Renee Ducre

by Renee E. Ducre, Director of Marketing, Cloud and Smarter Infrastructure, IBM Software Group

Renee Ducre

Renee Ducre

Ah…To the Young Miss Ducre :)
In the words of Marianne Williamson, I say to you… “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of a higher power. Your playing small does not serve the world… We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of a higher power that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same…”
Some other words of advice to help you along your way… Stay true to who you are… remember the lessons taught by your parents and those who paved the way before you…
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Christine Arnold

by Christine Arnold
Director, Cloud Managed Services
IBM Global Technology Services; Europe

Christine Arnold

Christine Arnold

Dear Christine,

You are only 8 years old and it is so cute to see you reading books like someone might eat sweets, I trust you might want to write a book yourself one day and wish your work balance will allow for it. It will always be up to you to manage what is important for you.

Christine Arnold , age 8

8 year old Christine

Number 3 ex-aequo of a 6 kid family, you are so lucky to have a (non identical) twin, she is a beloved present for life. Your mother also has one and their relationship is simply a model. Plus having one brother and four sisters is something very few people can tell about teams.
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Teri Soken

by Teri Soken
IBM Development Director

Teri Soken

Teri Soken

Dear Teri –
As I look back on our career over the last 35+ years I’d offer you (and me…grin) the following observations: a) Hard work does pay off b) Variety will offer you a much broader basis for your future career c) It will be hard to balance work and home life, but worth it d) Focus on customers and customer satisfaction will always be key. Let me tell you more of why I say this.
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Padma Chukka

by Padma Chukka
IBM Certified Executive Project Manager

Padma Chukka

Padma Chukka

Dear Padma,
Do you remember the day that you landed at JFK Airport in NY with a suit case, a carry on bag and $200 in your pocket book?? That picture is still in my mind and I will never forget it. You tried to find a police officer and wanted to stay close to him for safety. What innocence. I am laughing at you now, but I know exactly what you went through waiting for a friend whom you had not seen in 10 years. I wish I could go back in time and reassure you that everything would be just fine.

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Andre’a Jackson

by Andre’a D. Jackson
IBM Client Value Manager, North America

Andrea Jackson

Andre’a Jackson

Dear Andre’a,
You played a great game today even though the boys did not want you to play on the team. Thankfully, you had the support of your brother, Marvin… who actually had no choice in the matter as Mom had told him to look after you and make sure that you play with the team. You held your own and ignored that awful pain when you slid into third base… that is when the guys began to take you seriously and really began to look at you as a real softball player! Not to mention the cheers going up when you scored. Marvin was glad that you had not embarrassed him. Even though the team lost the game… you knew that you had been a real team player and gone the extra mile… on that slide… to support the goal of the team (win the game). Afterwards, as the team walked back towards home, the discussion centered around the fun and excitement of the collective plays in the game… the loss forgotten. They joked and chided you on the way you had slid into third base… totally amazed that a girl could slide like that… ”Didn’t it hurt?”… one of them asked…”No, not really”… you replied. “We need you to slide like that in the next game”. The next game… you reflected… not sure I want to keep hurting myself.
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Ronnie Maffa

by Ronnie Maffa
IBM Vice President, Web and Social Software Development

Ronnie Maffa

Ronnie Maffa

Dear Ronnie,
The opportunity to really establish yourself is in front of you. Leading project Hydra will test your ability to not be afraid to take chances. I know you only have been in the work force for a few years, and you are worried that you neither have the experience nor the stature for your manager to trust you with this complex project. And you are worried that more experienced leaders on the team have tried and have failed. You are concerned about the impression that you may make on your colleagues and manager when you ask for this opportunity. The seemingly endless debate you have with yourself about whether you should apply for the position: what will happen if you are turned down?, what will happen if you get the job and can you succeed if you do?, is the risk worth it?, and are you really prepare to do whatever it will take?, will eventually convince you to take the safe route, keep doing what you are doing and wait for the next small growth opportunity.
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Susan Puglia

by Susan M. Puglia
IBM Vice President

Susan Puglia

Susan Puglia

Dear Susan,
When Dad tells you that you can be anything you want to be in life, believe him. But know that you’ll need to work hard, be alert to recognize and take opportunities that come your way, stretch yourself to operate outside your comfort zone, persevere to make a difference, and most importantly just be yourself… always be yourself. Although you’re a very reserved, even shy child, there will be many people in your life who will help you to build your
confidence and find your voice. And as you do that, amazing things will happen.
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