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Cleantech

Our women in tech

September 20, 2018 | Jennifer Liu

We all know it’s true: tech is an industry traditionally dominated by males. You’ve likely heard statistics about how only 20% of tech jobs are held by women, which has led to a call for wider acceptance of all genders in tech. From this, a number of initiatives have popped up around the world, including Women in Tech Week (happening September 17–21).

At EVBox, we sit at the intersection of cleantech and automotive, where the former is known for a surprisingly high percentage of women (up to 33% in some areas) and the latter has not progressed much (average of 20.3% worldwide). We focus on filling our company up with the best talent out there, but we decided to do some math and—to our (pleasant) surprise—we’re proud to say that almost 1 in 3 EVBoxers are female! 

For Women in Tech Week, we’re highlighting a few of our female EVBoxers who are paving their own careers in cleantech. Meet Michelle Robinson (our Head of Operations for North America), Anca Luca (our UX Designer), and Juliette Crespel (our PR and Events Intern)!


What’s the biggest challenge you’re tackling in your role?

Michelle: As Head of Operations for a major growth market, I’m focused on the challenge of implementing fluid processes that align globally, which requires me to understand the nuances of our current landscape, technology, competitor offerings, and limitations. It’s extremely motivating to play an integral role in establishing the EVBox footprint in North America while working with some of the most influential leaders within the industry. As a woman, wife, mother, and professional, I’m driven by being a steward of purpose and bringing awareness to how EVs can create a better environment for generations to come.

Anca: My focus as a UX Designer within EVBox is to work on the software solution that helps our customers manage their charging infrastructure. One of the main challenges that I have in my role is that the EV charging industry is still young and things are being shaped as we talk. This is a great opportunity, but at the same time, it comes with a lot of responsibility—we are the ones shaping today the way the charging solutions will be tomorrow. My way of dealing with this is by doing thorough research: I strongly believe that understanding your customers and how you can enable them in doing their best is the key to a strong product and to a better, cleaner future.

Juliette: In PR & Events, my focus is not just to highlight EVBox externally, but also to put the EV industry on the media’s radar. None of my weeks are the same—I can have one spent on writing content and planning ahead, then one where I run all over the place to finalize the details of an event. But I have to admit that I like this rush of adrenaline and pressure—after all, that’s what working in events is about, especially in such a fast-paced industry.


What does future mobility look like?

Michelle: In the next 5–10 years, I expect an increase in car-sharing and autonomous cars. I believe that we will see more innovative uses and services relating to batteries and better integration with smart buildings or cities. While there may be less dependence on petrol vehicles, I don't think the infrastructure will fully be in place yet to completely taper off from gas. Local government incentives and cost parity will remain essential in driving the demand and awareness for EVs.

Anca: The way we experience mobility won’t change drastically in the next 5–10 years, but I do think we will make the right steps towards an integrated, customer-centric mobility ecosystem. The first autonomous cars will be on the road, transforming transportation into more of a social experience. Car-sharing will become increasingly popular, and of course, let’s not forget about electric vehicles: the forecast for EVs on the roads are very optimistic, and it’s expected that electric vehicles will grow from 3 million to 125 million by 2030.

Juliette: White-collar workers won’t commute anymore and will have the option to live and work in the same space, such as flats with big co-working spaces on the top floor, and the option to have meetings via augmented reality. That way, one could meet their neighbors, share one’s skills, and work on projects together without needing to utilize roads unless they truly needed to. I believe that would help recreate connections within cities and neighborhoods.


Who has inspired you in your career?

Michelle: My former senior leader at American Express, Betty Daruwala, mentored me early on in my career and stressed the importance of learning from the ground up. She never allowed me to be complacent or entitled, and always pushed me to overachieve. I learned early on that setting and measuring goals, having an alignment of purpose, and being welcoming of diverse opinions, competition, and risk-taking all serve to create an atmosphere where consensus is not something to be sought but, rather, is something that is central to the ethos of an organization.

Anca: I don’t have a role model per se, but I do have a few people that I follow constantly as they serve as an inspiration and motivation for me. One of them is Christoph Niemann, a graphic designer who designed most of The New Yorker’s covers—I love his Abstract Sunday series! Another one I follow avidly would be Elizabeth Churchill, the Director of User Experience at Google. And finally, there’s Don Norman, who made a very big impact in the usability domain. His work, together with his partner Jacob Nielsen, is of great importance to the entire design community.

Juliette: Isabelle Kocher. She brought change, vision, and purpose into the aging energy industry. Thanks to her confidence and the strong decisions she’s taken, ENGIE is now paving the way for renewable energy. She’s also notably the first and only female CEO of a CAC 40 company! In a nutshell, a great leader on a mission for a zero-emission future.

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Whether you’re a woman who holds a STEM job or pursues a career in the tech industry—keep doing what you love, because together, we are rewriting the norms of working in tech. Want to meet more of the faces behind EVBox? We’ve got a playlist full of Hey EVBoxer videos waiting for you!

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