Stephanie Rideau

Director, Business Operations and Development

Comcast Keystone Region

What one thing has transformed your career? 

Getting exposure to diverse areas of the business after graduate school transformed my career. Prior to graduate school, I had been in the pharma industry. My experience was primarily in sales and marketing. It was my comfort zone. I have a degree in Chemical and Biomedical Engineering; so, all things pharma were right up my alley. However, after graduating from business school, I got out of my comfort zone. I went to work for a biotech company. The first role I had was in Global Service Operations. I had never done ops work before. I had not worked globally before. But I learned it and I crushed it! I got out of my comfort zone. I worked in three different areas of the business and in three different functions after that. I learned new ways of doing business as well as worked with various leaders. Exposing myself to different roles and different leadership styles in different parts of the business transformed my career.

How has the idea of facing fear impacted your career?

Fear is a real thing; especially for women. The idea of facing fear had me paralyzed initially. Acquiescing to fear stunted my advancement. It limited my ability to take risks. I wasn’t necessarily afraid of failing, but I was so worried about what others would think of me. I was afraid to make a mistake and have that be my story. Fear was stunting my growth! I came to realize two truths:

  1. Fear is definitely false evidence appearing real. I built up courage by pushing through fear. I still felt fear but didn’t let it stop me. Courage is not the absence of fear, it is doing things in spite of it. The more I did something, the more I fueled my courage.
  2. Mistakes happen. People fail. I learned to view my mistakes and use the knowledge to propel myself forward. I adopted the adage “What did I learn and how can I leverage this new information?”

Courage and leaning into my fear propelled my career. Leaders don’t let fear stop them, they lean into it. They know it’s not fatal to their leadership unless they allow it to be. Leaning into fear is a stop on the journey to success.

As women leaders, has participation in WICT and its programming enhanced your leadership capabilities?  How?

WICT programming has definitely enhanced my leadership capabilities as I prepare for more senior roles. Learning from other women leaders helped me learn skills and develop strategies that are critical for delivering results. In addition, WICT has helped me learn how to navigate and face challenges that are unique to women in the industry. Connecting with other women helps to build camaraderie and strength like no other.

Here are just a few of the benefits you receive as a WICT member:

  • Connections. You will meet the most amazing women (and men) who will serve as role models, mentors and friends.
  • Training. Whether you attend our webinars, local chapter programs or national seminars such as the WICT Leadership Conference or the Senior Executive Summit, you’ll bring back tools and skills that you can impact your success.
  • Guidance. The WICT Touchstones of Leadership form the foundation for all of WICT’s initiatives. They serve as our compass and can serve as yours. You will gain clarity on the value you bring to your organization and your vision for your career. 

Join by Friday, June 28! WICT Greater Pittsburgh will enter you into a raffle for a personal brand experience (including executive coaching and a professional headshot) or a complimentary registration to the WICT Leadership Conference

Want to learn more? Visit www.wictnow.org.

And, remember to grab a hand… we’re all here for each other! You just need to jump at the opportunity to be an active part of this amazing industry!