Pioneering the Perfect Balance of a Gender-Equal Workplace – the Founder of Ascentic, Anna Kalm

Offering an influential impact on uplifting the corporation she created on an excellent level, Anna Kalm, Founder of Ascentic, has steered her group to stand as a trailblazing organization to represent efficacious equality. Anna is an effective leader in the ICT industry, representing high professionalism and directing her team on a progressive pathway. Taking a step to break the bounds of superficial norms relating to gender, she has created a collaborative workplace where diversity can stand together in unity. As the world moves forward into a new era where technology remains at the center of many functions, Anna has created a corporation that caters to these needs.

Anna, who is from Sweden, was inspired to form a tech team that engaged potential talent in Sri Lanka because her instinctive entrepreneurial vision saw a huge opportunity to grow within this market. Starting its journey with just a handful of employees, Ascentic now stands as an organization employing 100 plus employees. Occupying a team of cloud developers and data scientists in Sri Lanka, the company was founded by Anna with a mission to gather the best developers in Sri Lanka and create an outstanding place to work. It has effectively catered to many clients who have pledged their trust in the corporation. Driven by a passion for technology and a commitment to always delivering services of the highest quality, Anna has successfully created an organization that helps clients with their web, applications, and analytics projects. Ascentic formulates cloud solutions as their speciality, where they do everything from backend infrastructure to application design and analytics tasks.

The most significant move Ascentic has made to achieve equity in its workplace is its parental leave policy, which combines an innovative approach with a progressive outlook. A policy that makes both the mother and the father eligible for paid leave because it believes it is crucial for both parents to be involved in the early stages of a child’s life Anna, as a visionary woman, stands by this policy, which she applied to assist both men and women in her organization, while the community surrounding her reacted extremely positively to the effort. Anna has pioneered a revolutionary impact that effectively secures gender equality within her firm by integrating the progressive influence of her motherland, Sweden, where the policy was formed, into Sri Lanka, the country she cherishes.

She views her leadership as one of the greatest roles she has to fulfill as a woman. Anna does not interest herself in speculating on potential differences or similarities between female and male leaders. In her opinion, leadership transcends gender. Productive qualities do not have an association with gender; rather, Anna views it as an individual preference and choice.

“I prefer not to speculate on whether what I’ve learnt as a leader is necessarily related to my gender, as it forces me to assume things about male and female leadership that might contribute to further stereotyping. What I have clearly seen throughout my career is the power of empathic and trust-based leadership. I have seen my own company thrive from it, and throughout the challenges caused by the pandemic, research after research has confirmed the same: empathic leadership fosters innovation, engagement, retention, inclusivity, work-life balance, and much more, all leading not only to happier team members but also better business outcomes.”

With an overview of her leadership style, Anna also states the importance of balancing the numbers of female and male contributors within various industries. As a firm believer in the positive effects of a diverse team, she strives towards a healthy gender balance in her organization. With that purpose in mind, Anna provides her advice to other women who are building their careers in the ICT industry.

“With the current statistics of male vs female representation in leadership positions, especially in the ICT sector where I’m operating, I am definitely not content. More female leaders are needed to act as role models for young professionals and set a new standard for what a gender-balanced workforce looks like. The advice I would like to give to women, regardless of their aspirations or long-term goals, is to build a career on your strengths. Take in feedback, get a mentor, and self-reflect on who you are and what you are good at. Your strengths are what you will be building a successful career on, not your weaknesses or a specific technology that you master. Gain the needed insights about yourself as a professional and leader, and use them fiercely in salary negotiations, job interviews, and to gain the opportunities where you can truly thrive. “ 

Anna continues to inspire those around her to fight for the rights they deserve, empowering many aspiring females who want to take risks and enter the corporate world. As she believes in a world where gender will not be a factor in determining the opportunities or limitations of an individual, she strives to help others see beyond conventions and stereotypes. By building on her strengths and actively bringing in the perspective of others into the thought process, she is positive that her organization will continue to have a positive influence on the booming tech scenes of Sri Lanka and Sweden.

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