Meet Cynthia Beldner, Gloat’s Senior Director of Global Operational Growth #WomenatWork

We sat down for a quick chat with Gloat's senior Director of Global Operational Growth, Cynthia Beldner.

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By Adam Etzion, HR Analyst @ Gloat

May 5, 2021

Gloat is driven by a diverse array of women at every level of the organization; it’s our privilege to bring their voices and experiences to the forefront and learn from their perspectives.

Today, we spoke with Cynthia Beldner, who has taken on the company’s Global Operational Growth.

Hi Cynthia! Could you tell us what you do here at Gloat?

I am the Senior Director of Global Operational Growth, which, if you search LinkedIn, is a non-existent job. Welcome to life at a startup! I operate somewhere in between a Chief of Staff, BizOps/RevOps whisperer, and org-wide transformation consultant – whatever is preventing Gloat as a company from reaching its strategic goals, I work with our exec and leadership team to prioritize the right work and eliminate the problem.

We can all do a better job of giving those who don’t fit a stereotypical mold -- whether it’s women, BIPOC, those with different abilities or different life circumstances -- the benefit of the doubt.

Name a woman who inspires you and why!

Emily Oster. She is an economist who, in her spare time, reviewed clinical research on all things pregnancy and wrote a book with actual, useful information. She shined a light on the abysmal state of medical research focused on women’s healthcare, specifically the lack of research on a major medical event, pregnancy and childbirth, that 85% of women (in the US as of 2015) go through at least once. 

Are there any assumptions about women that you would like to change? Why?

Making assumptions about anyone or anything is generally poor form. Instead, be curious. And read “Thinking, Fast and Slow” because our “instincts” are pretty flawed.

What do you believe will be the biggest challenge for the generation of women behind you?

As we look to the future, the challenge for all of us is how can we extend ideas of equality to all parts of the world (without colonialist overtones), and ensure that old ideas don’t make a comeback.

For allies, how can they better support women through these changing times? What is the impact that allyship can have on women’s advancement?

We can all do a better job of giving those who don’t fit a stereotypical mold — whether it’s women, BIPOC, those with different abilities or different life circumstances — the benefit of the doubt. When you consider a colleague for an opportunity, there are always unknowns. Can they get the job done? Will they be a good fit on the team? 

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If you are unsure about their potential simply because you haven’t seen someone who looks or sounds exactly like that do the job before, then that’s the moment to catch yourself. Extend them the benefit of the doubt.

Give us your favorite quote!

“If you want to build a ship, don’t tell the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” The saying is derived from a passage in “Citadelle” written by Antoine De Saint-Exupery. My other favorite quotes have curse words.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself at the start of your career?

Introduce yourself to the leadership team. Don’t be intimidated by their seniority nor by their titles. Don’t wait for them to come to you. Find a reason to say hello. I once worked with an Account Exec at Microsoft. She told me a story about how she finally met the CEO at one of her large enterprise accounts. She found out where he parked his car. She then started to park her car in the same area, and kept a large box in her trunk. One day, she saw the CEO coming and she timed it just right – carrying that box to the door, he held the door open for her. It was then that she finally got the introduction. I can’t tell you how much I love that story. So let me tell you: I love that story.

Diversity in the workplace isn’t just a mission of our product, it’s a mission within our company. We recently released our Why We Work study and found that almost twice as many women (43%) as men (24%) feel their company doesn’t utilize their full potential. 

The study involved 1,000 U.S. employees and provided us with deep insights into motivations in the workplace. We learned a great deal about growth and change, the visibility of our skill sets, access, and also the gender diversity gap. At the bottom line, women need more room for advancement in the workplace.

We’re excited to continue to learn from the women at Gloat and share these lessons with our community. 

Stay tuned for our next interview from our Women at Work series on the Gloat Blog!

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