The gauntlet was thrown down during a conversation by a male executive friend in the music industry who read my earlier female candidates for the Head of Google Music gig. (Yes for some reason you all like to send me emails privately instead of actually posting in the comments. Who has other suggestions for candidates? Come on and make your voice public!)
Challenge: You stopped at six because there aren’t 10 qualified women to be considered for Head of Google Music.
Opps, I stopped at six merely because that was the number Billboard had on their list which if you want to go all male why didn’t they easily make it 10 by adding “King of the Ringtone” Jeff Dodes (he has a law degree)? How about Ted Mico (Head of Interscope Geffen A&M Digital)? Why not even go for Launch-founders-turned-Yahoo-Music-gone-Silicon-Valley Dave Goldberg & Bob Roback? Shall I go on? No, but like Celine my heart will and my heart is passionate about giving a spotlight on women in tech.
How about we go for not only female but add in my other passion for spotlighting great Asian women? Here’s two more candidates or 7 & 8 to add to my earlier list:
1. Roma Khanna – She is not only a lawyer, she also has an MBA. She happens to also be the President of NBC Uni International’s Global Networks & Digital Initiatives. Oh, how I love GLOBAL experience and so does Google. Let’s continue because Ms. Khanna also has music experience having worked at not only CHUM Radio & Television, MuchMusic in Canada, but in legal affairs at Sony Music!
2. Rachna Bhasin- This Kiwi is also a) international b) an MBA holder. That MBA just so happens to be from Harvard Business School. As the current General Manager of Strategic Partnerships & Personalization, Dell Global Consumer Groups, Ms. Bhasin has put together deals that include the fabulous colors & fresh new logos on Dell Computers. Got music? Rachna worked in sales at EMI and biz dev. Need more tech than that? She was a product manager at CitySearch. Rachna has so many tricks it makes my head spin.
Detractors: What’s so upsetting? That these women are amazing or you are still asleep while they have been in 4 cities in one week making digital history round the globe?
9. Shannon Ferguson- Currently the COO of Silentale, a digital aggregator of all your conversations across social networks. She started out in Investment Banking at Credit Suisse before diving into entertainment at British Sky Broadcasting. She even reported directly to Elisabeth Murdoch. Next up Ms. Ferguson took her business & strategic acumen to Yahoo! Europe in Entertainment and Media before being named the GM of Yahoo! Music. Shannon is a great motivator in addition to being a fine human.
10. Susan Lyne- CEO of The Gilt Groupe. I saw her speak at a Mediabistro conference earlier this year and it was captivating. Here is this uber creative woman who transitioned from the magazine world to television as President of ABC Entertainment to running Martha Stewart Omnimedia reinventing herself in a more positive way than Madonna, to heading up and revamping Gilt Groupe. Perhaps you may shake your head and say that Susan is overqualified, but is that a bad thing? She discussed sitting down with engineers and going over the process so she could understand, dissect it and rebuild it to be better. Last year Jetsetter, the travel arm of Gilt launched and will also be competing with sites like Groupon and LivingSocial.com for city specific deals. She brings a lot of diverse, creative and business savvy to the table.
Don’t believe that Google isn’t afraid of women on top? Check out these fabulous Google female execs and decide for yourself.
My challenge to you as hiring managers out there in any company is to think outside of the box to get different results.