Didem Un Ates - Microsoft
Didem is accustomed to public speaking. She’s talked to audiences around the world about; her work with artificial intelligence (AI) while at Microsoft; how to responsibly, inclusively and ethically scale this tech, and; how to encourage more young women into the technology sector.
While prepping for one such extremely important presentation, Didem had a half-day, one-to-one, voice coaching session with Susan. Reflecting on that experience Didem says: “I’ve had public speaking coaches before but Susan’s amazing. I thought she’d give me some voice exercises and training, but she went way beyond that, providing wonderful feedback and advice to improve the flow of the presentation I was preparing to give. What impresses me about Susan is how authentic she is – she really cares. She takes on the topic and has a way of bringing out the best in people.
That presentation I gave was a huge, huge success. There were about 200 in the audience and what I said and how I delivered it moved some of them to tears. The feedback I received was it was one of the most inspirational presentations some had ever seen.
The value of that single session with Susan continues to live on. I’ve used that presentation to anchor many more I’ve subsequently given. The guidance and feedback Susan shared is as useful to me today, as the day she shared it.
I just feel honoured to have met Susan and I’m delighted that our joint passion for gender equality and inspiring women into technology and AI, means we continue to remain in touch.”
Didem Un Ates was reflecting on her time with Susan while working as Senior Director, AI Customer & Partner Engagement at Microsoft. She is now Managing Director, Data & AI, Europe at Accenture.