Women in Finance Awards Q&A: Doris Brophy, SocGen
Doris Brophy, Managing Director, Data Governance & Standards at Société Générale, won the Individual Achievement award at Markets Media’s 2019 Women in Finance Awards.
What is the ‘secret of your success’?
A lot of hard work and some luck. I recognized from an early age what I’m good at and worked hard to take that forward. In college, I took programming classes to get out of a language requirement and that led to adding a computer science degree to degrees in econ and mathematics. This set me up nicely to succeed in the financial industry which has become so dependent on technology. There’s also luck – raising my hand for opportunities when they came up. I think it’s important to be open, try new things, find what you’re good at and build on that.
How do you connect individual success and organizational success?
In my career, I’ve found success in organizations that prioritize initiatives aligned with my skillset. This prioritization must be top-down – business strategy with available funding. My career is in data and technology, so working for financial institutions that prioritize innovation in data and technology provided me with opportunities to be successful. Individual success also requires reinventing yourself as the industry changes and grows, especially in tech. Within financial services, technology is an enabler dependent on good data; there are huge opportunities in this space.
Which mentor(s) have helped you most in your career, and how?
So many! I’ve had many mentors, almost all male, who guided me as a student and in my career. Men who took the time to share their subject matter expertise – to train me and others on ways to solve complex calculations and how to use new and emerging technologies.
My mentors also provided me with a lot of career guidance. My parents didn’t work in the business world, and there was a lot I had to learn about the subtle points of a career and working with others. It was so beneficial to have mentors who guided me in that as well.
How important is it to recognize women in the financial industry?
I know it’s important, but the Women in Finance dinner really opened my eyes to how incredibly important it is. Women need women as role models, to see what is possible, to see how far women have come. It opens doors for anyone with even a small interest, especially early in their careers.
What did you learn at Markets Media’s Nov. 20 awards event?
I learned about so many incredible women – what they do and what they have achieved, as well as about their families and their charitable work. I got to see the whole picture. I’ve spent my career in financial services, and it was not like this when I started. It’s amazing to see how much impact this group of women has had within our industry. I am humbled and honored to be recognized with such an impressive group.
Winners will be announced on Thursday, Sept. 23.
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