Powerful Women in Consumer Technology 2019: Lauren Simmen
To see the full 2019 class of Powerful Women in Consumer Technology, please check out the program's home page.
Title: Director, Marketing
Company: SurgeX, AMETEK Electronic Systems Protection
Tell us a little about your career history:
I started my career in PR at Caster Communications as an account coordinator in 2006. After six years and working my way up to a senior account executive position, I was offered a job by my favorite client, SurgeX. Since 2012, I have taken on various roles in sales and marketing including Communications and Partner Support Director, where I offered sales and customer support, took care of internal and external communications, and organized tradeshows and other marketing tasks. I also had a regional sales manager role where I was responsible for growing sales in the Eastern U.S. territory. Most recently, I was promoted from marketing manager to director of marketing where I’m responsible for all marketing activities, new product development, and strategic direction for AMETEK’s SurgeX, ESP, and Powervar brands.
What attracted you to a career in consumer technology?
Like many people, I kind of fell into consumer technology; however, once I was here, it was clear I wasn’t going anywhere. Let’s face it: We get to work with toys all day long! The people in this industry are some of the most passionate people I have ever met and the energy that everyone has is contagious. You can’t help getting excited about the products, technology and the future of the industry.
What are the best initiatives available to attract women to careers in technology—and what hurdles are left to overcome?
I think the hurdles start at the high-school level, and maybe even as early as middle school. There is a perception that technology is a “boys world,” and programs like robotics, math, and trade schools are predominantly male. Our industry, combined with the education system, needs to find ways to attract young women to technology in their tween and teenage years, otherwise it will be left to chance for many women to land careers in the technology industry.
Our industry’s Number One problem is talent. We simply do not have enough talent to choose from – including both men and women – which makes it super-competitive, especially because the industry continues to thrive. I think the main reason for this is that our industry doesn’t do a great job of publicizing itself. We need to make the next generation aware of all of the opportunities our industry has to offer and the incredibly cool projects we’re involved in on a daily basis. We all need to do our part to generate more awareness across the education system.
What accomplishments are you most proud of in your career?
I am a NSCA Education Foundation board member, and it is definitely the work I’m most proud of in my career. I and my fellow board members have been working on the Ignite program, which was designed to address the issues and gaps in labor in our industry. Developing internships and programs to entice the next generation to join our industry has been incredibly rewarding.
Any closing thoughts you’d like to share?
Congratulations to all of the Powerful Women in CT winners! Together, we are advancing technology, which improves our customers’ lives. That, in itself, is amazing.