Women in Big Data Global



A Conversation with Neil Metzler: Proud Supporter of Women in Big Data

Women in Big Data

By Colleen Arend,

November 13, 2023


It’s been two years since we last caught up with Neil Metzler, Cloud Business Advisor, Coach, Tech Ally and a steadfast supporter of Women in Big Data. In our latest chat with him, he shares new insights into his evolving career and his unwavering commitment to our community.

Neil’s career journey is driven by financial independence, a sense of purpose at work, and continuous skill development. Over the years, he has used his sales career to foster global mobility and connect his family across the United States and Europe. Neil’s career focus revolves around global sales and business development. Notably, he made a strategic pivot from e-commerce to the cloud a few years ago. During the pandemic, he took a bold step, stepping away from the corporate path to establish his own solo business. These two years of independence reshaped his perspective on leadership and the meaning of work. As he kept a watchful eye on the job market, he embraced a full-time senior sales role at a pre-exit growth company. This role stretched his core skillset in tech sales while providing learning opportunities and pathways for his next career evolution.

Neil reflects on his involvement with Women in Big Data (WiBD), highlighting the importance of volunteerism in his life. “WiBD is a volunteer-run organization, and I’m proud to be a part of it. I’ve been working with WiBD to strengthen their corporate giving workstream and have had the privilege of attending board leadership offsites and facilitating sessions. It’s been an eye-opening experience for me. I encourage anyone considering a change in their life to dedicate half a day a week to an organization they care about. The network, skills, and leadership opportunities I’ve gained from WiBD far outweigh what I’ve given.”

When asked if his life has changed since our last interview, Neil responds, “Absolutely. Volunteering with WiBD gives me purpose, fulfillment, and growth, regardless of my career path. Leaving Big Tech after a decade was a sudden shock. One day your work calendar is filled with company meetings and appointments with colleagues, and the next day it is empty for you to determine how your own business day looks. When I left and turned in my laptop, there was silence. It took me 4-6 weeks to create new structures and habits. I’m proud to say that volunteering at WiBD on Fridays became a positive highlight of my week.”

He encourages others to take the first step in being an ally, saying, “We are facing intense challenges right now. Don’t stand on the sidelines, read articles, or see something and not act. Build the future you want to see—whether it’s tackling the gender gap in tech, representation, pay equality, or inclusive leadership. Take the first step today.”

Neil expresses his gratitude to WiBD global leaders Radhika Rangarajan, Shala Arshi, and Tina Tang for guiding him as an inexperienced ally. He emphasizes the importance of exploring, learning from inevitable mistakes, and experimenting while moving forward.

If you are considering becoming an ally or want to get involved with our Munich chapter, we encourage you to start today by following our LinkedIn page, liking, commenting, and sharing our posts within your network. We look forward to seeing you at our upcoming events and meeting with you in person to explore additional ways to demonstrate your allyship.


Colleen Arend, the author of the article is also Volunteering Content Manager for Women in Big Data Munich (Germany)

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