Kendy Rannenberg: having a seat at the table is not enough, you must have a voice and speak up
Kendy Rannenberg‘s career is a testament to the idea that a technical education is not a prerequisite for success in the digital industry. In her current role as the Manager of Sales Development for Central Europe at Databricks, Kendy is instrumental in propelling business expansion. At the same time, she made substantial contributions as the Munich Chapter Co-Lead at Women in Big Data, significantly impacting the organization’s achievements.
Please tell us about your current work.
I have been working at Databricks since 2021, where I lead the Sales Development Team in Central Europe. At Databricks, we provide a cloud-based data platform that empowers data teams to generate analytics and insights while facilitating the development of machine learning tools. Our innovative approach combines data lakes and data warehouses into the Lakehouse architecture. In addition to my role at Databricks, I have been serving as the Women in Big Data Munich Chapter Co-Lead in Munich since 2018. Women in Big Data is a non-profit organization with a mission to inspire and connect women pursuing careers in the field of big data.
How difficult was it to have a career in the tech industry?
I don’t have a tech background, but I’ve always worked at tech companies. The question for me was never how to break into tech but rather how to evolve, develop, and acquire new skills to adapt to this fast-paced industry.
What is your greatest professional achievement?
Being able to see how people I have supported, trained, coached, and mentored succeed in their careers.
Do you have any failures in mind that helped you grow professionally?
Yes! Quite a few. I used to be very shy but the biggest lesson I’ve learnt is that it is not enough to have a sit on the table, you also need to make sure you also have a voice and speak up!
How do you overcome challenges and find new strength to carry on with your work?
Never forget your WHY. Understanding your purpose keeps you going, even in difficult situations.
What motivates you every day?
My family. I’m very grateful to have a very supportive husband and two teenagers at home that teach me new things everyday.
What is your passion?
I love dancing and learning languages!
What is your inspiration?
I’m lucky to have quite a few fantastic role models around me that inspire me to become a better version of myself every day. Also knowing that we really rise by lifting others.
What do you love about your job?
I’m surrounded by very smart people in an extremely future oriented industry. Data & AI is one of the hottest topics nowadays. I can learn something new every day but also share my knowledge.
Why is it important to have more women in the tech industry?
There is a significant correlation between diversity and company performance. Diverse teams perform better, are better at making decisions, are more innovative, creative, productive, and effective!
What can be done to encourage more women to enter the tech industry?
We need to offer more flexibility to make sure we don’t lose women on the way to higher management. If you have more female tech leaders, you will attract also more female young talent.
What lessons have you learned so far in your career?
Don’t take anything for granted. If you don’t address your challenges and talk about your achievements, nobody will do that for you.
What would you advise yourself when you were 20 years old?
Always speak up if you have a differing opinion; you might be contributing to the solution of problems that no one else has identified yet!