Nicole Brown is passionate about tech
5 minutes with WOMEN in CorporateMonday, June 07, 2021
OUR five-minute feature this week is with Nicole Brown, chairperson, KEEZ.
AW: What was your first experience with technology and what is your favourite piece of “tech” now?
NB: My early experience with technology was with electronic devices. Growing up, I delighted in taking them apart and getting them to work again. Now, my interest is in data and analytics; I often explore solutions leveraging IoT (Internet of things) tech.
AW: How did you get into tech and why are you passionate about the industry?
NB: I really got into tech when I was not able to afford my planned studies in engineering abroad and a friend suggested that I pursue computer science here in Jamaica. When I was exposed to programming I was immediately fascinated with the power of it, but my passion was fully ignited when I started working in the industry — that is when I realised that tech can really change companies and lives.
I continue to be passionate about the industry for those same reasons today as tech has undoubtedly changed the way we live. This has been further accelerated by the COVID-19 innovations around biometrics, etc, and within just a few years tech companies have become the top companies across the world. I am also excited to be part of a local real estate tech company, KEEZ, as their chairperson for the board of directors. The company has been able to revolutionise how we view properties, connect with agent brokers, and get mortgage pre-approvals digitally. I am most passionate about the opportunities that the tech space presents for young, bright, creative minds with an entrepreneurial spirit — and across the world we have seen solutions being built to solve real problems and change lives.
AW: As the chairperson for KEEZ, what is your overall role, your responsibility in the company? And do you believe more women should invest in the tech space?
NB: I saw the great potential of KEEZ as soon as I heard the concept, and I am very pleased to see that already KEEZ has started to change the real estate landscape with the largest database for real estate listings across Jamaica. Chairing such an auspicious board is an honour. My role is to harness the knowledge, experience, and insight of the team as we oversee the effective implementation of its strategy. Undoubtedly, more women should invest both their time and money in the tech space; the industry presents real opportunity for employment, value delivery and ultimately economic growth. Women bring a particular perspective that is strategic and aspirational yet practical, so I encourage more women to take on the challenge — it's exciting and rewarding!
AW: What's your advice for women who want to enter the male-dominated tech space?
NB: My advice to women is to get educated/trained in tech and jump in! Though currently male-dominated, several women have proven that we are up to the task. Jump in, focus on producing high-quality tech and on employing tech for value in business and let your work speak for itself.
AW: Finally, what's your go-to place for motivation/inspiration?
NB: Each day, I am grounded through my devotional time with God and I am motivated by the objectives I am pursuing. I learnt early in my career to always set ambitious improvement objectives and, though there are often obstacles, I am not daunted as I embrace the challenge of problem-solving.
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