An Exclusive Ideagen Interview with Microsoft’s Gretchen O’Hara with Ideagen Global Chief Operating Officer, Leif Ackerman

Leif Ackerman: I am here with Gretchen O’Hara, Vice President of US Go-to-Market for One Commercial Partner at Microsoft. Thank you for joining us today, Gretchen, pleasure to have you here.

Gretchen O’Hara: Oh, thank you, very excited to be here.

Leif Ackerman: We’ll talk about the upcoming Annual Ideagen Empowering Women & Girls Summit at the United Nations and what you’re working on with Microsoft to empower women and girls and specifically how you’re forming initiatives to create that sustainability. What inspired you to join Microsoft?

Gretchen O’Hara: I’ve been at Microsoft for about 13 years and two things related to empowering women and girls have really inspired me throughout my career. The first is our mission, which is bigger than any one person. It’s about empowering every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. When you look at a company that’s about bringing greater good and about making the individual, not just the company, better that’s something that personally I get very excited about.

The second reason I stay so passionate about Microsoft is that we are continually driving innovation. As a leader, being innovative requires that you continue to evolve, continue to be open to new possibilities, and continue to seek change where needed throughout your organization. Ongoing learning - we call it having a “growth mindset” - is a centerpiece of this and a core value here at Microsoft. It starts with the individual but collectively having a growth mindset enables innovation at the team level, the organizational level and even outside of the organization within whole communities. This idea that we will continually grow, learn and innovate is a key strategy to achieving our mission.