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Spotlight Series: Aisha Mendez, Head of UK AI & Automation, Infosys Consulting

Aisha Mendez

ARTICLE SUMMARY

Aisha Mendez, Head of the UK AI & Automation team at Infosys Consulting, shares her journey and insights. From strategic shifts to breaking barriers, she emphasises the importance of resilience, mentorship, and embracing authenticity.

Aisha Mendez is Head of the UK AI & Automation team at Infosys Consulting.

Aisha has held senior AI and automation roles at BNP Paribas and IBM, and now advises some of the world’s biggest companies in their AI strategy and implementation for Infosys Consulting. In her current role, Aisha is responsible for orchestrating end-to-end transformation programs, technology implementation and also large-scale re-engineering and digitisation initiatives, invariably rooted in data science and pure tech paradigms. 

How did you land your current role? Was it planned?

My current role was the result of both serendipity and strategy. I was content in my previous position, but the opportunity to join my current company presented a new challenge—leveraging AI and machine learning to deliver innovative solutions across various industries. The decision to shift back into consulting and utilize a broad spectrum of disruptive technologies was unplanned but aligned perfectly with my career aspirations.

What are the key roles in your field of work, and why did you choose your current expertise?  

Key roles in my field include data scientists, AI specialists, and strategic consultants, each playing a pivotal part in shaping technological solutions. My expertise lies in integrating AI with operational strategies to drive efficiency—a choice inspired by my passion for operational excellence and my fascination with the potential of AI to transform businesses.

Did you (or do you) have a role model in tech or business in general?  

Role models in tech, particularly women who’ve broken barriers, have been influential.

One standout example from my graduate program was a woman whose resilience and determination in the face of adversity taught me the importance of fighting for my beliefs in the tech industry.

What are you most proud of in your career, so far?  

I am most proud of the recognition I’ve received for leadership in technology, exemplified by awards like the ‘Woman Leader in Technology’ and the ‘ Award for Excellence.’ (which looks like an Oscar!) However, the moments that stand out are those when young women approach me for advice, aspiring to follow a similar path—that’s what truly drives me, and such encounters leave me smiling for days.

What does an average work day look like for you?  

An average workday is bustling, with a focus on empowering my team. It involves strategic delegation, mentoring up-and-coming talents, and addressing a myriad of people-related challenges. This approach ensures that we’re not just delivering on tasks but also growing as a cohesive unit.

Are there any specific skills or traits that you notice companies look for when you’re searching for roles in your field?  

Companies often seek individuals who are not only technically proficient but also possess strong leadership qualities, the ability to work collaboratively, and a knack for creative problem-solving—skills that enable them to navigate the complexities of today’s tech landscape.

Has anyone ever tried to stop you from learning and developing in your professional life, or have you found the tech sector supportive?  

While I have faced passive resistance at times, my growth has been largely supported by the tech sector. I’ve learned to address challenges head-on, calling out bias and relying on a network of advocates who support and inspire my professional development.

Have you ever faced insecurities and anxieties during your career, and how did you overcome them?  

Certainly, insecurities and anxieties are part of the journey. I’ve found that acknowledging them and pushing through with the knowledge that I will find a solution has been key to overcoming these challenges.

Entering the world of work can be daunting. Do you have any words of advice for anyone feeling overwhelmed?  

My advice is to anchor yourself in what you’re passionate about. When work aligns with your interests, it doesn’t just bring success—it brings fulfilment and joy, making the challenges worth navigating.

What advice would you give other women wanting to reach their career goals in technology?  

I encourage women to embrace their authentic selves and build a support network. Don’t shy away from reaching out to other women, join professional groups, and seek mentors.

Remember, your uniqueness is your strength, and there’s a community ready to support you.

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