Debbie Baird has a very interesting and winding path to her current role with Taranata Group. She went through School convinced a degree was the only option and that degree had to be Medicine. So, how did she end up in IT?
After not quite getting the grades, I was accepted into a medical school. It was all wrong for me, but I stuck it out for three years and then switched to do an Economics degree. I left with a 2:2 after seven years at university. I loved biology at school and had I studied biology, I would have gotten a better grade, however at the time everyone advised me that science degrees had no value.
I spent 20 years planning to be a doctor, but I was lost. I took various temporary roles after graduation whilst I figured out the direction of my path.
I loved Human Resources but couldn’t get a role to give me training. I did lots of admin jobs and ended up as a membership administrator at the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations where I was given projects with a focus on research and training. Eventually I got an internal promotion to trainee Policy Officer. I loved it and it was an amazing job. Then, the 2008 recession hit and I was made redundant. I ended up working as a PA for 18 months, however that role was made redundant too!
As luck would have it my husband’s business partner was starting a new consultancy business and he was keen to give me the opportunity to learn SharePoint and become a consultant for him. Without my Economics degree, I would not have got the policy job, and without the policy job I would not have got the consultancy job. The knowledge of policy and governance was crucial, without that experience I would not have ended up as an IT manager where I am today!
Had you told 17-year-old me this is what I would end up doing and loving, I would have called you mad! Life is full of unexpected twists. I love my job and wouldn’t change it.