Women in IT: Jeanne Grundtvig Theander Laisbo

10 May 2023

"Creating meaningful change through leadership and process optimization drives me."
Jeanne Laisbo initially studied economics and computer science at Copenhagen Business School, but today sits as Chief Marketing Officer and is responsible for Marketing, Employer Branding, and Recruitment at Delegate. In her own words, she is still a "computer geek," and she uses that in her work every day.

Looking solely at her academic credentials, Jeanne Laisbo, with an education in computer science and economics, could just as easily be among the consultants at Delegate as she could be the Chief Marketing Officer. 

Her leadership experience stems from the military, where she served six years as an officer at Skive Kaserne before starting her studies in 1998. Today, she sees her primary task as setting the direction for her team and reaching goals by creating motivated colleagues willing to take responsibility. 

"I set high demands and expectations for my talented colleagues. I exhibit a high level of trust. The well-being and development of my employees are crucial for our collective success. It requires motivated employees who are willing to take responsibility. It's a natural part of their development that they also make mistakes - because that's often where the learning is hidden." 

As Chief Marketing Officer, Jeanne is responsible for strategy, development, employee development, and budgeting within everything related to marketing: 

"What drives me is creating meaningful change through leadership and process optimization, and my primary task is to set the direction, ensure progress, and reach our goals safely." 

"Since I completed my computer science studies, fortunately, more women have entered the IT industry, but still not enough. Companies and society must recognize and challenge the barriers that hinder women in the IT industry."

Strategic Focus on Data

Jeanne applies her background from the military and CBS daily in the team, characterized by a strong structure and a data-driven marketing approach. 

"Everything is defined within fixed frameworks and built upon templates to achieve a unique overview. We need to know what we're doing and why we're doing it. But we are also a creative team where there should be room to try out new ideas." 

Almost all marketing efforts are tracked, including the website, social media, emails, campaigns, etc. 

"By combining the team's creative resources with a data-driven strategy, we can produce sharp and relevant content that creates the greatest possible business value." 

Diversity in the IT Industry is Necessary

Although progress is being made, women are still significantly underrepresented in IT companies and IT education. In the consulting industry in general, only 13.5 percent of top executives are women, while 36 percent of consultants are women. Furthermore, women leave the consulting industry faster. 

"I find it interesting to look at why women - like myself - pursue an IT education and then don't use it in certain areas of the industry. My educational background makes a lot of sense in my current position. Still, I should be involved in IT service delivery because the industry needs a qualified workforce." 

Without an active effort to bring more women on board, the IT industry will continue to face a shortage of skilled professionals in the future. 

"Since I completed my computer science studies, fortunately, more women have entered the IT industry, but still not enough. Companies and society must recognize and challenge the barriers that hinder women in the IT industry." 

As the person responsible for recruitment, Jeanne also strongly emphasizes diversity. 

"At Delegate, we aim to promote development by challenging our biases and prejudices and demonstrating that there are many different paths into the industry. It's challenging to find qualified candidates for jobs in the IT industry, so we simply cannot afford not to try to change the status quo. We do that, among other things, by focusing on female role models, and we are currently implementing a new leadership standard in terms of equality and diversity called DS 5001." 

What would you say to a woman considering entering the IT industry? 

"Do it! The IT industry is extremely innovative and constantly evolving; just look at ChatGPT. You will be part of the future if you choose a career in IT, and you can tailor your job according to your interests."