Life at Gem

Gem celebrates International Women’s Day

Lauren Shufran

Lauren Shufran

Content Strategist

Posted on

March 8, 2021

It’s Women’s History Month and today is International Women’s Day; so we wanted to acknowledge some of the Gems who make us who we are.

We’re also spending the day doing some reflecting. (If you’d like to read our CEO Steve Bartel’s reflections on International Women’s Day this year, they’re here.) While we’re proud to be able to say that 44% of our Gems identify as women, that gender equity has been a priority since Gem’s inception, and that diversity remains emphatically a core value of ours, we also recognize that we’re in an industry—not to mention a world—that continues to reckon with a substantial gender gap in everything from employee retention to representation in leadership, and in which gender bias and inequity continue. 

If nothing else, 2020 showed us all that we still have a lot to learn and a lot of work to do if we hope to see continued progress in both our industry and our world. International Women’s Day is, in part, meant to raise awareness of the gaps we still have to close, the battles that are ongoing and require us to be on the frontlines, and the ways in which we need to hold each accountable for being there. But it’s also a day to publicly honor and celebrate the remarkable, powerful, generous, kind, and brilliant women in our lives, and—at Gem—to renew our commitment to the ambitious goals around gender representation we have in a year in which we plan to more-than-double our headcount, while actively seeking out opportunities to challenge gender bias and inequality.

As for the honoring-and-celebrating, here are some of the Gems that we simply wouldn’t be “Gem” without:

Noor Gharbo, Sales Development Team Lead


How would you describe what you do at Gem in one sentence?

I work on offering solutions to companies around their sourcing process.

What feels most exciting to you about your job right now?

The collaboration! I get to work with the most amazing people; and I learn something new every day.

What would you say is your greatest strength?

My optimism!

Who are your female role models (and why)?

My mother, because she has always made the impossible possible. She taught me that everything is doable, you just need to figure out what it is you're looking to do, and the plan will follow suit.

What SDR Manager Catherine Ladd has to say about Noor: 

“Not only is Noor a fierce and creative prospector who has had lots of success booking meetings with many of our top target accounts, but she’s also the epitome of a team player — both on the sales team as well as across other teams at Gem. What I appreciate most about Noor is how she always celebrates team wins, shares best practices back with the team, and helps uplift everyone around her. Noor also has a way of making challenging tasks and situations fun, which is what makes her a great Team Lead.”

Einas Haddad, Engineering Manager


How would you describe what you do at Gem in one sentence?

I lead an engineering team that is focused on expanding Gem’s usage once we’ve landed new customers, and preventing customers from churning.

What feels most exciting to you about your job right now?

I get to work with a fantastic team and I get to help each individual grow in their career!

What would you say is your greatest strength?

Listening to people and building relationships.

Who are your female role models (and why)?

Since it’s Women's History Month I'll go with a historic figure, Ada Lovelace. She is known to be the world's first computer programmer! She worked with Charles Babbage who originated the idea of the first digital computer and she developed the first algorithm (one that would calculate a sequence of Bernoulli numbers).

What our Head of Engineering Mike Pinkowish has to say about Einas:

“Einas has always stood out as someone who fosters safe spaces and brings people closer together. That’s why it was no surprise to me that, as a first-time engineering manager with a distributed team, she built an exemplary team with the strongest community and cohesion. Einas’s leadership by example will enable us to positively scale the engineering org and entire company for years to come.”

Nathalie Grandy, Technical Recruiter


How would you describe what you do at Gem in one sentence?

I am beyond fortunate to work with the best and brightest to hire for our engineering team. The recruiter life chose me.

What feels most exciting to you about your job right now?

The ability to build out processes and teams from the ground up and to see the impact of the work of those we've hired.

Who are your female role models (and why)?

Kamala Harris. She’s breaking cultural and gender-related barriers left and right. She’s a strong woman who isn't afraid to stand up for herself and advocate for other women around her.

What our Head of People Caroline Stevenson has to say about Nathalie

Nathalie is one of the most energetic, positive, and enthusiastic recruiters I've ever gotten to work with. She's also very creative - often thinking outside the box and coming up with new solutions to problems, or just changing up old routines (like introducing a "dancing" ice breaker at our team meetings). Her energy is infectious and she is a very loved member of the recruiting team.”

Katarina Makmuri, Product Manager


How would you describe what you do at Gem in one sentence?

I define which problems our team should solve next.

What feels most exciting to you about your job right now?

Gem has some exciting new features in the works! I work with an amazing team, and we're looking forward to hearing back from our customers and users about these features.

What would you say is your greatest strength?

Curiosity is one of the most underrated superpowers: it helps me as a PM deeply understand user problems, helps me climb out of imposter syndrome (check out Gem's webinar on this topic!), and gives me a zest in life.

Who are your female role models (and why)?

I'm still gutted over RBG's passing. She excelled at a time when she was explicitly and continually discouraged due to her sex, and I'm grateful to women like her who've helped younger generations—no matter their gender identity—understand what's possible.

What our Head of Product Sarah Koo has to say about Katarina:

“Katarina inspires me because she’s always always looking for ways to improve — whether improving some aspect of our team, helping our culture be more inclusive, or just up-leveling herself, Katarina pushes us all to strive for more, and that makes me grateful for and confident in the solid foundation of the team we have now as we scale Gem and double in size this year.”

Caroline Stevenson, Head of People


How would you describe what you do at Gem in one sentence?

I lead the People team.

What feels most exciting to you about your job right now?

Getting to work with such amazing people and working to double the size of the company in 2021!

What would you say is your greatest strength?

Structured thinking! I love breaking down ambiguous problems :)

Who are your female role models (and why)?

My mom! She started a successful business in a very male-dominated industry (finance), all while she was battling cancer and raising 2 children. She's a superhero!

What our CEO Steve Bartel has to say about Caro:

“Caroline is one of my most trusted partners at Gem. I know that if I have something I need help with, Caroline will always be there to support me and offer up advice. There's no problem Caro can't solve when she puts her mind to it. Her ability to navigate ambiguous + complex people & recruiting problems, and arrive at practical solutions quickly, makes her an invaluable member of Gem's leadership team.

Kelly Menold, Campaign Manager


How would you describe what you do at Gem in one sentence?

I help spread the word about how valuable Gem is for recruiting, and hopefully convince them they need to speak with our sales team.

What feels most exciting to you about your job right now?

I am the most excited about the opportunity Gem as a company has right now. I love working at startups because I really enjoy the energy and excitement there is around the entire company - everyone working together to try to be the next big thing. At Gem, it feels like we have a real opportunity to be a unicorn and you can feel the energy throughout the organization. It's exciting for me as a marketer to be able to contribute to that and hopefully help our brand and company grow to achieve those goals.

What would you say is your greatest strength?

My greatest strength is attention to detail. I always consider the details of everything and how one thing may impact another. It definitely helps me do my job because I consider all the different components of a marketing campaign before agreeing to launch, and I make sure everything has been thought through. It also means I ask a lot of questions :)

Who are your female role models (and why)?

My female role model is my mom. She faced some challenges, but she never gave up on her career dreams and aspirations. Her perseverance is what gives me motivation to work hard and become a leader.

What our Head of Marketing Sara Kinsey has to say about Kelly:

“Kelly has both an eye for strategy and an eye for details. These two skills combined together make her a fantastic marketer and teammate. Everyone who works with Kelly knows her to be unfailingly trustworthy. Something I deeply appreciate about Kelly is how she will give feedback and question the status quo. I am a better marketer and manager because of Kelly, and our team delivers better campaigns and leads because Kelly is on the team. Thank you, Kelly!”

Stephanie Chou, Sales Development Representative


How would you describe what you do at Gem in one sentence?

Making sure people are aware of Gem and the amazing things we're doing here!

What feels most exciting to you about your job right now?

Being part of a team that continues to exceed our goals and crush quotas!

What would you say is your greatest strength?

I've been told I'm pretty meticulous.

Who are your female role models (and why)?

Sheryl Sandberg - spoke at my graduation and inspired me to take risks

Beyonce - Queen B is a phenomenal artist and an incredible businesswoman! 

Shay Mitchell - I just love her! youtube, travel brand, affordable baby line, etc

Hilary Duff - my childhood role model made it out of Disney in one piece

What SDR Manager Catherine Ladd has to say about Stephanie: 

“Stephanie is incredible at building and nurturing relationships with prospects and truly embodies Gem’s value of being customer-focused. Some of the many things I appreciate about Steph are the way that she constantly looks out for her teammates, helps identify opportunities for our team, and recognizes wins across the company. Additionally, her operational strengths, consistency, and ability to bring levity to all situations are just a few of the reasons why Gem is a better company because of her!”

Teresa Au, Executive Customer Experience and Programs


What feels most exciting to you about your job right now?

I’m super energized and excited to be leading the charge in curating our executive customer programs while creating a community of amazing talent leaders who can change the world for the better when it comes to recruiting, nurturing and developing top talent together!

What would you say is your greatest strength?

This is such a hard question for me to answer so I asked someone I’ve known for a year. Someone I trust and regard as a colleague, partner, friend what they saw as my greatest strength. I share this because I agree with them”

“Teresa, your greatest strength is your courage. The courage to confront your fears and forge onward despite being scared and not knowing the outcome. You are doing things and going for it even though it may not be popular or easy, and likely counter to your initial programming but because you think it might be better And I find that wildly courageous.” :) 

Who are your female role models (and why)?

My mom. The most selfless human I know with a heart of gold. She’s also the most loving, compassionate, hardworking, brave, and giving person I’ve ever known. My mom sacrificed so much for me and my family so that we can have a better life in this land of opportunities. She is the most courageous woman I know even though she herself will find that hard to believe. My mom. My hero.

What our CEO Steve Bartel has to say about Teresa:

“Teresa has been a force for good on the Gem team. She brings a positive energy that supports us through the ups and downs and a unique perspective to every challenge we face. Teresa has also taught me and others to be more vulnerable and open in the workplace by leading through example and bringing her authentic self to work every single day. Thank you Teresa for being such a valued member of our team!”  

If you're as thrilled about the possibility of working with this amazing crew as we are to have them on our team, Gem's hiring this year, and we'd love to hear from you.


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