"Mapping Your Future" by Dr. Latha Ramchand


“Mapping Your Future” – by Dean Latha Ramchand

“Go Do it” were three simple words of empowerment that were used by Dean Latha Ramchand of the C.T Bauer College of Business, UH, in her talk “Mapping Your Future” when addressing women from various businesses and professions. Organized by IACCGH and sponsored by Shell, the talk was held on November 13, 2013 at Hess Club as part of the annual “Women in Leadership Series.”

Program Chair and Chamber Board Member, Joya Shukla welcomed the gathering of about 40 women who had assembled to learn how they could tap their potential to further their career goals. She also introduced the keynote speaker.  A well-known speaker, Dean Ramchand spoke about the significantly low number of women in high positions but strongly believed that women have the potential and can equip themselves with the right tools to change this.

With the help of a power point presentation, Dean Ramchand explained that a good start off point is to map a career chart.  An important step is building expertise or as she put it – “whoever owns the language owns the conversation”.  The importance of networking, having a clear vision for the future and lastly mapping goals were other steps that could help one achieve their career goal. One must also rise above self-doubts and a sense of victimization.

The women were also encouraged to take stock of their Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) that they perceived about themselves and the threats they faced in their workplace when overcoming challenges. Setting specific, measurable annual objectives and how to achieve these objectives, according to Dean Ramchand, “would help a person understand how to set a goal for a desired outcome.” Once a goal has been set, it is important to equip one’s self with the right tools, be it through education, attending training programs and seminars or even improving one’s communication skills. Only then can women “overcome what’s holding them back and move forward.”

Dean Ramchand’s openness encouraged the participants to share their experiences, strengths, weaknesses and goals and helped make the session extremely interactive, lively and interesting. She also promised a follow up session where she would help walk the participants through their career maps.

Some common sentiments echoed by the participants:

“It’s good to be reminded that you are not alone in finding the path to leadership, in your career and community. This is driving me to develop a strategy towards my passion versus my career experience”- Marissa Saenz

“The women’s in leadership series featuring Dean Latha’s talk was informative, and inspirational. It was wonderful to meet so many accomplished and successful women within a limited amount of time. Please keep up the good work!”- Runsi Sen

“Enjoyed hearing from other women and their perspectives! It was helpful to hear that their experiences have been similar to mine.”-Graciela Saenz