Mary Gay Olsen | Euronet Software Solutions | Senior Director of Software Development
Career Evolution… I have been lucky enough to work for the same company my entire career. I started as a programmer for Arkansas Systems, which was later purchased by Euronet – offering to work for free for 2 weeks when they weren’t sure they wanted to hire me. At that time we did it all… developed the code for a customer, installed it, trained them and supported them with any issues that they encountered. Over time I recognized areas that we needed including documentation, change management and standards. I was given the opportunity to continue to grow over the years and expand my experiences into a lot of different areas.
Beginning Interests… I always thought I was going to be a teacher. But then I took the one computer class that was offered in high school and some programming classes in my first two years of college. The troubleshooting and getting the programs to work was fun. I transferred to UA Little Rock in my junior year of college and found the new computer information systems major in the business department; I realized you could combine the technical and not so technical together.
Day at Work… There really is no typical day, which is what makes it challenging and exciting. In a day I might be working with a customer or colleague in another country to troubleshoot an issue or brainstorm how to get something done; working with our product management and development teams to determine the details for a new product or feature and help bring it to fruition; working with our QA team on testing or troubleshooting; or working with our technical writers to research or explain something they are documenting.
LOVE the Work… I have the opportunity to work with the nicest and hardest working people that you have ever met – in Little Rock and around the world. There is nothing more satisfying than working together to resolve the challenges that each day brings whether it’s technical or non-technical in nature.
Surprising but True… People skills and teamwork are just as important as your technical skills – being able to work with others and communicate effectively.
Advice… Be proactive and contribute to whatever you are working on and don’t be afraid to share your knowledge with those around you. Work hard, take risks and think outside of the box. If you see something that needs to be done – do it. Most of all have a positive attitude, treat others with respect and have fun.
These wonder women are redefining what “full STEAM ahead” means in Arkansas. With exciting careers in science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics – each reflects WIT (Women in Tech) and true grit for making the most of every opportunity. Here’s to the powHER of knowledge.
Photography by Sarah Oden