Dominika Walker – Connecting Cities!

In this blog, #YesSheCan speaks to Dominika Walker. Dominika works in the Telecoms sector as a City Manager. She spends her days supporting businesses and families to access the internet to help them achieve their goals!

 

Tell us more about your role….

My role as a City Manager is incredibly fulfilling. You get to engage with stakeholders and communities at different levels. You learn from each other and help others to ultimately achieve the same goals; develop a smart city model, help boost someone else’s digital skills and improve people’s digital wellbeing. I truly believe that communities are at the heart of our full fibre networks projects and I look forward to working with everyone to help make a change in their lives. I’m currently working with local organisations in Derby, including Derby City Council and D2N2, to share knowledge on jobs of the future and improving digital skills among school and college children which I’m particularly looking forward to.

 

Can you tell us a bit about you…..

I was born in Poland in the 1980s in a small, incredibly picturesque town called Wabrzezno (I bet you’re trying to pronounce it now? ?), where I lived until my A-Levels. At this time, it was all about playing handball in a junior club in Poland, representing the country at world championships, learning languages and listening to music from the 90s and 00s.

After collecting my high-school results, I went on to study at the Teacher’s Training College of Foreign Languages in Bydgoszcz, Poland, with a view to becoming an English teacher. But I wasn’t entirely sure this was what I wanted to do. When, after a year, an opportunity came to study abroad, I didn’t hesitate and took a gap year from the College, moving to the UK. I started a joint degree BA(Hons) degree in Media and Communication and Marketing at the University of Wolverhampton and after graduating (the gap year had long expired) I moved on to studying a MA in Media Enterprise at Birmingham City University.

During my studies in the UK, I was lucky enough to work for some exciting companies in PR, press, media, editorial, software and telecoms. It hasn’t been a smooth ride at all and only thanks to determination and hard work could I achieve my goals and progress in my career.

What is a typical day for you?

My typical day at CityFibre involves engaging with key city stakeholders, local communities (both residents and businesses) and spreading the Gigabit City message far and wide via a multi-channel approach. My aim is to light the city CityFibre green, even if that means dressing like an elf for a bit of humour (this really happened).

We’re living in the digital age so thanks to technology and connectivity I’m able to speak with people in various locations without the need for travelling, while ensuring we all stay up-to-date and work efficiently. Great connectivity really is a game-changer.

What made you choose this career/industry?

I never thought I’d land a career in telecoms, but when I read more about the industry and truly understood the importance of the internet and connectivity in the modern world, I immediately felt drawn to CityFibre. There’s nothing more fulfilling than receiving some great positive stories from local communities about how internet has changed their lives for the better. E-health, online interviews and applying for jobs online, remote working, keeping in touch with friends and family, enabling the development of digital skills and online learning are only a handful of benefits regularly mentioned.

How did you get to where you are now and did you face any challenges along the way?

If it hadn’t been for strong determination, hard-work, constant passion for learning new things and a positive attitude, I’m convinced I wouldn’t have been able to get to where I am now. These are the lessons I’ve learnt since high school and particularly from the time of my studies and first work experiences here in the UK. They helped me overcome challenges like being turned down for jobs, being made redundant or hitting the glass ceiling with no way to progress.

What do you think gave you the drive and determination to succeed?

It has to be my constant passion for learning and making a real difference wherever I go, as well as personal and professional development.

What is your biggest achievement in life?

Firstly, it must be leaving my home country and starting new life in the UK; and secondly, surviving in a foreign country and not doing a bad job of it.

What is the biggest lesson that you’ve learnt along the way?

Be honest, transparent and don’t be afraid to try new things or voice your opinion.

Do you have a mantra you live your life by?

Be honest, transparent and don’t be afraid to try new things or voice your opinion.

What three tips would you give to career women?

  • If you like it, just apply for it and enjoy
  • A bit of humour is always important
  • Learn from others and give back by sharing your knowledge too

What are your key motivators?

Seeing the work I’m doing make a real difference, changing people’s lives for the better.

If an opportunity comes up, go for it!

What advice do you have for women aiming for leadership positions?

If an opportunity comes up, go for it!

Get in contact!

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