Elisabeth Staudinger has been Head of Siemens Healthineers in Asia Pacific since 2018. She began her career with Siemens right after graduating from college in 1998 as a trainee in Global Procurement and Logistics in Munich. She later held several management positions at Siemens Healthineers in Germany and China. “For me, when I was growing up and starting my work life, I never thought much about this distinction ‘I’m a woman and these are men’,” she recalls. “It was always about how I can contribute.”
What helped Elisabeth become the leader she is today was her family, who showed her that she can achieve anything. “Especially in the early years, I probably didn’t fully understand what my strengths were, and there were people who helped me find out, or who told me ‘Try this, I think you’ll do a really good job’,” she says. Her first boss, for example, gave her the opportunity to do challenging work at a point in time when she may not have volunteered herself: “He just said ‘Well, if you want to you can do it, I’ll give you the opportunity’.” After that experience, she never hesitated to go for an opportunity that presented itself.
Would she do anything differently today? “No.” When she started her career, she was looking for how she could contribute and how she could make a difference, and she still has that attitude today. Here’s what she’d like to pass on to other women: “Don’t be shy about taking on a challenge. I’ve always enjoyed being challenged.”One aspect is especially important to Elisabeth: “I want to nurture different cultures and, in addition to promoting diversity, foster inclusion.” To do this, Elisabeth is working with her regional teams to define specific goals. Today, each country has two to four goals that are clearly defined and measurable. “We’re not just working on the goals in order to welcome and embrace diversity; we’re working to change the gender mix and create change in places where we believe there’s room for improvement.” Thus, Elisabeth and her team want to build a workplace where everyone can reach their full potential.