That is how Marissa Dunell approaches life, both personally and professionally, so when applications for the Women in Leadership scholarship program opened last year, she sat down and reflected on her leadership goals, submitted her responses to the questions and was thrilled when she learned had been chosen alongside four other women – Jill Rossouw, Elina Spilia, Rachel Fink and Nancy Hau.
As Director, Internal Communications, Marissa works across IFM to connect our people to purpose and strategy, bringing together different teams to understand how we all contribute to our success and to highlight the programs of work underway across IFM that influence or impact us all in some way.
“Being part of the Women in Leadership program has been an amazing opportunity to develop my leadership skills. This has not only helped support my career personally, it also enables me to better support IFM by being a better leader,” outlined Marissa.
Marissa chose to attend INSEAD, where she participated in ‘Leading for Results’, designed to build the skills and awareness needed to create a culture of achievement to promote long-term growth and develop emerging and future leaders.
“Throughout the program we looked at our own leadership style and evaluated our strengths and weaknesses. We learned about how we can set direction for individuals and teams to help create a high-performance culture, including different ways to help inspire and motivate people. I learned so much about myself, what my unique style adds, and where I need to focus my attention for improvement.
“Being part of global cohort was phenomenal. The collective learnings were very powerful and provided me with so many perspectives to consider. There were open and authentic discussions on everything from corporate strategy to having the right emotional mindset to progress forward with challenges,” said Marissa.
In addition to the course, Marissa was matched with an Executive Sponsor, Kyle Mangini, Global Head of Infrastructure, as part of the scholarship program.
“The opportunity to spend time with Kyle has been invaluable. He has provided me with poignant advice to help me reflect on the way I approach work at IFM and what I should be thinking about to advance my leadership aspirations. Kyle also asks excellent questions that cut to the core of what I am challenged by, which has been a real benefit for me.”
The final piece of the scholarship – the connection with other women in the program – was something Marissa really appreciated in being able to get to know other female leaders from IFM and have conversations about their careers, and to lean into a network where you can both get and give advice to support other women.
The Women in Leadership Scholarship program will run bi-annually with the next group of scholars to be selected in 2024.