Cover Story: Direct Marketer of the Year: Sandy Carter
"[She is a] business thought leader, but a practitioner," Owyang says. "She knows her stuff. She articulates it incredibly well and she represents IBM in a very professional, yet human way. You know, IBM, let's be honest, is known as a big, giant, blue logo. Very corporate. They wear suits. And she's a warm, smiling woman who connects with people at a human level and truly lives social business as that type of person."
Carter Is Giving Back
Carter is a woman in the overwhelmingly male-dominated field of technology. (See The Tech Gender Gap sidebar.) It's a fact Carter acknowledges but doesn't dwell on.
Hurwitz alludes to Carter's push past the soft sexism of lowered expectations. When Carter became a mother, Hurwitz says "some people assumed that … she would be less driven and have more of a softer approach … but I think that they were probably disappointed, because she was as driven as ever."
Still in an upbeat tone, which Carter maintains except when she speaks with intensity about her love of marketing, Carter cites Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg's book, "Lean In." Carter says she finds it "fascinating" that women are introduced by name, title and number of children; while men are introduced by name, title and number of career accomplishments.
"I'm proud of being a mom and being able to achieve what I've been blessed to achieve while being a mom," Carter says. "I think it's important for people to know that they can do both. They don't have to sacrifice being a mom. Nor would I ever want someone to sacrifice that."
Years ago, the need for camaraderie among IBM women prompted Carter to found the "Super Women's Group," which now has 18,000 members. The group is linked to Women in Technology International (WITI), where Carter chairs the advisory board and recently "initiated, developed and led a very successful social media campaign for the WITI Summit," says Carolyn Leighton, WITI's chairwoman and founder.