BoardOfDirectorsPanelSession.jpgMercedes Johnson and Marilyn Matz are an integral part of the “Teradyne Story,” serving on the Board of Directors and boasting extraordinary professional backgrounds. These women took the time to sit down with Teradyne employees and share their experiences in a panel session centered on Inspiring Leadership.

With over 100 people in attendance, the conversation was driven by employee-submitted questions. These thought-provoking questions prompted an insightful discussion and gave attendees the opportunity to gain a broader perspective of what it means to be a leader.

Common themes emerged within the conversation and Mercedes and Marilyn provided reflective responses to each.

On facing challenges…
Never let the initial stumbles slow you down. Whatever the challenge, you can’t give up. You have to show everyone what you’re capable of. (Mercedes Johnson)

You’re never prepared for your next role. At the same time, you’re never going to grow unless you get out of your comfort zone. You have to go for it, accept and embrace the next challenge. (Marilyn Matz)

On success….
There are two types of successful companies – companies that’re successful because of their products and companies that’re successful because of their people. Companies that depend on the success of their products often have a harder time succeeding because there’s a lifecycle and timestamp associated with their success. That is, the company lives and dies by the performance of its products. However, companies that’re successful because of their people are destined for continued success. Their employees will continually reinvent themselves no matter what happens. (Mercedes Johnson)

On experiencing failure….
The first step in moving on is to admit that you’ve failed and think about how you could’ve done things differently. (Mercedes Johnson)

Leaders must be vulnerable and open to sharing their stories. This helps to foster an environment in which people feel that they have permission to make mistakes. Otherwise, employees will become paralyzed by the fear of failure. (Marilyn Matz)

On demonstrating leadership traits….
Honesty and integrity – all great leaders should manage their lives, careers and people who work for them with these values. Leaders should be focused, determined, perseverant. If you get knocked down, get back up again. (Mercedes Johnson)

Care for, be nice to and respect the people you work with. (Marilyn Matz)

On offering advice….
Take responsibility for your own career and motivation. Communicate your vision and goals to your managers and peers. (Mercedes Johnson)

Don’t stay still – you should keep moving, keep learning. (Marilyn Matz)

Thank you to all who contributed questions and participated in this interactive discussion! We look forward to hosting similar events in the future.

About the Panelists

Mercedes Johnson has more than 25 years of financial management experience in technology-driven global businesses. Ms. Johnson was the Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Avago Technologies Limited from 2005 to 2008. Prior to Avago Technologies, she was the CFO of Lam Research Corporation and held other various senior financial management positions. Ms. Johnson holds a degree in Accounting from the University of Buenos Aires and has been a Director of Teradyne since July 2014.

Marilyn Matz has more than 35 years of experience in automation and software analytics related technologies. Ms. Matz is the cofounder and CEO of Paradigm4, a software company that empowers data scientists. Prior to Paradigm4, Ms. Matz cofounded Cognex, a leader in vision systems, where she held a variety of leadership positions in engineering and in business operations. Ms. Matz earned Computer Science degrees from both Syracuse University and MIT and has been a Director of Teradyne since July 2017.