Every year the National Diversity Council selects a group of businesswomen they feel contributed to significant business growth, strategic direction, have a proven track record of success in their area of expertise and most of all serve as effective role models who inspire other aspiring professionals. In 2016, Pizza Hut was lucky to have one of these powerful women work under our roof. Carol Clements, Chief Information Officer, earned the distinction of being one of 2016’s Most Powerful Businesswomen in Texas, and we had a chance to chat with her about what it means to be powerful (and which device she just can’t live without).
Hut Life: You were named by the National Diversity Council as one of the Most Powerful Businesswomen in Texas! What does it mean to you to be “powerful,” and is that something you feel the need to keep in mind as you go about your day-to-day?
Carol Clements: I don’t really think of myself as powerful, but I am part of an incredibly powerful team. I am surrounded by a talented group of people who are working together to make a meaningful impact on our business. They challenge me to be better every day, and it’s so inspiring to see the results they deliver! My day-to-day focus is really about removing roadblocks so that they can do their best work.
HL: What is your personal stance on diversity and inclusion in the workplace?
CC: Those who know me know that my personal passion is traveling, especially experiencing new cultures and seeing the world through different lenses. It started when I was very young, and has been a huge part of shaping my attitudes and perspectives throughout my life. During my professional career I’ve learned time and time again that teams are at their best when they have a diverse set of views to influence their decision making. And as a global brand, we are at our best when we create an environment that embraces diversity and promotes different ways of thinking.
HL: What was your first leadership position, and what do you think was the most important lesson you learned from it?
CC: My first leadership position was Manager of Business Intelligence at an airline. After being in the position about a year, I began to really understand how fortunate I was to have had a strong female leader and mentor that saw my potential and was willing to invest in helping me grow. She helped me to realize that one of the most important responsibilities of a leader is to see potential in others and help grow future leaders. To this day, I still do all I can to pay that forward.
HL: What would your advice be to the other aspiring powerful businesswomen out there?
CC: Don’t feel pressure to conform to the stereotypes or norms you hear about for women in business. Your uniqueness is a big part of the value you bring to the table. Stay true to yourself, trust your instincts, and seek out mentors who will help you grow.
HL: What’s your biggest tech nerd habit?
CC: There are so many to choose from!! Lately I’ve been geeking out with home automation. When I turn in my driveway, my security alarm disarms, my door unlocks, and my lights turn on. If I get hot or cold inside my house, I just tell my voice-activated device to adjust the thermostat. I’m not sure if that makes me nerdy or just plain lazy!
Well, Carol certainly didn’t get where she is by being lazy, so if anyone deserves some tech convenience, it’s definitely one of Texas’ Most Powerful Businesswomen! We’re proud to have Carol as a part of Pizza Hut and look forward to the innovations that she and her team will bring to the brand.