Technology Blog - Q&A with Sandra Koselska

Technology Blog - Q&A with Sandra Koselska

By BNY Mellon

What first attracted you to a career in technology?


I have always enjoyed working in a dynamic environment so the pace of change in technology really appealed to me. Successful IT professionals are embedded in a culture of agile, continuous improvement and are always learning and developing their skills. I was really drawn to this growth mindset where creative thinking and problem-solving skills are applied to drive innovation every day.


How did you hear about BNY Mellon and what were your first impressions when you joined?


Before joining BNY Mellon I read a couple of articles about the company. I especially enjoyed an article by the Delivery Framework team within BNY Mellon’s technology describing one of their signature projects – es-libs.


When I joined the team, one of the things I very quickly appreciated, and continue to value, is the company’s culture of knowledge sharing and inclusivity. I had some IT experience from prior professional roles, but I had never worked directly on software development. However, my colleagues ensured I felt an integral part of the team from the start and were keen to help me progress. It has made so much difference in terms of accelerating my knowledge and growing my professional confidence.


What has been the biggest challenge you have faced so far in your career?


Since I did not study IT formally as part of my university course, it felt like a big step to apply for the role and an even bigger challenge to adapt to working alongside experienced IT professionals. At first it felt as if I had an awful lot to learn! However, I received fantastic support and encouragement from my co-workers. They helped me realize that by applying strong organizational and communications skills, and channeling my energy into learning and development, I would be able to quickly make a meaningful contribution to the team.


Apart from gaining the hands-on experience, what else has impacted your professional development?


I have been fortunate to take part in several mentoring programs, both as a mentor and as a mentee. Both experiences have been professionally and personally enriching. As a mentee, I benefited from many hours of engagement with my mentor over the course of one year which helped me to think longer-term and consider fresh perspectives on a situation or opportunity. I found that having a mentor was invaluable and I learned a lot from her rich experience which she was so generous to share with me.


This also inspired me to ‘pay it forward’. BNY Mellon works with a number of local organizations and through their association with NESsT and MamoPracuj I recently connected with a professional seeking a mentor. Our conversations are so enriching and it is very rewarding to support her as she embarks on her chosen career path. It is certainly something I will continue with, and I’m currently looking into the reverse mentoring program offered by BNY Mellon, where instead of mentoring an employee, the roles are reversed and that person would mentor me. This is a global program and a great opportunity to expand your network in the organization and gain different perspectives.


Which aspect of the company’s culture resonates most with you and why?

The company has a clear purpose and a set of values and behaviors. One of our values that I see in action every day is strength in diversity. In our day-to-day business interactions we actively seek out and include who is missing. From the day I first joined BNY Mellon, it was abundantly clear that this is a place where everyone is invested in each other’s success.


As a working parent, striking a work-life balance is crucial for me. BNY Mellon has several programs to support wellbeing and a range of family-friendly, inclusive employment policies and employee forums to support the engagement, development and advancement of every employee.


What advice would you give to someone considering a career in technology?


I think that there are many fulfilling career paths in technology and the most important attribute is to be inquisitive and open to new ways of thinking and working. I realized that no one expects you to know everything, but that knowledge sharing is vital to deliver on projects successfully and to continue to grow professionally.


A key consideration is working in an organization that can provide plenty of opportunity - one that invests in its people and has a supportive culture. I would also recommend seizing opportunities to be mentored, either informally or formally. If it is not offered by your company then seek it through trusted business contacts. I feel very fortunate to have developed my IT career at BNY Mellon; the company invests in its people in so many ways including mentoring and training. Together these elements can really power your professional success – possibly in ways you may not even consider at the outset.


Finally, while reviewing roles online is useful, it is invaluable to build your network and have informal conversations, especially if you are just starting out in your career. BNY Mellon regularly attends careers events and job fairs which provide great opportunities to connect with professionals in the industry.


Sandra Koselska joined BNY Mellon in 2020 as Project Manager responsible for Client Implementations within Global Risk Solutions organization unit. Currently Sandra’s role is Engineering Support POD Admin, inside EAAS team.


Explore open roles in BNY Mellon’s Wroclaw locations to find your new path.


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