I feel so often, especially as a woman of color, there is a lack of representation in the workplace. It affects me even to this day. My hope is through education, building relationships, and challenging myself every day to be better than I was the day before, I will surpass all of my career goals.”
Women, especially women of color, are most commonly experiencing the effects of a lack of representation in the workplace because they do not see many examples of people who look like them and share their backgrounds succeeding in their fields as often.
“Society tells me what I’m experiencing is ‘imposters syndrome,’ and while that is a popular term, I think the reality is that there are structural issues that we haven’t addressed—like lack of funding, lack of diversity in recruiting, poor inclusionary practices, etc.,” says Reid. “This leads to the feeling of doubt. When people say imposters syndrome, it feels like the ownness and burden are put on women to ‘fix.’”
Reid has enough on her plate as she simultaneously balances her MBA courses with a full-time position as the VP of product for the Zone’s mental wellness app for student-athletes. She utilizes resources available to her through her network and Kogod to continue educating herself.
I chose Kogod for the nurturing environment. The small program makes me feel a part of a community and keeps me motivated.”
Outside of the classroom, Reid is responsible for coming up with ideas, feature roadmaps, content strategies, workflows, executing designs, and collaborating with the development team at the Zone. She also manages content partners, such as the Zone’s newest partner Morgan Stanley, who is teaming up with them to bring financial wellness tools and educational resources to student-athletes.
While tackling the issue of underrepresentation in business is not a one-woman job, Reid does spend her time at work creating safe spaces. “At the Zone, we truly care about the holistic wellbeing of young people. At an alarming rate, athletes are experiencing mental issues,” explains Reid. “Our app is designed as a resource to provide a community and educate student-athletes in a way that helps them feel seen, heard, and understood.”
Athletes are afraid to talk about their mental health due to playing time repercussions or judgment. Reid uses her expertise to generate a nurturing environment—much like the one she found in Kogod—for athletes across the country to cope and overcome difficulties.
My dream has always been to create safe spaces for people to be authentically themselves and to have the tools and resources to survive in a world that does not prioritize wellness and rest."
The Zone’s app has an aggregate view that keeps team members’ responses anonymous but allows staff and coaches to keep a pulse on the team’s overall well-being. “We know that it’s not just one thing contributing to someone’s mental health. It’s a combination of many life factors,” says Reid. “Our mission is to prepare student-athletes for now and the future.”
Morgan Stanley’s role in collaborating with the Zone is to share financial resources, host informative financial Zoom sessions with athletes, and equip students to be fiscally responsible throughout their lives. “Our goal with the partnership is to build a general framework and understanding of core financial concepts and tell stories about other young adults, their financial journey, and what they have learned along the way,” explains Reid.
The party is just getting started—we have so many enhancements in the roadmap now that we have a solid minimum viable product in the hands of the students."
Reid and her colleagues continue to collect data and meet with students to learn more about their wants and needs for the app.
Reid recently earned the additional title of cofounder of the Zone’s app! So, while lack of representation may always be on her mind—like many other women in business—she is becoming a much-needed example of a successful and educated woman in her field as she creates a platform for young adults to feel less alone and check in on how their mental health affects their own personal and professional goals.