When asked if she has a female mentor, Miranda said she has always looked up to her mother as a mentor and role model. “She has been an endless source of strength and knowledge and has encouraged me all along the way”. As a result, Miranda too has sought out many female-led initiatives and networking groups. At home in London, her favourite is Blooming Founders– a company that is building a scalable support infrastructure designed to give female founders a competitive edge in growing their businesses. Miranda appreciates the fact that the company has a network of over 2500 founders, freelancers, advisors, and investors and all their offerings are female-focused, but not female-only. Miranda is also a member of Women In Immersive Tech, Develop HER UK, Women of Wearables, Women in 3D Printing and many others. She would love to be a mentor someday.
As for now, she advises women who are aiming to set up their own companies and create equal opportunities to look at the culture of the bigger players: For example, IBM currently pairs top leaders (often male) with female mentors who have been identified as future leaders. The mentor/mentee meet regularly, each learning from the other, it’s informal, and helps break down some of the unconscious bias while creating visibility for female talent. Again, Deloitte does something similar, making diversity and gender equality an aspect of training. The company matches senior leaders (mostly male) to rising female talent for one to two years. They measure the results of the coaching efforts and results are then directly tied to the coach’s performance review and compensation. While for those working in an existing SME – authority comes with being an authority. Miranda, therefore, highlights that women can achieve a more prominent role by ‘creating a strong network’ to support themselves. “The key to making your way through the ‘leadership transition’ is the arduous (but worthwhile) task of networking,” emphasizes Miranda. “Creating a network of contacts who will provide support, feedback, insight, resources, and information is the best way of establishing yourself as an authority in your space. Seeking out kindred spirits outside your organization through associations, groups, clubs, communities, or better yet – starting your own, will help women gain new perspectives that will allow them to advance in their careers. These contacts provide important referrals, information, and, often, developmental support such as coaching and mentoring that will help you get a more prominent role in your organization. So start posting, partnering, throwing events, and getting your name out there!”
When Miranda is not changing others lives, she is a huge fan of meditation. She practices two different types of meditation each week. She is also helping to expand the Adaptive Yoga Network (an organization that teaches yoga to disabled people) in the UK. She spends most of her time studying the field of assistive technology in gaming, ranging from modified joypads to eye-control, to allow paralyzed and disabled people to play video games. She loves to read voraciously and recently completed reading Ashlee Vance’s biography of Elon Musk. She has also just started horse-riding lessons at the Wormwood Scrubs Pony Center. When asked to choose one person to have dinner with (living or dead) she says it would be Hedy Lamarr. “I’d ask her who the hottest man in Hollywood was in the ’40s when she was a famed beauty on the silver screen and I’d also ask how she came up with her invention of the “spread spectrum” – the technology that formed the technical backbone that makes cellular phones, fax machines and other wireless operations possible!” says Miranda.
Soon, Miranda hopes to create an AR / VR experience that will help trick the brain into feeling NO pain, through the embodiment of avatars. “The technology isn’t quite there yet but it is coming. It is based on mirror visual feedback and it is a technique I use every day to get me from A to B. My end game is to create a telehealth platform with a library of digital therapeutics that connects clinicians to patients helping people in pain, like me, have an easier time,” concludes Miranda. “Life is hard enough!”