Unboxing Logistics: An EasyPost Podcast

Empowering Women in Logistics With Anna Podolskaya From EasyPost - Ep. 16

December 13, 2023 | 46:45

In This Episode

According to Gartner, women make up just 39% of the logistics industry. At the executive level, that number drops to 21%. In this episode, Lori talks with Anna Podolskaya, product manager at EasyPost, about the value women bring to logistics and technology roles, how they can advance their careers, and why diversity matters.

Challenges Anna has faced in the logistics industry

In the beginning of Anna’s career, people often assumed she was a secretary or executive assistant. While she recognizes the value in those roles, she also emphasizes the importance of recognizing women as subject matter experts: “They're like, can we ask someone technical? And I'm like, I am technical.”

Tips for advancing your career

Wondering how to jumpstart your career in a male-dominated field? Anna shares some of her most impactful activities:

  • Network. Connecting with others in the industry (both women and men) can help you envision and achieve your ideal career path.
  • Volunteer. Find local organizations where you can share your knowledge, and look for chances to mentor others.
  • Attend conferences. Attend free or paid conferences to network and learn. 

How can men support women in the workplace?

Lori and Anna discuss several ways men can support women in the workplace, including sharing constructive feedback and asking for feedback themselves. Anna sees the power of praise combined with questions: “Hey, you did a really great job. What would you want to do differently?”



Lori Boyer 00:00 

Welcome to Unboxing Logistics, the podcast from EasyPost where we dive into everything related to our logistics and supply chain industry. I'm Lori Boyer and I'm your host today. And I am thrilled to be joined today with one of my co-conspirators here at EasyPost, Anna Podolskaya. Did I say that right?

Anna Podolskaya 00:24 

Correct. Correct. 

Lori Boyer 00:25 

Okay. Perfect. We are going to have an awesome conversation today all around women in our field. This is a really interesting and timely topic right now, and I cannot wait. Anna has done all kinds of advocacy in this area. She's a really great example to me of of standing up and being great as a woman in this field.

And so we're going to dive into all kinds of Who? What? When? Where? Why? About that. But first, I wanted to go ahead and introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about your your role at EasyPost. 

Anna Podolskaya 00:59 

Sure. Hi, everyone. My name is Anna Podolskaya, as Lori mentioned to you, and I'm a product manager at EasyPost, and I'm responsible for all new carrier integrations we have on our platform. We have around 100 plus different carriers, and I'm absolutely enjoying working with them and providing to our shippers the best in class solutions. 

Lori Boyer 01:22

Awesome. For our very intuitive community members out there, you may have detected a little hint at an accent from Anna. She has a really cool background story.

I'm excited. She has worked in this industry across multiple countries. And so, we're going to really learn a lot from her. But, first, we like to start by putting you on the hot seat a little bit. And talking. Doing a little this and that. So, I'm going to name two things, and you tell me which you prefer.

Anna Podolskaya 01:52 

Sounds good. Let's do it. 

Lori Boyer 01:53 

Number one. Mac or PC? 

Anna Podolskaya 01:57 

Mac. Even though I was PC girl for many, many years, and I was in technical support for PC. 

Lori Boyer 02:03 

And, and so why Mac then?

Anna Podolskaya 02:05 

I think it's a much better in terms of user experience, and it's much easier. Where PC required you to be more tech savvy when Mac, it's just like easy peasy lemon squeezy, just go and start working. 

Lori Boyer 02:19 

I agree. I was PC forever and I got my first Mac at a job a few years ago and I was like, I don't even know what to do. So I do still have a PC at home, but I do work on a Mac, so I'd love to hear from you guys. What do you prefer? And why? Do you prefer a shower or a bath? 

Anna Podolskaya 02:39 

Shower. Because, as you mentioned, my accent, I didn't grow up with a bath. Yes. And I just enjoying bath as a luxury where I'm somewhere on vacation, but it's shower. Because it's efficient. I'm also very, like, a technical person. It's efficient. 

Lori Boyer 02:56 

It's efficient. I agree. Okay, would you rather eat an orange or have orange juice? 

Anna Podolskaya 03:02 

Great question. I never thought about it. Probably orange juice. Again, because it's more efficient and You don't need to peel anything. It's already there. But the trick with orange juice, you can consume a lot of orange juice and it's a lot of sugar. With the orange per se, it probably will be only one orange. 

Lori Boyer 03:23 

Yes. Yes, that's true. I love both oranges and orange juice, I had to say. So that's a hard one. 

Anna Podolskaya 03:29 

Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Oh, I love this question. I am, according to Meyer Briggs, 70 percent extrovert and 30 percent introvert, which is absolutely how it is. It's a little bit maybe shifted into more introverted percentage during the COVID. But still, I'm like, hard extrovert. 

Lori Boyer 03:50 

Yes, yes, I can see that. You're so fun to be around. I'm right on the border. I tend to be about 60 percent extrovert 40 percent introvert, which all my friends and coworkers are always surprised. They think I'm more of an extrovert, but I'm not always. Okay, would you rather do board games or video games? 

Anna Podolskaya 04:07 

Board games, absolutely. I'm a big fan of board games. 

Lori Boyer 04:10 

Do you have any faves? 

Anna Podolskaya 04:11 

I'm a big fan of Monopoly, to be honest. Everything related to, like, exchanging money, buying. I love it. I love it. And actually, we just recently played with colleagues UNA. So much fun, you know? So much fun. 

Lori Boyer 04:24 

I feel like you would win. I feel like you'd beat me. 

Anna Podolskaya 04:28 

In UNA, I won one of the rounds, and then, like, I lost a few of them. But again, because I'm calculating a lot of stuff, that's helping a lot. 

Lori Boyer 04:38

Are you competitive? Do you like to win? 

Anna Podolskaya 04:41 

I am competitive, but I can control it, and I can step back, because it's, being competitive taking a lot of energy, to be honest. Mental and physical energy. 

Lori Boyer 04:50 

Yes, yes. Okay, if you were gonna go on vacation, would you rather be the person who plans it all, or would you rather go with someone else and they plan it all and you just go along for the ride? 

Anna Podolskaya 05:03 

90 percent of the time, I'm the one who is planning everything. But I also sometimes like to go on vacation where I just only bought ticket booked the hotel and that's it. And we'll figure out as we go. Because I mentioned I'm a product manager, have very tight schedule. I'm planning a lot of things. Sometimes you just wanna go with the flow. 

Lori Boyer 05:24 


Anna Podolskaya 05:25 

But most of the time I will be the one who's planning. 

Lori Boyer 05:27 

I was gonna say, as a product manager, I'm sure you're so good at planning things. And that's just in your day to day life. My mom used to sometimes though, she worked on a very rigid schedule and was very organized. But sometimes we'd go on vacation and she'd say, I just want to put all the watches away. I don't want to know what time it is. I just want to relax. So I totally get that.

All right. Do you prefer money or brains? Intelligence. 

Anna Podolskaya 05:54 

I think intelligence always bring you money. If you know how to use your brain, by the end of the day, it will bring you money. 

Lori Boyer 06:02 

And if you have money and no brains, then you'll probably lose your money. 

Anna Podolskaya 06:06 

Exactly. And pretty quickly. 

Lori Boyer 06:08

Yeah. Okay, would you prefer a warm, cozy blanket or a cup of hot chocolate when it's chilly out?

Anna Podolskaya 06:16

Warm cozy blanket no hot chocolate. Like moving to United States taught me that there is a lot of sugar in like, everywhere. I keep laughing that I'm start breathing and already gaining extra pounds. 

Lori Boyer 06:27

I know, it's so true. We have, we have sugar. I think it's in our air. We just breathe it in. 

Anna Podolskaya 06:34 

And if you haven't grow up here, you are not like that adjusted and it's okay, like it's no judgment. It's just like you need to get used to and understand how to read labels and everything. Talking about labels, that was a hint, hint that we're working with labels. 

Lori Boyer 06:52 

That is so true. I, you, smooth way to, to bring in the labels of using shipping. Okay, final question. Would people say you're more serious or more silly?

Anna Podolskaya 07:05 

Hmm. Serious or silly? Depends on situation. I think like if we're at work, I'm most of the time serious. If we're with you outside of the work, I probably will be silly serious. 

Lori Boyer 07:20 

Silly serious.

Anna Podolskaya 07:21 

I know where to like make the switch between silly, silliness and being serious. And I also sometimes feel where people need a little bit of injection of the joke.

Lori Boyer 07:32 


Anna Podolskaya 07:33 

To like start being like rational, but at the same time, I totally understand emotional part of like talking with the partners at work, talking with people outside of the work. And we are in logistics and technology industry where you need to be a subject matter expert, but at the same time, you need to feel what people want and how you can help them.

Lori Boyer 07:56 

Has that been hard at all for you as you've had to change cultures? I know you've worked in different places, to detect, you know, that, that kind of emotional connection. Has that been a challenge? 

Anna Podolskaya 08:07 

That's a really great question. The two things happen. First, I studied here in international business school in the United States, which helped me a lot with adjustment.

Second, I remember my first weekend at EasyPost during the lunch break in San Francisco office where all of my colleagues talking about funny shows they're watching, and I have no idea what they're talking about. Because I don't have a similar cultural background. And at that time I realized, okay, I need to speed up, I need to understand what's the foundation people have, like some movies or TV shows to like catch up.

In general, psychology of the people around the world is not different. The question in terms of like, which movies you grew up, which books you grew up. Sometimes you can joke about advertising you saw in 90s. I will not understand this because I haven't seen it, but I can like quickly Google it. And I'm like, okay, now I know what we're talking about.

It was adjustment, but it's all about the effort. Like, and I really put the effort that I want to make the same funny jokes about Seinfeld episodes, you know, I want to understand the joke about this USPS guy in Seinfeld, which we're talking at work all the time now. And I'm like fully proficient. 

Lori Boyer 09:27 

I love that though, because it really is true. In any circumstance, at work, anytime that you're getting into a new culture, even if it's a work culture, you have to kind of figure out where you stand and, and do put it in the work. Like you said, that's awesome. So today we are going to talk about the role of women in logistics and technology. Interesting.

I pulled up some stats. Let me find it. As of last year according to Gartner, in the logistics industry, there are just, just 38% of, or 39% of the industry's workforce are female. When you move up into executives that's even smaller, just 21%. And one of the bigger concerns are that these numbers are actually down.

So women are not in the industry as much as they even were a few years ago. And yet there's a lot of advantage. So if you're working out there, if you're in ecommerce, if you're at a 3PL, if you're at a carrier, there are so many advantages to having that diversity and to having that opinion you know, different insights.

And, and understanding more. And so we're going to talk a little bit today about the importance of being able to be inclusive to women. If you are a woman, how you can, you know, stand out, how you can fit in as you talked about a little bit. And it's going to be really great, but I want to start because Anna has a really interesting story and background. So let's, before we get fully into our topic, can you tell us a little bit about your journey to the United States? Your background in logistics and, you know, kind of how you ended up here? 

Anna Podolskaya 11:09 

Sure. Absolutely. Absolutely. I grew up in Moscow in Russia, and I, from the beginning, really understood that I like to break those stereotypes about women in STEM, Statistics, Technology, Economics, and Mathematics.

I finished mathematical school, and I finished my undergrad and master's in computer science. It always was, like, very obvious there's not enough girls and, like, women in all of those universities. But I started my journey, like, in logistics and technology at DHL Moscow. It's a European branch of DHL.

Lori Boyer 11:43 

Shout out to our DHL people out there! So DHL Moscow here. 

Anna Podolskaya 11:49

Yes, yes, yes, yes. I recently attended the PARCEL forum where I met our partners from DHL and some people from that office. That was fascinating. 

Lori Boyer 11:57 

Awesome. So great. 

Anna Podolskaya 11:58

To see, yeah. And I, after Moscow office, I moved to Germany where I work as a technical project manager in one of the huge media companies, one of the fortune 500 companies. And I was lucky enough to work in multiple regions in Europe and Sweden, Finland, United Kingdom, Netherlands, which also helped me to understand like different backgrounds and like different customers.

And as you mentioned, good products, those products where you have diverse type of people working on this product. Because the way how I, you or someone else seeing the product, like some buttons, usability could be so different. And we do not realize this until we put different people in the room.

That's why it's important to have different cultural background, different genders to create a good product. And one of the things in my journey, I came to United States when I moved from Europe and I decided that I want to pursue my dream, get my MBA United States. I also won scholarship for business analytics here.

And at that time I found a job at EasyPost. I started in a technical program manager role, which was fundamental for EasyPost to go over processes we have. We start growing, we start scaling, and that's what the program management team was responsible for. And then after that, I switched to the product where we are answering the main questions, what we're doing and why we're doing. What is interesting for our clients?

What is important for our company? What's our strategy? And I think that's perfect in terms of like my background with computer science and my background with the business degree I have. And I'm really thankful and I'm noticing how it's different in Europe and in the United States in terms of women in logistics and in technology.

Lori Boyer 13:57

Okay, that's a great segue to what I was just wondering about. What are some of the differences you've seen? Even in general in the logistics industry, but also when it comes to women between some of the different places you've lived? 

Anna Podolskaya 14:10 

You know, surprisingly, I never thought that there is such a huge gap in the United States. Because growing up in Eastern Europe, we have so many women engineers, so many women doctors.

My mom is a doctor. And we have lawyers, we have judges. And they're all equal when. Until the moment coming to the maternity leave, they're all equal. After maternity leave, there's some changes, like dramatic changes. And like, that's another topic. 

Lori Boyer 14:41 

Another day, another day. 

Anna Podolskaya 14:45 

Yeah, about this. And then I came to United States and we will touch base with you a little bit later. I came to one of the schools in San Francisco where I spoke with the girls in the fifth grade and they were asking me questions about STEM, if it's okay to be a part of like STEM education. And I'm like, I even don't know how this question come to you because then I'm like, why it's not okay? Because it's not popular.

And I think it's changing here a lot. I'm really proud. I'm talking about logistic industry. As I mentioned, I attended PARCEL Forum for last three years and they start doing a woman and logistic branch where you can see how many women attending this event. That's amazing. And also this year I became a part of woman and logistics and delivery service organization which called Wilds. I love the name. Yeah, they're supporting a lot of initiatives for workers in logistics and delivery, which is great. I see there is a lot of push. Our company helping a lot to promote diversity and to hire more engineers, hire more C-level people, middle management. It's absolutely changing. Like people see the needs In this sector that we need to have different voices. 

Lori Boyer 16:03 

Yes, it is great. And I think sometimes we just don't always know the easiest way to go about it. And that's where we're going to talk a little bit more about today is how do we make sure that we are actively looking for those opportunities?

I love some of that. Can you name the organizations again that people can be? So if you are a woman in logistics, what were some of those organizations you just named? 

Anna Podolskaya 16:23

One of the organization called Wilds, Women in Logistics and Delivery Services. They're based in Washington, D.C. This one is great. I'm personally also part of Women in Technology and Girls Who Code and Girls Geek.

I'm like part of a lot of organization in San Francisco to support women in technology, but there is not that many for women in logistics. Like technology is rising and people are aware. Logistics, I think they're still catching up. 

Lori Boyer 16:52 

Yeah, I think you're right. In logistics, we all know we're a little slow in this industry of adopting a lot of things. So we're a little slower with adopting technology, we're a little slower with making change. And that's fine, but that means there's lots of opportunities for us to improve and to get even better.

So how did you get passionate about logistics or what is your favorite part? Let's say this instead. What is your favorite part about logistics? What gets you most excited about this industry? 

Anna Podolskaya 17:19

I think I really like that this down to earth industry, it's like providing real value. And everyone needs something to be ordered and delivered, right? And on top of like a consumer needs and we saw huge growth during the Covid, it's also like helping so many people. Like we have one of the customers who are delivering medical needs. Like that's that's the part of like then in the United States delivery and shopping and logistics.

It's such a big part of the economy. And I really love to be part of something what is making difference every day. 

Lori Boyer 17:56 

Yeah. Oh, I love that. It is not very often that you do work in an industry that touches really every single person. And I get excited, for those of you who are carriers, every time I see a truck or every time I'm like, Oh, there's one of our people, you know, I'm pretty nerdy that way. It is, it's really exciting to be involved in that. 

Anna Podolskaya 18:16 

I even, by the way, talking about trucks, I even checking, and guys, check it out as well, every time in my mail room, in my building, boxes are coming, I'm pretty often checking which labels they have, and if there's an EasyPost label, and I'm so excited, and I'm like, oh my god, it's EasyPost label!

I know! I know! Sometimes, like in the earlier days, we were posting even in the Slack channel without like a PI, without personal data. Like, Hey, look in my building, I got EasyPost label. 

Lori Boyer 18:43

I went, recently I was visiting one of our customers and we were in their warehouse. And they had, they'd had a little hiccup and were waiting for a carrier, we won't name them, who was a little behind. But they had thousands of packages, all with the EasyPost. Like, so exciting. 

Anna Podolskaya 19:01 

Like, especially when you are building it, and like some of the products are like mine, like some of the carriers, yeah, and without naming them, I see this carrier, I see this label, and I'm like, this is part of me and my team who work in this project.

Lori Boyer 19:16 

I love it. That's so exciting. And that is fun for all of us in the industry every time we see something that we know we're related to. Okay, so talking about women though, like, what have you experienced in terms of any stereotypes in the industry towards women? Have you had any biases or anything you want to share in that way?

Anna Podolskaya 19:36 

Like in general, I think what I noticed in the beginning of my career, a lot of people, especially when you're talking on the phone, they thought that you are secretary or executive assistant. Again, that's super valuable jobs. Like no question asked. It's about that they're calling you about some technical questions and they're like, oh, can we ask someone like technical and I'm like, I am technical.

Then usually in the same conversation, people assume that certain people are guys, like, I don't know, CEO of the company. That's a chief operation officer. That's another bias. 

Lori Boyer 20:14 


Anna Podolskaya 20:14 

You can see that people are not inclusive. But when you're telling them like, Oh no, this person like our VP of product is woman that we have a woman as VP of product. That's interesting. But I see that people start being more conscious about this and more careful for sure. 

Lori Boyer 20:32

What, what kind of unique traits do you think women have that help in logistics and technology? What, what are some of the aspects of many women out there that really can help? 

Anna Podolskaya 20:43 

Great question. I think being multitaskers, right? Because we are able, that's a part of our nature. We're able to handle multiple things at the same time, and that's a part of logistics. Also, I think about optimization of routes or optimization of processes, right? This is also important in logistics. And I think as a woman you like, okay, I need to do this as much as possible because I have five other things.

I recently met a partner in Ascendia, Katie Vogt. She's a director of IT and she's with the company for last, the 10 I think years and I see how another quality that she build the team from the scratch. That's another thing that the woman has this quality of like building something in like really good environment.

And I think for logistics, and you mentioned our industry a little bit old fashioned, and it's not bad. That's why we have easy pose because we are innovative. We're delivering best in class solutions. And same for those carriers who are able to build from the scratch some technology to be a better.

There's so much competition. There's a lot of regional carriers who wanna compete with the big boys. With our big carriers, right? National carriers. What they need to do, they need to invest into the technology and they should be someone who build those technology in the company. 

Lori Boyer 22:12

Yeah, and being innovative that way, I mean, it's such an opportunity for those of you who are trying to compete maybe with the really large carriers or with other really large organizations or, or if you're ecommerce, if you're trying to compete with the giant retailers of the world it is a real advantage when you're slightly smaller that you can innovate quickly, that you can get more diversity in terms of opinions and thoughts, and you don't get mired down in kind of that slow all of the, the red tape you have to go through in those big organizations. And I think that's somewhere, like you said, that you can take advantage of diverse opinions really well.

Anna Podolskaya 22:49 


Lori Boyer 22:50 

I would love to dive into some of the real opportunities that there are for us to. First, let's start talking as a woman. So if you are a woman, if you're interested in coming into the logistics industry, if you're working in it now, and maybe you are in a role that you don't want to be in or something like that what are some of the things that you've done that you've seen have been helpful?

I'd love to start by talking about networking. Mentorship that kind of things. How, how, what kind of role does that play? How does that help? 

Anna Podolskaya 23:20 

Oh, I think networking is a great resource for you to understand what your next role could be or should be by connecting with people who already in the role you would like to be and asking them for like sharing their background, sharing their story.

This will help to shape your vision. If you like to go there, what you like, like, for example, we have very strong here, customer success team and a lot of people in this team like we have woman there, and I see that they could be some of them could be a great mentors for other people because not a lot of people know about customer success. And customer success is crucial part of the business to keep your customers. And when I say customers, I mean shippers or carriers, to keep them happy with offering and with with our services.

Networking is absolutely great opportunity. Like when I say networking, it could be offline networking events. Like again, I am from San Francisco. We have a lot of networking events, a lot of events for women in technology, not specifically in logistics. Like, I think logistics more in Chicago D.C. This is like more areas where a lot of warehouses and a lot of companies. Also, another thing is volunteering, like volunteering where you are a volunteer and volunteering where you are helping and mentoring people. That's also amazing. It's shaping your view, it's shaping which questions people are asking. And you're connecting. Like me living for seven years, I have a lot of genuine connection. 

Where I can ask questions like about my professional development, professional development and logistics. Coming to those conferences, that's another way. It's and sometimes passes to those conference are for free which is great, right? That not everything based on the amount of money you pay for ticket. Coming to those conference and talking with woman who in the industry, incredible. Like one of the panel, again I've been on PARCEL Forum recently, one of the panel was with the multiple regional carriers like and half of the people were men half of the people were woman.

Oh my god, it's so interesting to hear different perspective. And I came to like, that's one of our partners. I came and I said like, thank you so much. It was great. Like how you feel. She's like, Oh, it's changing so much in recent years. I can see the difference. 

Lori Boyer 25:47 

Yes. And I think in our industry, networking is really important.

Relationship building, again, we are a little old fashioned. And those one on one relationships, those group relationships, actually reaching out and meeting people can make a huge difference. And I love that you pointed out, because there's kind of two things. We've got networking, that's you going out and trying to meet people and creating this, this network of community.

But we also have mentoring. Where if you are in one of those roles, you and I both are, and so making me think I should be mentoring somebody. Going out and finding people who maybe are interested and wanting to create that connection and bring you in. I also think as a mentor, you don't have to be a woman.

So if you're a male engineer, and there is somebody else who's, you know, a female wanting to get into that field. Absolutely show them the ropes, teach them different ways and, and you can have great opportunities. 

Anna Podolskaya 26:49 

Just to add a little bit more about this, a lot of people asking, well, how I, could be a mentor.

I always recommend that, especially in the United States, everyone like to put themselves in the groups, right? And like, just think about your background. Like, for example, your high school, your alma mater, your college, that's the group like college students absolutely would love to hear help. I'm still like talking in my university in the United States about like my journey.

Then like I'm participating in San Francisco local school district communities, which are helping kids to define their roles. Or because of my background, I'm participating in a lot of Eastern European groups where I'm sharing to women immigrants, how to like, how to get to here. You asked me a great question about cultural code.

This is very important. How to, like, shape your resume, how to shape your vision. This is also all important. How to properly speak to the people you would like to work with. 

Lori Boyer 27:52 

Okay, you're totally inspiring me. I feel guilty. I do. There is so much more I could be doing. There's so much more all of us could be doing.

I totally am going to reach out. My school is not nearby, but there's other schools near where I live, other universities, and I can totally go and find those students. So anyway, totally inspiring me. I feel just like there's so many opportunities. So let's talk about career advancement. What kind of strategies have you found work?

This is an area again, especially we talked about the fact that as we move higher and higher, the number of executive women in the industry is really small. Advice for women wanting to go up, advance their career. 

Anna Podolskaya 28:40

That's a question which I also continue figuring out for myself. I think there is a balance to find the way how you talk with people, especially in our industry, right?

Like we are talking a lot with the people on the East Coast, which style is a little bit different than on the West Coast. I need to wear like a different hat when I'm talking with them. I also feel that the another strategy for me to show that I'm subject matter expert. Where people asking questions I even know answer or I like very firm in terms of okay I need to research more to come back to you.

Like I'm not ashamed to say that I don't know something That's my strategy to show that you're subject matter expert or you're coming back and you're following up with the answer. That I think that's a good one. 

I am sometimes like even you, I was watching you talking with people the way how you are pursuing people, the way how they're responding to you. Like, I like observing this kind of things. I think this is also a really good strategy for you to like moving up in the ladder. And also don't be afraid to like asking for mentorship even inside the company.

Like because, hey, I want to be in the circle with you in like this middle management circle. 

Lori Boyer 30:02


Anna Podolskaya 30:02 

How you came here. Like share with me. 

Lori Boyer 30:05


Anna Podolskaya 30:05 

People love to talk about their background. 

Lori Boyer 30:08

Okay. I heard so many good things here. I'm gonna summarize some of them 'cause they were really, really good. I don't want you guys to miss these points.

Number one you said, learn. Be an expert. Get out there and don't expect just to move in your career without actually putting in the work. That's absolutely true. Completely. There's so much you can learn on your own. There's so much you can research. There are tons of resources out there. So don't leave that as an excuse.

Number two, know your audience. So you said, you know, you may be talking differently to somebody on the East Coast or the West Coast. Maybe the same within your company. You may need to learn the right kind of strategies, the right kind of culture within your company. But one of the most important things that I heard you say is to make it known that you want to move up. That you reach out to that mentor in your company, that you let your boss know like, Hey, how do I go up?

And I know as I've managed people, you know, that's one of the most critical elements is that they know they have a career path. And sometimes women and men, we don't ask about it. We don't say what do I need to do to get to the next level in my career? Managers are usually, we should be if we're not, completely happy to set up a path to you, to getting that promotion, to moving on, to putting you in connection with the right people and getting you that experience.

So, fantastic. I love those insights from you, Anna. Okay, I want to talk about men. Again, a big majority of our audience, even, are probably men. Hopefully you're still here. If you are, you've hung on this whole time. Men, your role in this is just as important. And I actually want to back that up. Women, when we talk about stereotypes and we talk about biases, I want to make it very clear, we are just as guilty of those as men.

This is not like a man problem where they're, you know, saying, oh, you shouldn't be a VP. Often as women, we're doing the same thing. And we're, and we're not looking to those women and we're not trying to find those opportunities. So let's all make sure that we're trying to overcome our own biases. But men can be huge allies in this journey for women.

It is so beneficial for both men and women. You hit it just so well earlier in talking about how there are so many benefits for everyone when we get diversity. So. Men as allies, Anna, what can they do to support the journey of women or, or I guess let's start by why is that even important? Why should they even care?

Anna Podolskaya 32:47 

I think they should care, again, from the perspective of diversity, that there should be equal opportunity for everyone. And I don't want that one of the group of the people have more opportunities than another. That's what we're moving towards. Like United States, the country which is learning on their own mistakes and like getting better and better in a lot of aspects, which is amazing. I think men, a lot of men, great allies in terms of promoting woman careers and especially logistics. And I can see in our company as well. And I think what different between like approach with woman and man is sometimes to ask a little bit more deeper questions because we a lot of time operating on like emotional level as well.

Like sometimes it's plus, sometimes it's difficult. And when you see that your manager who is man asking right question, like, Hey, how you feel about this situation? Like what you have been done differently. This is a great way to express yourself because as you mentioned, even statistically wise woman applying to less of jobs when they see they're only qualify for 60%.

Men will apply when there's a 30 percent and the same at work. The same happening at work. Like we self doubt a lot. Like, Oh, are we good enough? Is it like the good way how I led this meeting. And if you have a manager who after the call will say like, Hey, you did a really great job. Like how you feel, what could be done differently?

It's bringing so much joy for me to understand this support. Or like sometimes involving in some conversation where I understand that my reaction was correct, right? Like that that was the right response. I think asking deeper questions and asking our questions, right questions, that's the one of the strategy And another one sharing as you mentioned, sharing their way, how you can be more successful.

Sometimes it's positive feedback, sometimes it's a room for improvement, but just like share it. I been taught very good strategy, which called hamburger strategy, good, bad, good. When you're saying something, you're saying like, oh, you did such a good job with this project. Great results. I think in this conversation you can do better like here and here the mistakes. But like this month I saw so much progress that was great. And that's completely different story when you are just hitting it's like okay, you did terrible at this meeting. 

Lori Boyer 35:26 


Anna Podolskaya 35:27 

And you're like, okay. I haven't done anything good at all? 

Lori Boyer 35:30 

Yes, so I love that. So as men they can, they can give feedback to females they work with. They can also ask for feedback themselves. You know, is there a way that I can support you more? What else can I do?

I think all of that is fantastic. I, I love the idea of, one of the things you mentioned earlier was that there's different perspectives that we get. And so I, as a whole, our companies really benefit when we have that diversity. I had a person that I worked with recently who shared a story where they had been working they, they had had a problem that they were dealing with. And they, and they just couldn't communicate well with somebody who was actually in a different country.

And it was a cross country border sort of thing. And it turned out it was a miscommunication that was related to the differences in their culture and their company and, rather than an actual problem. And I think that It actually can expand our mind when we realize there are other ways to do things and having those, you know, different opinions, those different views may open our eyes to, oh, that could have been a problem in this situation.

So that's all fantastic. What, what can companies as a gen, as a whole? So especially let's say that we've got a great small business out here. They're starting up they we have lots of ecommerce businesses, you know, they're trying to foster this kind of environment of inclusivity and diversity. What are some kind of things that you've seen work for companies to create that kind of culture?

Anna Podolskaya 37:05 

I really love first of all, I really love when there is like a month supporting certain culture and then those ecommerce platform this month promoting more products from the certain cultures or like from certain business owner. Like that could be any cultural background gender background.

This is a great way to put those company out there because competition is pretty strong. We have a lot of ecommerce, a lot of platforms. I see who is shipping through us and how sometimes difficult if you start your small business to get into like certain threshold of the packages per day, per month without proper support from this platforms or ecommerce companies.

And that's the number one, like doing this kind of promotion. Number two, I absolutely love partnership. That's the same what we're doing at EasyPost. Same while we're doing this podcast. Yeah, we have a great partnership with the different customers we have. And that's the way how to promote as well. I think that will boost a lot of the business for both parties, like one company who is promoting, it's showing that they're inclusive and they're trying different channels, the company which being promoted, for them it's a great opportunity. 

Lori Boyer 38:22 

That's incredible. Over the last two or three episodes, hopefully you've watched some of them. I've heard this same theme of we need to reach out to our, to others in the industry more. We need to create more. It kind of goes back to the networking, but create those relationships, get ideas from one another while we are, yes, technically competitors.

Sometimes we're also all kind of in this same battle, right? And you can learn so much. You can talk to another company and see, wow, this really works for them. They have done an amazing program with this. They've done an amazing program with that. I know that just reaching out and learning from others can make a huge difference.

So, we're, we're running a little low on time, so I just want to make sure as we close up. Any advice, first, I want to, I'm going to ask you a couple of questions. First, I want to know any advice you have for aspiring women who are wanting to get into the logistics and tech field. What you recommend to them.

And then I'm wanting to know just a few key takeaways for businesses who are watching. One or two things they can go do today to try to make sure that their company is taking advantage of the great talent that it's out there with, with women that they haven't necessarily maybe been able to, to get enough.

Anna Podolskaya 39:33 

Okay, let's unpack our first question. Advice, advice for women who want to be in logistic and technology. First of all, don't be afraid. It's like there's a lot of opportunities. There is a lot of interest. The second one attend events, free events or paid events. Depends on the budget you have.

Talk with people, ask them questions, but before even talk with people and ask questions, learn a little bit about their background. As I mentioned, people like to talk about themselves and you can take advantage of this. Asking questions as I mentioned then to get something, it's also important to give something.

That's my strategy. Like give your time as a volunteer, like help someone in your high school. school and your college you will learn a lot. All those people have also connection. Word of mouth helps a lot. If there's a someone who is also looking for a job, like there's nice to be in the group and helping each other.

There's nice to ask questions or they can help you to get into the industry. Mm. And I think last but not least, as you mentioned, man is also great allies. Asking for help is normal and it should be a part of our everyday life. It's doesn't mean that you're doing everything by yourself. 

Lori Boyer 40:54 

Oh, I love that.

Some of my best allies in my own career have been incredible men who did stand up for me and did say, Lori, you know, you can move up in this, in this field. Lori, you are an amazing worker. You can, you can do and gave me that courage. So if you're a man out there listening, please be like those. My very own boss here at EasyPost, Jeremy.

I love him. He's always been a huge support for me. Same though if you're a woman, don't be afraid. Don't, don't underestimate what you can do. Okay, so company wide. Companies out there listening. What is one thing, let's just pick one thing that they could go do as soon as they shut off this podcast.

What could they go do today to make their workplace a little bit more inclusive? 

Anna Podolskaya 41:45 

There's multiple things to be honest, yes, you're putting me in the difficult position. I really like when companies doing some events internally or externally to bring more brand awareness for a certain group of people like love.

For example, we have internally at EasyPost we're celebrating Women's Month. This year or last year I don't remember. And we brought together all like all ladies who were in the certain location to do like some tea party. That's great. This is like inspiring you it's helping you to connect like making those kind of events or those events could be external as well where you're inviting your partners and inviting people like, Hey, look at the into internal life of our company.

Such a great people who are working here. I think that's great for a company brand recognition for a company to be out there and understand that they are inclusive and it's also great for people who working in the company to see that they are being valuable and they being heard. 

Lori Boyer 42:55

Yes, I agree completely. I have worked where you know, there have been amazing events that are put on and, you know, Slack channels just for the women. And things like that, while it may seem a little, Oh, this is just silly or rah, rah, or whatever. I've heard that from people. What it does, though, is it shows that the executive leadership does care about women and does care about that role.

And that's really important. So thank you so much for being here. I wish we could keep talking. There's like 27 more questions, but can you let everyone know? We talked so much about networking. How can they network with you? How could they, can they follow you on LinkedIn? Where, where can people find you?

Anna Podolskaya 43:35 

Absolutely guys. Reach out to me on LinkedIn. Anna Podolskaya, I know I have complicated last name. 

Lori Boyer 43:42 

We'll link it. We'll link it in the description. 

Anna Podolskaya 43:44 

I also pretty active on Instagram and a few shares. I also think that we'll probably link it. Sometimes on Twitter and like all those channels are great.

Ask any questions you have. I'm always happy to be helpful and like share some advice or talking about our wonderful company. Yeah. 

Lori Boyer 44:03

Exactly. She's so good about, you know, if you are a woman in tech, if you are an immigrant who's wanting to learn what tips for settling in into a new culture, any of those kind of things, you're just the best.

So thank you so much everyone for being here. I love our community. You are all incredible and I look forward to hearing from you as always. Please let me know if there are other topics you want to hear about and you can always connect with me on LinkedIn as well. Thank you so much for being here and everybody have a great day.