Mari is 17 years old and CEO!
Mari Overby is currently the CEO of Compello. 17-year-old Mari from Svelvik, Norway, is to take over the position of CEO of the software company Compello for one day as part of Plan International’s campaign #girlstakeover. We took the opportunity to ask Mari a few questions about her thoughts of the future for both herself and women in general.
Who is Mari?
Mari is a 17-year-old active athlete studying in a sports program in high school.
What do you want to do when you “grow up”?
To be honest I haven’t made up my mind yet. I do know that I would like to see the world, maybe study abroad. I hope that I will get the chance to work doing something enjoyable and meaningful, something that makes a difference. I’m not planning to waste my time anyway 😉
You are young and you have the whole working life in front of you – do you and your girlfriends discuss girls’ rights, challenges and equality in working life?
No, we don’t. It’s obvious to us that we can do the same things that guys can do.
Why did Compello choose to participate in the #girlstakeover campaign?
«Compello wants to make a difference. In order to do that we need to work systematically. We have been working proactively with diversity since 2012, which has been a wonderful journey because it has given so many positive results.
We are proud to have one of the IT industry’s highest proportion of women employees in Norway: 40 % versus the 28 % industry average. This has been achieved through a number of initiatives; #girlstakeover is one example of this. In addition to participating in different campaigns, we work a lot with the way we recruit and how we communicate both internally and externally.
«We currently have women in all departments of our company, in the top and middle management as well as in the boardroom. Diversity is important for prosperity, but perhaps even more important for value creation», says Camilla Bakjord, CMO at Compello.
For the occasion of Plan International’s #girlstakeover campaign Torgeir Letting, CEO of Compello, is handing over his role to 17-year-old Mari Overby. Torgeir believes this campaign fits well into Compello’s business culture, which has Playful as one of its values. «I believe first and foremost that this is a good learning for all parts, both for us with experience from working life and forfor Mari who gets to try out the CEO role for a day» he says, appreciating that this is a little outside the box.
«A good manager is a good manager regardless of gender. We are excited to help shed light on women’s rights through the campaign #girlstakeover», adds Torgeir Letting.
Compello has supported Plan International for many years
Compello has supported Plan International and the job they do for women and children’s rights for a long time. «At Compello we focus on diversity and want to be socially responsible at the same time. With this campaign we can help to make a difference together with Plan International» says Camilla Bakjord.
«We are incredibly proud that Compello supports this initiative. Through these girlstakeovers, where girls are the boss for one day, the company shows support for important topics of justice and equality in the world» says Kari Helene Partapuoli, Director of Plan International Norway.
In connection with the International Day of the Girl on October 11, Plan International is conducting an annual campaign where girls take over leading positions in different businesses. «Girls Takeover» is a global action that takes place in many parts of the world celebrating the power of girls and focusing on girls’ rights.
Globally women are underrepresented in management positions. Less than 5 percent are managers in the world’s 500 largest company. Only 23 percent of the parliamentarians around the world are women, only 18 percent of government ministers are women. In 2/3 of the world, women are underrepresented in using the Internet, and 62 million girls do not attend primary school.