Lift Off: The Rocket Software Rocketeer Profile Series – Get to Know Alice Rodman, Inclusion, Diversity & Equity, Program Manager
November 9, 2023
We talk a lot about our values of empathy, humanity, trust, and love here at Rocket Software. Those values help us keep our customers at the leading edge of their digital transformation and modernization journeys. But, that success is only possible because of the Rocketeers who are all-in on those core values, bringing their passion and industry-leading expertise to every challenge that comes their way.
Our next Rocketeer to step into the spotlight is none other than Rocket Software’s Inclusion, Diversity and Equity (RIDE) Program Manager, Alice Rodman. Among a host of other responsibilities, Alice leads the RIDE program here at Rocket Software, helping ensure we all can share in Rocket culture and engage in activities and conversations that align with our core values of empathy, humanity, trust and love. But her talents don’t just stop in the office - 2014-2019 (Pre-Covid) you could also catch her flexing her singing chops with the Rocket Band too.
Join us as we lift off and get to know Alice.
What is your role at Rocket Software and what does a typical day look like?
I am the Inclusion, Diversity and Equity (DEI) Program Manager at Rocket Software. I can safely say a typical day for me is anything but typical. I spend a lot of time meeting with various folks across departments to develop and discuss projects that support the three RIDE pillars - community, culture, and talent. Each pillar has its own set of goals and objectives, and I get to work with an incredible group of people who are passionate about getting those projects up and running. I also have the opportunity to work with Rocketeers outside of our RIDE working group to encourage conversations and explore topics around DEI.
What interested you in Rocket Software?
I’ve been at Rocket Software since 2000. What has always interested me in this organization, and kept me here for over 20 years, is the great group of people I work with and the culture. That work culture has evolved greatly and it’s been incredibly rewarding to witness and take part in that evolution—it has expanded, become more global, and brought me more opportunities to learn and grow with my peers.
How would you describe the team and work environment within your department/Rocket Software?
We are unique. I like to say that at Rocket Software, I’m surrounded by unicorns, comedians, and just truly brilliant and remarkable people. It is by no means a dull environment, but rather one that sparks creativity, innovation and creates a workplace culture of belonging. And that’s reflected in just how many of my fellow Rocketeers have been here for longer and nearly as long, as I have. This long tenure is unheard of in the software industry, and I think it helps set us apart and defines the sort of relationships Rocketeers are able to build with each other. For me, Rocket Software isn’t just a workplace, it’s become my home, and many of the people I work with have become family members to me.
What projects/aspects of your job bring you the most excitement?
One of the projects most near and dear to my heart is the Free RIDE program. I help facilitate these sessions where Rocketeers watch a short video followed by an open group discussion where we can dive into various diversity, equity, and inclusion topics. That’s where I find my energy and really come alive, hearing from our Rocketeers and engaging in those conversations.
These courageous conversations allow us all to share our insights, best practices, and experiences and discover how it feels to walk a mile in another person’s shoes. It’s a unique opportunity for all of us to exercise the Rocket Software core values.
What is one of your proudest moments during your time at Rocket Software?
Whenever I learn something new—I like to take a moment to do a little celebratory chair dance. I love to learn, so every time I achieve something it feels really rewarding. But to go a level deeper, I’m always proud of myself when I’m able to face my fear and overcome it, regardless of the challenge.
One of my favorite examples of facing fear led me to join the Rocket Band. Several years ago, I thought it would be fun to see the band perform, but after some encouragement from a coworker, I found myself joining in as a vocalist for the band at that year’s holiday party. In moments like this I tell myself, if I’m afraid to do it, then I have to do it, because if I’m successful then I’ll grow, and if I’m unsuccessful, I’ll still grow from the experience. In the end, I had the most amazing time singing with the Rocket Band and conquering that fear, which had a profound and lasting impact on my life.
Do you think Rocket Software’s core values of Empathy, Humanity, Trust and Love are unique from other companies? And how do you live by these in your day-to-day role?
Rocket Software’s core values are truly unique, and they’re the key elements to reinforcing a workplace culture of inclusion and belonging. And that’s really critical to thriving, learning, growing, and being a successful business. In terms of my day-to-day, I view every project I work on through the lens of empathy, humanity, trust, and love. I integrate our core values into everything I do by engaging in things like active listening, exercising patience, practicing growth mindset principles and kindness. I believe this is critical, not only to workplace culture, but simply being a good person.
Rocket Software inspires an environment where diversity is celebrated and respected, people are valued for their unique contributions and where each Rocketeer feels a sense of belonging. The Rocket Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity (RIDE) Program helps foster these beliefs. As the RIDE Program Manager, what do you think makes the program so important?
We strive to empower every Rocketeer to feel like they can show up as their true, authentic selves at work. RIDE serves as a platform to help us achieve a workplace culture of inclusion and belonging. Having a robust DEI program like RIDE is deeply aligned with our core values of empathy, humanity, trust, and love. But from a purely business perspective, it’s also a key to success. Businesses that build diverse workforces inclusive to historically underrepresented groups including the disabled and LGBTQIA+ communities, multiple races, ethnicities, ages and genders, promote creative problem solving, greater innovation, opens access to untapped markets and attract NextGen talent.
And with four generations of talent working at Rocket Software, that’s really a huge factor in finding success in our industry. When customers know they’re supporting a diverse and inclusive business with an active DEI initiative, it increases sales, trust, and loyalty, which in turn leads to significant business and reputation returns. Moreover, it sends a clear message that Rocket’s core values come from a place of purpose and exceeds mere intention.