A leader plays a vital role in every industry; employees look up to them and get motivated. Being a leader comes with many responsibilities, including effective skills, trust, passion, and the ability to always focus on the people.
In corporate society, we have always seen leadership roles dominated by men. Additionally, no matter the responsibilities of a position, the false narrative that a man will always succeed to a higher level was prevalent.
Women in leadership were disrupting the global business arena even while attaining varied responsibilities carried on their shoulders and attaining them on a regular basis. By breaking all the barriers and continuing to push the envelope, Beth Gaines, one of the most admired Leaders in Business, is standing out.
Beth Gaines is currently working as a Head of IP Solutions – Americas Dennemeyer & Co., LLC, where she leverages her expertise and experience to play a major part in the recruitment and development of her team and colleagues. Since her time with Dennemeyer, she has become a role model to all, especially to the women of Dennemeyer who are just starting their careers. Sharing her knowledge and lessons learned from over 20 years of experience, she has guided her team in achieving or excelling in their professional goals.
As a leader, she prioritizes listening to her team and colleagues. She believes that an effective leader is one who has the ability to listen and understand others. She states that to be successful in the IP industry, attention to detail is very important, as IP laws keep changing frequently.
So, let’s learn her story of success:
Becoming a woman in leadership never comes easy. It comes along with a lot of personal and professional responsibilities simultaneously. Similar was the experience of Beth Gaines; at the age of 22, she made the most significant job transition by joining the US Navy, which provided her with the foundation for becoming an effective leader. During that time, Beth was multitasking her responsibilities by working full-time, pursuing her education, and raising a child. Nevertheless, by successfully utilizing her Naval Leadership training, Beth graduated in 2001.
As a paralegal, Beth shifted from general practice to pharmaceutical Intellectual Property, where she also completed her MBA in International Business and quickly accepted her first leadership role at a small IP services vendor. After three years in the role, Beth was recruited by a competitor and relocated to Washington, DC, along with her family. This finally led her to Americas Dennemeyer & Co., LLC, where she began as a consultant before being hired full-time as the Head of IP Solutions.
Dennemeyer’s Mission & Vision
Dennemeyer is a full-service IP solutions provider, managing over three million IP rights for over 8,000 customers globally through more than 20 offices. Dennemeyer has provided high-quality services for the protection and maintenance of intellectual property rights since 1962. They are dedicated to becoming the first-choice partner for customers worldwide because they believe their customers deserve the greatest representation wherever and whenever they need to protect and successfully manage their intellectual property portfolio.
Fundamentals of Effective Leader
An Effective Leader focuses on four core fundamentals:
Self-Awareness – Beth always wanted to be an effective leader, and for that, she mentioned that “I consistently ask my team for feedback on how I can do better because it is important to seek constructive criticism and not be afraid of it.”
Effective Listening Skills – “Intelligence speaks; wisdom listens,” Beth’s previous mentor once told her, and this truly defines a great leader. As a leader, Beth has become an effective listener by paying close attention to what is being said and listening intently for understanding before responding.
Create a common vision to define the strategy – When embarking on a change, decision, or new direction, Beth feels it is vital for a leader to incorporate and deeply evaluate diverse points of view. Obtaining a wide range of perspectives is essential when leading a company in a new direction.
Influence – Being influenced is fundamental to effective leadership. Beth says, “Being comfortable persuading, promoting, and delegating is essential. At the end of the day, you cannot accomplish anything without being able to influence the people around you, no matter their level within the organization.”
Words of Expert
20+ years in the IP industry made Beth an invaluable member of the Dennemeyer leadership team. Weekly, monthly, and annual changes occur in intellectual property law on a global scale. Dennemeyer renews patents, trademarks, and designs in approximately 250 countries around the world, which can be difficult to keep up with. As a result, as country laws change and new laws are passed, paying close attention to detail is critical. Everyone’s success must draw on their skills and expertise in this niche industry.
Gender Diversity at Dennemeyer
A diversified workspace and leadership team are highly valued. Unfortunately, women continue to be underrepresented in positions of leadership in IP. At Dennmeyer, women make up over 60% of the global workforce, and 70% of the US management team are women. Dennemeyer has the potential to change as businesses today still only promote only 87 women for every 100 men. Beth claims that “I am committed to mentoring young women and sharing how I have overcome challenges in my career.” Furthermore, she urges that every individual must recognize the persistent presence of the proverbial glass ceiling. The more awareness, the lesser the barriers to success.
Values at Dennemeyer
Dennemeyer’s leadership values of trust, respect, entrepreneurship, ownership, integrity and high-quality service empower its people. Dennemeyer leadership is urged to set a good example and empower their staff to work together as a cohesive unit committed to service excellence in all parts of IP as #OneDennemeyer.
Transformation in IP Management and Legal Sector
Implementing automation tools and technologies plays a key role in enabling customers to make decisions on demand. With these modifications, customers have quick access and self-service management options for their IP, as well as effective, single-click communication with Dennemeyer.
Dennemeyer has already made significant progress in this area with the online Portfolio Management App, but converting its platform to a mobile app would be crucial to keeping clients interested.
Beth Gaines’s career objectives are similar to those of the majority of people. She hopes to grow in her current position and eventually move to a more senior position within Dennemeyer.
Advise to Aspirers
Beth advises that career growth doesn’t come easy, so discouragement is not the answer. Remember that it is substantially more difficult for a woman to advance, so if you don’t succeed the first time, try again. Set goals for yourself and communicate them with your management. Request their feedback and input. Mid-year and yearly reviews are excellent opportunities to hold this discussion, but they are not the only opportunities to do so. Because not everyone aspires to be a leader, don’t expect your boss to be aware that this is your goal. Furthermore, keep in mind you don’t need to be in a leadership role to lead.. Volunteer to be the project leader with several contributors to develop expertise. Finally, even if you are not in a position of leadership, set a good example and always always be your own advocate.