What am I doing with my life?
Like many people, Robin Fish found herself ruminating on this question in her late twenties. She had been a cocktail waitress in Las Vegas for several years, and though she enjoyed her job and was making a comfortable living, she had always envisioned herself as a businessperson.
Throughout her life, Robin has been her own biggest advocate, in a way that is inspiring to behold. She grew up in Alaska with parents who ran a local chain of grocery stores. “He was crazy and worked all the time,” she says of her dad, “and I think his good work ethic rubbed off on me.” When she was finishing high school, she had to convince her parents, who wanted her to take over the family business, to let her go to college. She started at a school in Alaska, and then was able to convince them to let her transfer to UNLV in Las Vegas, where she earned a degree in Economics.
A few years later, she had weathered the financial crisis as a cocktail waitress, and was doing well, but it wasn’t what she wanted to do long-term. She decided to take things into her own hands again, and went back to UNLV for grad school, getting a dual Masters degree—an MBA plus a Masters in Science for Management Information Systems. The tech side was a new challenge for her, but she saw the value in having that type of degree, and worked hard to make it happen.
Next, she moved to San Francisco and threw herself into the hyper-competitive environment of Silicon Valley. “San Francisco was a challenge. I thought that getting through school was going to be the challenge, but it was not. Once I got out to SF, I was competing with all these Harvard MBAs for SDR jobs at tech companies. I really had to step up my game and learn to sell myself.”
Being a woman looking for sales positions in that kind of environment without a ton of relevant experience was hard. “I think a lot of women struggle with having the confidence to talk about their own accomplishments and get a company to see their value and how it applies,” she says. After going on what felt like a thousand interviews, she was able to hone that skill. “I got to the point where it didn’t matter what anybody thought about me—I just needed to go in there and do my best. It also helped me as a salesperson, because if you can sell yourself, selling anything else gets a lot easier."
After a series of sales positions at tech startups and a move to New York, UiPath came onto her radar. As she went through the interview process, she was struck by the company’s culture. “That’s the one thing about UiPath that stands out to me. The interview process was centered around having a conversation with someone and getting to know them. I never felt like my interviewers were waiting for me to mess up—it was incredible how everyone was so happy and intelligent and humble. I’m still impressed by that.”
Since she’s worked at UiPath, Robin has found ample opportunities to continue to grow and challenge herself. “If you jump in and you show that you’re excited about work, the sky’s the limit,” she says. “People here are very supportive of your growth.”