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August 14, 2020 26 min
“There's so much more that unites us than separates us. And at the same time, also from a business perspective, the small businesses around the world, well, they're looking for the same thing too. … I've been on the streets of the Soweto with some amazing female entrepreneurs. And they're telling me about the biggest businesses happening in New York today. And that wouldn't have been possible that a decade ago.” Lady Nicola Mendelsohn is doing her part to make the world smaller, and more accessible. As Vice President of Facebook for Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, her mission is to help bring connectivity – and prosperity – to the developing world. So far, she is succeeding: The Daily Telegraph has called her "the most powerful woman in the British tech industry,” and Queen Elizabeth awarded her the honorific of Commander of the British Empire in 2015. “I sit on the government's Industrial Strategy Council, and that is supposed to do impartial evaluation of the UK government's progress on its own industrial strategy and its impact on its economy,” she tells Mike. “I worked on the skills report that we published earlier this year. Digital skills are the most underskilled of all the skills. And at the same time, it's the biggest opportunity for any market as well. There needs to be so much work and focus put into this because businesses are going to be crying out for it.”
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