Discova Women in Leadership: Mai Anh Le

June 11, 2024

Discova’s Director of Finance Asia, Mai Anh Le, credits her nomadic life with helping her diversify and reach new heights in her career She grew up in northern Vietnam, pursued her undergraduate studies in Singapore before spending nine years working in Ho Chi Minh City. She then lived in Canada for six years before returning to Vietnam. Mai Anh joined Discova less than a year back as Global Finance Controller before being promoted to her new role 

In my eight months with Discova, my leadership journey has been incredibly rewarding. One of my most memorable triumphs has been witnessing the growth of my team members. Elevating and empowering them to take on new roles and positions has been particularly gratifying. 

However, she informs that, like most women in the professional world, balancing work and personal life has been a significant challenge for her, as she strives to spend more time with her kids.  
My former boss once told me that the busier she is, the more productive she becomes, and I have tried to adopt this mindset in my own journey,” adds Mai Anh.

Mai Anh (first from right) at the Inspiring Women in Travel (Asia) Awards 2024

According to Mai Anh, who has extensive experience working in multi-national organisations and heading multicultural teams, leadership transcends gender and is more about having qualities like collaboration, inclusion, vision, mentoring, development, service orientation, resilience, and adaptability. Moreover, working with male colleagues has provided her with a wealth of diverse perspectives, which has been incredibly enriching and valuable for her growth and success. 

“A leader’s success comes from bringing our best selves to work, understanding our stakeholders, and maintaining a mindset of contribution and collaboration.

Coming to her favourite mentors, Mai Anh considers herself lucky to have had great bosses throughout her 16-year career, some of whom have become great friends of hers even after they no longer work together.  

Speaking of her favourite mentors in Discova, she adds, “Suyin is full of knowledge, energy, and vision. Her experience and expertise have been invaluable to me. Rhydian, on the other hand, is incredibly experienced, supportive, and patient. He provides me with lots of coaching, shows me better ways to work and encourages independence.”

Mai Anh (first from left) at a team lunch with Discova Vietnam

In many workplaces worldwide, men in leadership positions are perceived to be assertive and in control, and women are dismissed as bossy. Mai Anh recalls that her children often tease her, saying, “Mom, you’re very bossy!” 

Jokes aside, Mai Anh feels that this skewed nation in the workplace can be challenged by effective communication on the part of a good leader. This is a person who uses positive language and remains clear and specific, provides context, acknowledges expertise, and is open to feedback while interacting with members of their team. 

Personally, she says, “I strive to create a collaborative and inclusive environment for my team, where everyone feels safe to voice their opinions.”  

Her advice to aspiring leaders, especially women, is to believe in themselves and their abilities. By supporting their company, their team, and those around them, they can make a significant impact. 

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