Headshot of Mai Youa Moua, university of Minnesota
Mai Youa Moua, Organizational Development Consultant & Executive Coach, University of Minnesota

Although Mai Youa Moua wouldn’t describe herself as a technologist, she spends most of her days working with and around IT professionals. As an Organizational Development Consultant and Executive Coach, Moua is immersed in the world of technology and IT. In 2023, Moua participated in the 18th cohort of ACE Leadership to enhance her leadership capabilities. We sat down with Moua to learn more about her experience in the Minnesota Technology Association’s leadership development program.

What is your current role and how would you describe what you do?

I serve as an Organizational Development Consultant and Executive Coach to IT leaders at the University of Minnesota. I work with IT leaders across the institution to improve the University’s capability through the alignment of technology strategy, structure, people, and management processes. Much of my work focuses on team effectiveness, employee engagement and development, talent management and fluidity, and fostering inclusive work environments.

What aspects of the program did you find most appealing?

I really appreciated the leadership coaching component of the program. I was matched with someone who is in my line of work and who also works closely with tech leaders. I not only received suggestions and advice related to the leadership content from ACE and how to apply what I was learning, but I also gained valuable advice pertaining to my career and where I can grow in my field.

ACE Leadership covers multiple topics, from stronger communication to understanding the tech landscape in MN. Which session was most valuable to you in your leadership journey?

One of the most impactful sessions for me was Communicating for Results, specifically, the content around effective communications and storytelling. Much of the work I do involves getting technology leaders to see the value of investing in their people through creating inclusive and psychologically safe work environments, providing stretch opportunities to help staff develop on the job, and thinking more holistically about their talent. The content provided practical approaches and tips I can use to get buy-in from tech leaders to expand their focus beyond the technology.

Thinking about your interactions with other leaders and peers in the program, how have these relationships helped you grow?

While I work with technologists every day, I wouldn’t describe myself as a technologist. The program and the leaders I met through the program, whether they were my peers or senior leaders who shared their own experiences and expertise, provided insight into shared challenges that technology leaders faced, helping me gain a better understanding of the leaders I work with.

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