[PODCAST] Career Choices & What Lies Ahead For The Airport Experience

 *** Women In Tech Leadership Series *** 

About This Discussion:

What a great night at the latest recording of our Women In Tech series. This time we were able to sit down with Jodie Brinkerhoff, Vice president of Innovation at DFW Airport. Our main theme was choices and how they affect our careers. The considerations to take when making big career moves, and how these choices get us to our end goal. We also discuss the importance of cultivating relationships with people. DFW Airport may be a city where Jodie and her Innovation teamwork to implement new products and solutions to keep things running smoothly but the people and doing what is right for the customer is at the core. The customers that fly in and out, the employees, and partnering with those that work within DFW Airport. Forming lasting professional relationships and demonstrating that you care about people makes a lasting impact.

About Jodie Brinkerhoff:

Jodie Brinkerhoff is Vice President of Innovation at DFW Airport and leads the Innovation team’s efforts to investigate, ideate, incubate and implement new products and solutions for the airport. Her team works across the enterprise, partnering with core business units and bringing new, emerging technologies as enablers to critical problem solving. She is also responsible for working to develop innovation skill building and culture initiatives for employees.  

Jodie is passionate about understanding new trends and emerging technologies, inspiring transformational corporate culture, and building what’s right for the customer using insights, design thinking, and other innovation techniques. She has a love of work with both start-up ventures and corporate enterprises — her favorite depends on the day. Jodie is an entrepreneurial self-starter with a keen ability to lead through ambiguity and disrupt the status quo.

Prior to joining DFW, Jodie was the North American regional lead for Mastercard’s Labs Unit where she worked with internal product teams and top brands in the retail, banking, and hospitality verticals to deliver new business and consumer solutions. Jodie also spent part of her career as a start up executive with responsibility for sales, client success and marketing. Jodie holds a BA in Communications from Loyola University in Maryland and a master’s degree in business from the University of San Francisco.

For more information about DFW Airport: https://www.dfwairport.com/

Here’s The Official Breakdown:

0:00 Glo, Introduction.

2:41 Women in Tech series with Jodie Brinkerhoff, VP Innovation at DFW Airport.

3:20 Innovation and cross-functional collaboration. 

4:20 Introduction Jodie and guests.

5:37 The theme of the evening, choices.

6:06 Describe yourself in six words.

6:58 Getting people to think outside the box and beyond their title, team building.

8:14 The power of relationships.

10:09 What is your check-in policy to cultivate connections and relationships?

10:51 It is a practice and demonstrating that you care about people and how they are doing.

12:30 Is there a difference in how you approach personal and professional relationships?

13:40 How do you approach the team dynamic relationship? 

14:26 What is your best tip for building a cohesive team? 

15:18 Building a diverse team by design.

16:08 There is tremendous opportunity in our space to be innovative.

17:00 Often times opportunities are a manifestation of the choices you’ve made to get there.

17:50 What do challenges present to you in terms of learning and building a portfolio of skills?

18:55 How do you navigate going from job to job and ensuring that you acquire something from each experience?

19:07 What is a firefighter?

20:30 The balance between understanding how other business units operate and honing the skill sets you need.

21:33 Learning to manage risks and trying new things without getting too deep.

22:43 What were some of the riskiest things you’ve done in your career? 

24:06 Describe some of the great bosses you’ve had.

25:56 Building relationships with trust can lead to learning.

26:50 What drew you to this role at DFW airport?

28:48 The chemistry and conversations you have are so important in setting a first impression.

29:12 How much innovation can you have within an industry that is highly regulated?

30:36 There are so many opportunities to fix what we have said: “well that’s the way it’s always been done”.

31:16 What is DFW’s viewpoint on innovation?

33:06 How do you pace yourself to make smart decisions and keep up with all the technology.

33:59 Process is important to prevent the “shiny ball” syndrome.

34:56 How do you approach getting support for innovative ideas?

35:32 The biggest criterion is “can you work with people?”

36:09 It’s important to paint a picture of how critically important it is that everyone participates is honest and has feedback at the start of a project.

37:15 DFW is a city with many facets, has there been a team before that has brought everyone together like this?

38:29 The department is new but the concept is not.

38:50 Having a cross-functional team that is sitting at the table together.

39:08 Diverse and critical thinking around the table is a powerful thing.

40:26 Have you had pushback and how do you overcome that?

41:24 Can patterns of excellence limit you from thinking outside of the box?

42:30 What’s on the horizon at DFW?

44:06 Customer expectations are growing and are a forcing factor for us.

44:33 Any projects that are coming up?

45:36 Emma the autonomous shuttle.

45:53 Looking ahead to when the technology catches up to the vision.

47:27 Do you have a fear that everything you’re envisioning will become antiquated by the time you can implement it? How cool is it that you get to envision the Jetson future?

50:00 The DFW airport ecosystem.

51:03 Dallas is becoming another hotbed for startups and innovation.


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