Round of Applause – We Beat Them Odds

1 min read

by Nicole Hargrove

One of my favorite rappers is Lecrae.  I find his song Round of Applause to be apropos for the phase Strategio is in.  For the last few weeks we have been hiring.  To hear the stories of these potential technologists has been inspirational.  It brought me back to a place where I was a 23yr old college graduate pursuing an opportunity in tech.  My dream company was International Business Machines Corporation aka IBM.  I went to Old Dominion University’s Career Services center and found an ad for a diversity program called IBM Project View.  Through this program I was able to land a software engineering role at my dream company.  At IBM I learned so much about not only tech but also about how to be a leader and an "intrapreneur".  In spite of my background- one generation removed from living in the projects of Baltimore, Maryland – shout out to McCulloh Homes- I guess you can say I beat them odds!!

Round of Applause to…

  • Those that didn’t quit on themselves!.  You continued to pursue your goals and mission in spite of closed doors.  You kept knocking until one opened!
  • Those that graduated from high school/GED, college/university, boot camp and vocational school! You have amassed an education that can be used in the next leg of your career journey.
  • Those that pursued those certifications!  You may have failed multiple times but didn’t stop until you got that certification.  Now you have learned the value of studying to know and grow not just to get a certification.  
  • Those that received promotions, new roles, switched companies, left the workforce to get retrained and those who are coming back to the workforce!  I know the journey seems like it has been long but just know you have endured!
  • Those that started that business!  Special shout out to my CEO, Conor Delanbanque, for starting Strategio.  People are waiting for your services and products.  People are also in place to help your passion become reality! 


Since being in tech I have made it my mission to change the face of IT!  As companies review their diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB)  initiatives from 2021 and set goals for 2022, please keep in mind how important it is to be intentional about DEIB.  One way to fulfill DEIB would be to hire early career diverse talent.  Strategio understands that 25% of all computer related jobs are held by women.  African-American women have a 3% representation in software engineering and Hispanic women only 2%.  Strategio’s mission directly tackles these problems by proactively sourcing, investing, training and delivering underrepresented talent for enterprise organizations.  



With 2022 before us, I want to encourage everyone, especially those that have become part of Strategio’s community of technologists, to continue to defy the odds and thanks for making Strategio a part of your career journey!  Keep pursuing your destiny!  I also want to encourage companies to consider talent creation through Strategio to meet your DEIB needs!  Remember SHARING KNOWLEDGE IS POWER and KEEP LEARNING!