“Integrity is everything. Be confident, ethical, and stand tall.” — Noreen Bergin, CFO of Shipt
In this month’s Executive Engagement, I had the pleasure of interviewing Noreen Bergin, CFO of Shipt. Noreen embodies many of the qualities I admire in a female leader—brilliant and respected in the workplace and a dedicated mother of two at home. Although humble about her success and countless career accolades, Noreen is what my four-year-old daughter would call “a complete and total rock star.”
As a Bay Area native and admired CFO, Noreen stands out as a leading woman among her peers. She has held executive finance positions in some of the industry’s most innovative companies including SurveyMonkey, Netscape, Frame, and Boole & Babbage. Noreen is now at Shipt, an online nationwide delivery marketplace and a wholly owned subsidiary of Target Corporation. I was excited to have the opportunity to sit down with Noreen and learn more about how she got to where she is today in her career.
An Interview with Noreen Bergin:
What challenges have you faced being a woman in your profession?
- The real challenge in finance (which goes for men and women) is that the function is not equally valued as other teams within an organization. The perception that engineering, marketing, and sales are superior to other support functions is a very real perception. Companies are made up of diverse critical teams performing unique functional tasks that all have to work together to obtain results. No one team is more valuable than another. All teams have unique functions that support the organization as a whole. I’ve witnessed this unconscious bias in every company I’ve worked in and it’s disappointing.
If you had to give a piece of advice to a younger version of yourself, what would it be?
- Role models are a must for all young women. She doesn’t necessarily need to be in your specific field because the most important qualities to take in will be her interpersonal skills. I was fortunate to have five older sisters as my early role models when my mother passed away when I was fourteen. In some situations, I still look to them for insight and guidance. Integrity is everything. Be confident, ethical and stand tall.
What is your motto in life and how does it relate to your work?
- “Hop over it”: Meaning things go wrong, errors happen, situations don’t turn out as planned. I learn from them and move on with positivity and optimism.
If you could choose any other profession or career path, what would it be and why?
- With over 35 years in finance, it’s difficult to imagine anything else. But perhaps I’d say something having to do with fitness and living a healthy lifestyle. Why? I’m so passionate about it.
If you could have dinner with any woman leaders, who would it be and why? Where would you go?
- I would love, love, love to sit down and have a conversation over dinner with Michelle Obama. I admire everything about her. The words that come to mind are a leader, inspirational role model, integrity, intelligence, sincerity, grounded, physically fit, and an amazing sense of humor. I would like to spend my time with Michelle in a comfortable, casual setting, sipping on a wonderful glass of wine.
I hope you are as energized as I am about the opportunity to get to know female leaders like Noreen in this Executive Engagement series. No matter your gender, age, or title in your career––I find that there’s true value in always challenging yourself to learn and grow from others.