Niki Dow

Senior Director, Technical Communications

Arm. A company that designs and develops technology – intellectual property - that is licensed to semiconductor companies who design microchips that you can find in many of the every day devices we all use. We do not manufacture any chips ourselves.

I lead a team of 100+ people who write technical documents explaining the products we design. I also lead a team of people who look after our technical website, and product delivery channels.

There's never a dull day! I have always loved writing, and writing for people who are doing their jobs using technology is really interesting. I love to see how the work my team does helps our customers be successful. I also love working with people and helping them get better at what they do.

My day starts with my to do list. I make sure I know what I need to achieve by the end of the day and then I move on to checking emails. I like to make sure that all the emails I've received overnight are either actioned straight away, or that I have a plan for actioning them. I do delete a lot of emails too! I will then check my calendar for meetings that I need to attend and make sure that I am prepared. Some of those meetings will be with people on my team where we talk about what they are doing, and how I can help them in their own development. Other meetings will be about how we progress the projects we're working on. I will get some time to think and plan on some days, other days are full of meetings and discussions. I always make time for a cup of tea in the garden if I'm working at home, or if I'm in the office I like to make sure I spend some time catching up in person with people I have not seen for a while. The end of the day is never at the same time, and my goal is to always leave my emails read, actioned, or ready for future action.

I started work after I graduated from a technology company as a secretary. That didn't last long and I was asked to join their technical graduate programme. I went to France to work and became interested in translation, so I spent some time translating some technical documents from French to English. It was then that I discovered technical writing - I loved it and applied for a new job as a technical writer. I worked my way through a few companies learning about different technology and how to write good technical content. I was fortunate to be offered roles in management, and then senior leadership.

I want to keep working for as long as I can while I think I can offer something new and fresh. I also see retirement in the not too distant future, but I don't think I'll ever sit down and do nothing! I can see myself running a farm shop, or making cheese, or baking bread. Seems like food might feature prominently in my future!

I love cooking, baking, and walking my dogs. I like to be as active as I can where we live supporting our neighbours if they need it, and I edit our village newsletter - which is great.

I have been inspired by a few people throughout my life, the current one is from the late Duke of Edinburgh, it's short and sums up how I'm approaching life at the moment: "Say less, do more."