Jeannie Stoll is a mom of two. She enjoys flying and flexibility with Switzerland startup Drone Harmony. Jeannie took time out of her busy schedule to share her insights into her experience in the industry. 

Your Background

What did you do prior to coming into the industry?

My passions are traveling and nature. For this reason I studied tourism and worked for a long time in marketing for Switzerland tourism. It was a pleasure for me to make our beautiful country attractive to foreign guests and to inspire them to spend their vacations in Switzerland.

Industry Experience

How did you get started in the drone industry?

Through friends I was asked by the CEO of the startup Drone Harmony if I would take over the marketing for his company on a small part-time basis. I did not have to think twice, because the previous marketing was pretty minimal which meant I could draw from the full range in all marketing matters and thus make an important contribution to the growth of the whole company. This was, of course, a very exciting opportunity. At first I only had theoretical access to drones, but as time went on I didn’t want to be dependent on my coworkers to generate drone photos, screenshots, etc. for the marketing and ventured into drones myself. I also wanted to improve my understanding of our application and test it out myself so that I could better understand the hurdles and difficulties faced by our users.

Tell us about your current organization

I am the Marketing Manager at Drone Harmony. Drone Harmony is a leader in automation software for data acquisition workflows in the commercial drone market. Its software solutions are based on a proprietary 3D Flight Planning Engine enabling market-leading degrees of automation in flight plan generation, plan visualization and flight execution, leading to safer and more efficient data acquisition.

Tell us about your current role in the industry

In my role as Marketing Manager at Drone Harmony, I am responsible for the communication and work closely with our team to create and share content via our website, blog, social channels, and webinars to provide the drone community with the most up to date information on feature updates on our apps. In addition, I am now working in our organization as a test pilot to test our application on new drones and systems. So I’m also out in the field a lot with various drones, tablets and smartphones.

What do you like most about being in the industry?

Drones have a bad image because of their use in wars and also because they are noisy and disturb privacy. But the spectrum is so much wider and I see it as an exciting challenge that I can bring the positive use of drones to people through my work. This industry is fast growing and very innovative. It impresses me how the use of drones simplifies the work of many and, above all, makes it safer.

What’s your favorite type of project and why?

As a marketing manager, the best thing is to be able to communicate news that users had been waiting for, such as the long-awaited support of iOS with Drone Harmony. As a test pilot, I like it best when I find bugs and can thus contribute to the successful development of our apps.

What excites you most about the potential for women in the industry?

In Switzerland, unfortunately, exciting part-time jobs are very rare and thus well-educated women who raise children often end up in a dilemma. I myself am a mother of two boys and can organize my working hours very flexibly due to my job as a test pilot and marketing manager of a startup. I see great potential here for more women in my position to find exciting work in such an innovative industry.

What’s your current favorite drone to fly?

I like to fly with the Inspire 2 or the Mavic Pro, because they are very stable and constant. But privately for fun I prefer to fly with the FPV, here the flight experience is simply unbeatable.

What You’ve Learned

What has been your most significant “lightbulb” moment since you entered the industry?

Actually, it was the realization that flying a drone, whether manually or with an app for autonomous drone inspection is not as complicated or difficult as I had imagined. It was a great moment when I was on my own with the drone for the first time and all the possibilities opened up to me.

Any suggestions for other women entering the industry?

Dare to use drone technology, it is not reserved for men. You are just as capable of flying drones! If you need to, write down step by step what the working procedures are, and dare to ask a lot of questions.