Women who lead: Donna Goudie on finding your inner Wonder Woman

Editor’s Note: March is Women’s History Month, and throughout the month, check this space to read about Amadeus women who are making a difference across our company, community and industry.

Name: Donna GoudieDonna hs

Title: Head of Learning, Travel Channels

Years in the industry: 31

Years with Amadeus: 17


What is the most important characteristic a woman in travel tech needs to succeed?

Confidence in yourself and your abilities. Many studies show that women are generally less self-assured than men. Therefore, regarding success, a woman’s confidence can matter as much as competence. I remember being a twenty-something in Niagara Falls, NY. I was reading Business Travel News and saw an ad for a Director of Operations position for a major travel agency in Florida. I typed up a resume, faxed it over, and flew to Miami two weeks later to interview. I got the job and moved to Coral Gables three weeks after that interview – and have never looked back. I often wonder what path my life would have taken had I not had the confidence to take that chance on myself!

How do you give back to the world, and why is it important?

Mentoring and coaching others. My time working with Vic Pynn in Amadeus Operations really showed me the positive impact we can all have on each other. It is extremely rewarding to take time to talk with others about what’s important to them, and then find ways to help them achieve their goals. It is equally essential to ensure that our colleagues have opportunities to learn, grow and develop. Imagine a world where we all tried to help each other become the best versions of ourselves that we could be. Several years ago I became a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach for this very reason.

Who is your greatest female teacher, mentor or role model?

It may sound crazy, but the two women I admire most are Eleanor Roosevelt and Wonder Woman! Eleanor Roosevelt said, “You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”

Anyone who knows me well understands why Wonder Woman is my other role model. She demonstrates that women are just as powerful as men – particularly in the workplace. We are equal, yet different. This is a very important element of being female.

What advice do you give other women who aspire to lead?  

We cannot forget that we are leaders only because others choose to follow us. If you want to lead, my advice is to be the kind of person others want to follow: confident, caring and fair. Take risks, have confidence in your abilities, and when you get the chance, reach out and help others grow, develop and succeed.



  1. Thanks for your great article Donna. I could almost hear the Wonder Woman Music in the background. It’s my pleasure to know you and consider you a friend. Yes it is easy to follow you because you live by the words you wrote.

  2. Congratulations Donna, you are a leader who listens and supports all those around you, or who reach out to you. As I am one of them, thank you for all of your support. You’re a perfect role model for Women’s History Month.

  3. Have watched with pride your growth from a very independent college student to a mature woman who knows what she wants and continues to pursue it. Love. Dad

  4. Congratulations on your new role Donna! I can’t wait to see what the Learning organization will bring under your direction. It’s going to be a fun and rewarding ride.

    Happy International Women’s Day!

  5. Thanks Donna for that wonderful article and for being the strong woman and leader that you are. I have always admired you and look foreward to seeing you succeed once again in your new role.

  6. Donna, what a privilege it is to work in your organization. You epitomize these strengths and values and are an inspiration to me. I am grateful every day.

  7. Having had the pleasure of working with Donna during my time at Amadeus, I can say she truly embodies all of the qualities and strengths of a great leader. She doesn’t just talk the talk; she walks the walk. The importance she places on mentoring and coaching is to be admired, and I feel so fortunate to have worked directly with her in this capacity.

    Donna, it’s great hearing how you got your start and to know that you’ve had that wonderful confidence throughout your entire career!

  8. Nice to hear more about you Donna.. including your start in Niagara Falls, NY so close to us here in Amadeus Canada. I think we all benefited from your push to engage us in the Strength Finders Programme!

    I would like to personally congratulate you on your new role and wish you every success. Here’s to a great International Women’s Day!!

    1. Thanks Jenny! Canada has a special place in my heart. Rox and I go back to Niagara Falls every year and we love it there. Happy International Women’s Day to you too and thanks for your message 🙂

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