Women in Mobile. Meet Dafna Ben-Onn, One of the Women Game Changers in the Mobile Industry

Aarki Women in Mobile - Dafna Ben-Onn, Director of Monetization of SciPlay

The gender gap in tech is gradually decreasing, and the mobile tech industry is doing its part to offer more leadership roles to women.

Aarki is passionate about strengthening women’s leadership and voices. Here we continue our series highlighting women in the mobile industry. 

Dafna Ben-Onn
Director of Monetization, SciPlay Corporation

"I strongly believe that having goals is the way to grow. However distant they may seem, having a path will get you closer to them, even if it means you need to make adjustments along the way."

Q: What’s the company culture like at SciPlay?
The atmosphere here is quite unique, it's very young and engaging in a way that's hard to find anywhere else. The organizational structure is flat and free of any hierarchies or organizational politics.  

The company is divided into different teams based on our games. Each team is fully responsible for all aspects of the game, including Development, Analysis, Marketing etc. The teams work together in shared spaces, which has a huge contribution to the social and motivational advantage of the company. Each worker has the power to affect the final outcome of the game which drives everyone to do their best within their field, in a shared effort to make their game successful. 

Along the way, we highly value fun, which is why our main motto is "We make games!". As in, "Hey, we make games, so let's enjoy it!". In every company event we're reminded of how privileged we are to work here and be part of a field that revolves around creating positive experiences driven by true passion.

Q: What do you see as the biggest challenge for women in tech and how do we overcome it?
Although we’ve progressed a lot towards gender equality, I still believe that the biggest challenge for women is raising a family alongside developing a career. Men and women’s starting point is uneven as it is, but once a woman gets pregnant, the gap deepens. Biologically there are certain things only women can do, which puts us at a disadvantage compared to our male co-workers. From that point onward, if you choose to peruse your career, it can be quite challenging. I personally decided to keep up with the pace at work and push even harder to make it all work. For that to happen, you need a great partner or support system who share all household and parental responsibilities with you.  

Q: What are the most important values you demonstrate as a leader?
What's important to me as a leader is truly seeing the person standing in front of me and guiding them through their journey. It's easy to forget that the person in front of you is more than the sum of their responsibilities. Whether it's someone who is under my direct or indirect leadership, I always make an effort to communicate in a way that considers the person's current state and main difficulties alongside their strengths and weaknesses.

Q: What is the biggest misconception about the mobile advertising industry?
Mobile advertising is highly associated with spam. We live in a world where content is thrown at us from every direction. A mobile advertiser has no interest in creating a negative emotion, causing a negative association with their product. Should an individual feel spammed, we are lucky enough to live in a day and age where we have full control over what we’re exposed to and how much we consume of it.  

Mobile advertising done well should not make the person on the other end feel like they are being spammed. In contrary, it’s meant to add value and offer a service or a product that is perfectly tailored to that person. 

When I’m targeted with a relevant ad that I interact with, whether it’s a product I end up buying or an app I end up downloading, I feel great when I can derive value from it, and as a result I remember it as an overall positive experience. As a marketer, that’s the feeling I strive to give our potential players.

Q: How do you define success?
I set both professional and personal goals ahead of time. With each goal, I plan relevant and realistic milestones. Reaching a goal is defined as clear success to me.  

I strongly believe that having goals is the way to grow. However distant they may seem, having a path will get you closer to them, even if it means you need to make adjustments along the way.

Dafna Ben-Onn of SciPlay
Q: How do you stay motivated?
My motivation is derived from interest and my passion for innovation. As long as I keep on expanding my knowledge, I know that I'm on the right track for me. 

Q: What is your best childhood memory?
Every weekend my parents used to take me and my sister hiking throughout the country. My mom had an extensive knowledge of nature, plants and the environment, and it was very important to her to pass it along to us. Every trip would end with a huge jug of hot chocolate which is something that puts a smile on my face to this day. 

Q: What’s the coolest thing you have ever done?
I served as an officer in the Air Force for a few years. One of the projects I was responsible for, was a collaboration with the American Air Force. The project went very well, and I was rewarded with the opportunity to fly in an F-16. It was a crazy experience! They prepare you for it, but you can’t be ready for the physical aspect of it. It’s like riding a rollercoaster, but 100 times more intense.

Q: What is a skill you'd like to learn and why?
During the last couple of months, I've gotten really into weightlifting. I find it exhilarating! I love the feeling of strength and achievement it gives me when I break a new personal record. Ever since I started, I feel healthier and stronger and I hope to one day be able to compete in it.

Q: What advice would you give to your younger self?
Be confident. You’ve got this!


Topics: Women in Mobile