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Profile Series: Women Leading in Tech Staffing

Spotlight on Mirtes Lobaito

Founder and CEO, AGM Tech Solutions

  • Inc5000 2023/2022 #38
  • TOP CEO 2021 Glassdoor
  • A WBENC and MBE certified

Mirtes Lobaito is a prime example of the strength and tenacity that leaders in our industry commonly share. She is the epitome of living the American dream. Arriving here as a young adult, Mirtes’s strong work ethic and drive — a credit to her entrepreneurial parents— helped her gain footing in the workforce and propelled her to her leadership role today, as Founder and CEO of AGM Tech Solutions.

AGM Tech Solutions is a growing tech staffing firm operating in the tough New York market and branching out across the U.S. For nearly 6 years, AGM has been servicing enterprise-level, Fortune 500 organization with a focus on building long-lasting client relationships and believing in the talent they deliver.

“As you know, everybody says, ‘I fell into a staffing industry’, and yes, I truly did. One day [when I was working in software sales] I received a call from a recruiter offering me an opportunity to interview for an IT staffing company. I didn’t even know that this industry existed. So I went to an interview, got the job, and wanted just to learn more. I had some sales, foundational skills there and fell in love with staffing. I think I just immediately resonated with the industry because when I came to this country for an opportunity, many people believed in me even when I didn’t have all the skills. And then here I was, in an industry where this is exactly what you do day in, day out — you connect people to opportunities.”

Mirtes’s story is inspiring as well as heart-warming (did you know AGM is the acronym for her children’s middle initials?). Her enthusiasm, determination and authentic personality shone through during our interview profiling women leaders in staffing.

Do you have a mantra that you live by, or an inspirational quote that reflects your leadership style?

Recently I made a post for Women’s History Month, and it was about my mom because she truly paved the way for me. I watched her go from bankruptcy three times and then bounce right back. And I said, Mom, if you could redefine yourself or, just define your journey, what would that look like? Give me a word. And she says ‘courage.’ I have to say that is really what defines me. Leaving your country at 21 years old, not speaking the language, coming to a country where you know nobody. It requires an enormous amount of courage.

The other thing I would say is everybody has potential in them. Everybody has a seed of greatness in themselves, and it takes somebody to believe in that one person, to then see what that person can become. I am only here today because I had people that opened doors for me when I didn’t know how to speak English, when I didn’t have it all perfect. I still don’t have a college degree, but it took somebody to have faith in me. My leadership mantra is believing in people, pour into them, show them that they’re more than what they think they’re capable of.

Please share one of the most memorable moments that helped define your career as a staffing leader.

When I worked at my previous company, I had a boss who really believed in me. I was always afraid to fail and he would tell me ‘Mirtes don’t be afraid, you’ve got this.’ So, I think instilling faith in somebody and again helping them recognize and believe in themselves to go farther than they think they can, I think that was crucial for me.

But I think that a defining moment for me was starting my company because it’s something I had never done before. I had never hired employees. I had never managed employees. I didn’t have the capital to start this company. I went to five banks and they all said no to me. So, I started something from nothing, just believing that what I am about to do can truly create an impact and be different. As you know, there are thousands of companies in U.S. that do exactly what I do today. That was a true test of whether I can do this. Do I have what it takes? Are people going to believe in me? I was hesitant to say that I was the CEO of my company. I was afraid that other people wouldn’t take me as seriously because I had never been a CEO before. I think proving that I could do this and seeing it unfold was a defining moment for me in my career.

Is there an influential woman who has served as an inspiration to you? This could be a former colleague, family member, mentor, historical figure, etc.

Throughout my career, I’ve had so many people inspire me that I don’t want to do a disservice to pick one person right now. Truly, it’s been a combination of leaders and colleagues with whom I intend to stay engaged with, even within the TechServe Alliance community.

There is no doubt I did not get here by myself. I did not get here on my own and until this day, I refuse to say I’m the smartest one in the room or I have all the answers. I don’t. I like to say I’m a lifelong learner. I value so, so much, the friendships that I’ve had, whether it’s personal or professional. And when you’re doing something that you’ve never done, you need to find those people who are going to be there for you. People that have gone where you’re going. And I’ve always relied on my relationships, my network, to help me when I need it. And thankfully, I’ve had that credibility and those relationships to count on because I clearly would not be here today without them.

In year’s past, many women-led organizations have worked together to announce pledges for continuing the mission to elevate women in the workplace. How will you be paving-it-forward to help advance women in their careers?

Being a women-owned company, it’s in my DNA. I can’t even run from my calling because it’s right here! We must acknowledge the opportunities right in front of us and the people right around us. Every person needs some kind of help, or opportunities that they may not have right now. And I think first is acknowledging there is an opportunity in front of you to help someone. It could be somebody in your company, a colleague from another company or someone from your church, or a school.

I think that everything that I’ve gained so far, everything that I’ve known and learned, I can’t just keep it for myself. It would be very selfish of me. So, when there are any opportunities that I have in my company, I share it. I’m always coaching. I’m always mentoring. I’m always looking for opportunities to develop people, to teach them. It’s something that I’m very, very passionate about. Sometimes I offer advice when I’m not even called upon because I just love to help so much!

I think that sometimes as women we overcomplicate things and say to ourselves, “maybe I don’t have anybody to coach” or “maybe I don’t have anybody to contribute to.” Yes, you do. You start with your home. You start with your daughters. You start with whomever you have around you. It’s acknowledging that everybody around you needs something. Then use your strength and those gifts that you already have inside of you to benefit them.

I think every woman needs to be told over and over again that they are a masterpiece. That they are a great mom. They are a great worker. They are a great wife. That there is more to life than just what’s in front of them. I think having that belief and knowing that worthiness … you’re worthy of this. Otherwise, a lot of times we don’t step into Our Calling because we don’t think that we deserve that. I went through those moments. Sometimes I still do. I questioned. Do I even deserve to be here? Do I have what it takes?

And the reality is we do, we just haven’t tapped into those areas, just haven’t developed those. So, I think just give yourself grace and have faith in yourself and surround yourself with people who are going to pour into your life and make you better than you are today.

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