“[I] have always had playing a leadership role as part of my larger life plan," says Diana Tidd, managing director and head of equity index products at MSCI.

In this heated election season, Diana Tidd might be wondering right now just how well her candidacy would have fared.

After all, Tidd says, when she first interviewed with MSCI 16 years ago, she told the CEO that her future goal was to become President of the United States.

“Although that is no longer true, I do think of one day potentially becoming a CEO,” Tidd says. “[I] have always had playing a leadership role as part of my larger life plan. That goal has focused my decision-making process with regards to my career. ”

As managing director and head of equity index products at MSCI, Tidd has assumed plenty of executive power. She has helped shape enduring industry innovations, such as the MSCI ACWI Index and the GICS, the global industry classification standard.

“I really enjoy building businesses and I am a problem solver at heart,” she says. “I am very proud to say that today [MSCI ACWI] is the industry standard benchmark for pension funds to use as a policy index, and for global mandates out to the asset managers they hire.”

Tidd forsees a number of changes ahead for the industry, and continuously tasks her team to question what the firm is doing and envision what will be different in three to five years.

She encourages women to join industry organizations such as Women in ETFs.

“We are lucky to be working in finance at a time when these organizations are flourishing, and providing us a backbone of support.”

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