Antonietta Mastroianni: Pioneering a Connected Future Through Technology and Innovation

Unveiling the Journey of Proximus’ Chief Digital and IT Officer!

In today’s fast-paced world, technology and innovation have become the driving forces behind transformative change in almost every aspect of our lives. From how we communicate and work to how we shop and even how we navigate our cities, technology has seamlessly woven itself into the fabric of our existence. Amidst this rapid evolution, one thing is certain: the pioneers of our connected future are those who dare to push the boundaries of what’s possible through innovative thinking and the power of technology.

 At a young age, the realms of technology, artificial intelligence (AI), and telecommunications (telco) captured the imagination of Antonietta Mastroianni, an inspirational figure who currently stands as the Chief Digital and IT Officer of Proximus. Enchanted by the intricate complexities of these fields, she was captivated by their potential to shape the world in transformative ways. Fueled by a relentless drive, she embarked on a journey to harness the power of technology for the creation of a more interconnected and enhanced global community.

 Proximus Group, headquartered in Belgium, emerges as a pivotal player in the realm of telecommunications services. Renowned for its commitment to innovation and sustainable progress, Proximus offers a comprehensive spectrum of products ranging from telephony and internet services to television and network-based ICT solutions. At the heart of this trailblazing venture stands Antonietta, the driving force propelling Proximus towards new horizons of digital excellence.

 With an unwavering passion for technology, AI, and telco, Antonietta envisions a future where connectivity is not merely a convenience but a way of life. Her dedication to creating a better, more interconnected world fuels her determination to leverage these powerful tools to their utmost potential. As a leader in the digital realm, she understands that the fusion of innovation, cutting-edge technology, and sustainability can unlock unprecedented possibilities, propelling both individuals and businesses toward previously unattainable heights.

 Antonietta’s commitment to sustainable development is woven into the very fabric of her leadership philosophy. Proximus’ innovative approach to digital technology is not just about advancement; it’s about creating a sustainable future. By intertwining technology with an eco-conscious mindset, she exemplifies how business and innovation can coexist harmoniously with environmental stewardship.

 In a world where digital technology shapes the present and defines the future, Antonietta is an inspiration for those who dare to dream big, innovate fearlessly, and forge a path toward a more connected, sustainable, and prosperous world.

Below are the highlights of the interview:

 Drawing Inspiration from Remarkable Achievers

 During her upbringing, Antonietta’s aspirations were kindled by an admiration for individuals who embodied greatness through their relentless pursuit of perfection, unwavering dedication to their craft, and steadfast determination in the face of challenges.

 Her fascination lay in the elegance, strength, and harmonious control exhibited by professional dancers. Their ability to make the demands seem effortless, symbolizing beauty, resilience, and grit, left an indelible impression. Equally, athletes evoked in her a deep respect for hard work, persistence, and the mental strength required to achieve remarkable feats. These figures showcased the remarkable human potential that emerges when passion and effort are synchronized.

 Antonietta learned about the importance of discipline, the captivating blend of artistry and athleticism, and the language of expression beyond words. They became the driving force behind her dreams, propelling her to strive for excellence, transcend mediocrity, unlock her potential, and infuse each endeavor with unwavering dedication and superior quality.

These exceptional achievers stood as symbols of the unconquerable human spirit, where determination meets endurance, inspiring her to lead a life marked by excellence and unwavering commitment to achieving her own version of greatness.

 Navigating Challenges on the Path of Leadership

 Antonietta’s journey through leadership presented her with the challenge of nurturing unwavering self-belief and confidence, especially in environments that weren’t always supportive or inclusive.

 She reflects, “It was a subtle yet tangible pressure that tested my resolve and confidence. Early on, I recognized that to thrive, I needed to foster an unshakable faith in my own capabilities. I was well aware of the value I brought, and I refused to let anyone’s biases or preconceived notions undermine my self-assurance.”

Articulating her bold aspirations and potential was another trial she faced, particularly when they were viewed as audacious and her abilities were underestimated. Antonietta mastered the art of communicating her objectives and strengths with clarity and conviction. She learned to advocate for herself, navigate intricate power dynamics, and cultivate meaningful professional relationships that bolstered her career progression.

 The notion that assertive and ambitious women might be perceived as aggressive or off-putting prompted Antonietta to strike a delicate balance between asserting her ambitions and sidestepping the potential backlash associated with women challenging societal norms.

These challenges, as it turned out, were invaluable learning opportunities. They were ingrained in her resilience, assertiveness, and unshakeable self-assurance, leading her to forge an authentic and impactful leadership style that respects diverse viewpoints and experiences. Above all, they molded her into a resilient leader deeply committed to fostering inclusivity, equality, and empowerment within the workplace.

 Leading Digital Transformation

 In her role as Chief Digital and IT Officer at Proximus, Antonietta takes the lead in devising, executing, and strategizing digital and IT operations. Her responsibilities span from supervising the IT landscape to steering digital transformation initiatives that align with overarching business goals. Notably, she played a pivotal role in designing a data architecture that harnesses AI’s potential. This robust and secure data infrastructure fuels data-driven insights and AI-powered decision-making, thus elevating capabilities, enriching customer experiences, and streamlining operations.

Amid the rising tide of cyber threats and data breaches, Antonietta shoulders the critical responsibility of safeguarding digital assets and customer data. She maintains a vigilant stance by consistently reviewing and updating cybersecurity strategies. Her aim is to fortify defenses and effectively counter potential threats. Overseeing the development and management of digital applications, including TV services, is yet another facet of her role. This involves staying attuned to the latest digital trends and aligning offerings with ever-evolving customer expectations and the competitive landscape.

Beyond the telecom realm, Antonietta fosters the growth of the digital ecosystem, a journey she finds deeply gratifying. Her efforts contribute to shaping both her organization’s digital future and the broader trajectory of the tech industry. In her own words, “What drives me is the understanding that my work carries substantial impact and contributes to shaping a world that’s more interconnected.”

Through her multifaceted role, Antonietta brings her expertise to the forefront of Proximus’s transformation, propelling the company toward a more digital, secure, and customer-centric future.

 Nurturing Team Spirit

As a leader, Antonietta carries the responsibility of maintaining her team’s motivation, connectivity, and inspiration. Achieving this requires consistent, open communication that makes each team member feel heard and valued. “Prioritizing individual connections, understanding their dreams and concerns, and offering constructive feedback are vital. An open-door policy cultivates trust and transparency, which are essential for nurturing motivation and connection,” she shares.

Antonietta leads through action, embodying dedication, resilience, and adaptability, showcasing the values and work ethics she hopes her team will adopt. Acknowledging accomplishments by celebrating project completions and significant milestones is her way of honoring their hard work and pushing them to reach even higher.

 To foster a culture of continual learning and innovation, she regularly shares captivating demos, unveiling cutting-edge technology and innovation. By updating her team on the latest trends, she sparks curiosity and underscores the significance of staying updated, all while building an atmosphere of inspiration and ongoing learning. Antonietta firmly believes that grasping the potential of technology’s capabilities can be an immense wellspring of motivation.

Antonietta’s commitment to professional growth stands out—she encourages team members to seek out learning opportunities, provides resources to sharpen skills, and actively advocates for their career progression. By demonstrating that their growth is highly valued, she instills motivation. Her emphasis on collaboration and inclusivity ensures team members feel part of a united and supportive community, boosting motivation, productivity, and innovation.

“I aim to ensure every team member feels valued, respected, and included. My approach to maintaining motivation, connection, and inspiration is multifaceted and people-centric. I believe that nurturing an environment rooted in transparent communication, continual learning, acknowledgment, and inclusiveness is the cornerstone of a motivated and inspired team,” she affirms.

Embracing Success

For Antonietta, success is intricately woven into the fabric of her organization’s core values. It means translating these principles into actions, fostering authenticity, and finding fulfillment in their shared mission. Moreover, success encompasses recognizing that her team’s happiness and health are pivotal to their combined achievements. Thus, creating a culture that promotes self-care and values well-being becomes a defining metric of success, as the organization’s mental, physical, and emotional vitality significantly influences its overall performance and longevity.

Striving for excellence is another cornerstone of Antonietta’s definition of success. It’s not about infallibility but about challenging herself, learning, expanding her boundaries, and pushing her potential. She aims to surpass her previous achievements while understanding that progress itself is an accomplishment. From a leadership perspective, execution is just as vital as the outcome. It involves translating ideas and goals into action and demonstrating the resilience and determination that success often demands.

Antonietta firmly believes that success revolves around nurturing her team and organization. It’s about coaching and inspiring those under her leadership, creating an environment that fosters growth and contribution. Her influence and skills extend beyond personal gains; they’re channeled into sparking growth, fostering innovation, and making meaningful impacts both within and beyond the organization. Leadership success, according to Antonietta, hinges on embodying values, prioritizing well-being, relentlessly pursuing excellence, executing with unwavering dedication, and motivating others to partake in the collective journey of growth and accomplishment.

The Power of Technology and Telecommunications

Antonietta’s fervor for technology and telecommunications serves as a guiding beacon for her organization’s collective mission. She perceives them as the vital life force propelling the organization forward, holding the key to unlocking countless possibilities for the betterment of society.

“I’m profoundly captivated by the limitless potential of technology, particularly the transformative prowess of AI. It’s not merely a display of machine learning; it’s an indispensable partner in our journey of innovation and progress. AI signifies the evolution of decision-making, creative problem-solving, and ingenuity in our digital realm. My role involves fostering an environment that encourages the exploration of this expansive domain, positioning us at the forefront of this technological revolution,” she explains.

For Antonietta, telecommunications transcends being a mere infrastructure or communication tool. It forms the bedrock of a connected and inclusive world, a potent instrument for bridging gaps, nurturing relationships, and empowering individuals, irrespective of their geographic location. Connectivity fosters collaboration, dissolves geographical boundaries, and democratizes access to information. This ethos underscores Antonietta’s leadership style and shapes her organizational vision. It propels her team to seek innovative solutions, challenge norms, drive transformation, explore uncharted territories, innovate, and relentlessly strive for excellence.

“My aspiration as a leader is to channel this passion into effecting positive change in the world. I envision a future where our endeavors in technology and telecommunications contribute to forging an equitable, interconnected society. This entails equipping everyone with the means and opportunities to fulfill their potential. My objective is to guide our organization in transforming this vision into reality by harnessing the power of technology and connectivity to improve the world,” she shares.

Antonietta acknowledges that transitioning from a traditional telecommunications operator to a technology-focused, digital ecosystem company presents an array of challenges and obstacles, including: 

  • Legacy Systems: It is complex, time-consuming, and costly to transition from outdated legacy hardware and software systems and infrastructure to newer technologies that support a digitally driven business model.
  • Cultural Shift: Profound change in corporate culture, like fostering a mindset of innovation, risk-taking, and agility
  • Regulatory Environment: Navigating a new set of regulatory complexities related to data privacy, cybersecurity, etc.
  • Talent Acquisition and Retention: Attracting, retaining, and developing talent and accessing new skill sets given the competitive nature of the tech industry
  • Data Management and Security: Building infrastructure and processes for data management and ensuring robust cybersecurity for handling massive amounts of data securely and efficiently
  • Rapidly Evolving Competition: Constant innovation and adaptability to deal with competition and the fast pace of change
  • Customer Expectations: Meeting high customer expectations in terms of seamless user experiences, personalized services, and constant innovation while undergoing a major transformation

Amidst these challenges, the evolution of a company into a digital ecosystem has become imperative in the face of swift technological advancements, unveiling novel avenues for growth and innovation. Antonietta is at the helm of Proximus, steering it through this ongoing transformation, stretching the limits of what a telecommunications company can achieve, and propelling the expansion of its digital ecosystem.

“The voyage is intricate yet incredibly gratifying, holding the potential to leave a profound mark on the industry. Maintaining motivation is paramount in my role, and it primarily stems from my unwavering passion for what I do and my well-defined objectives. I thrive amidst challenges, ceaselessly propelling myself to learn and evolve. I remain engaged with thought leaders in my domain, absorbing their insights and drawing inspiration from their journeys,” she asserts.

Antonietta’s resolute dedication to driving her company’s transformation and fostering innovation is not only a testament to her leadership but also an inspiration for professionals navigating the ever-changing landscape of technology and telecommunications.

Leading the Charge

Throughout her remarkable career, Antonietta has been a trailblazer for women in technology, dismantling barriers and illustrating that gender should never hinder the pursuit of excellence. Her triumphs have paved the way for countless other women, igniting their aspirations to thrive in the tech realm. She is resolute in her belief that diverse leadership propels innovation and that cultivating an inclusive environment is pivotal to nurturing a thriving and accomplished organization.

Antonietta’s aspiration is to revolutionize conventional telecommunications, reshaping it into a dynamic landscape driven by technology and agility. With keen foresight, she recognized the trajectory toward digital ecosystems early on, guiding both her organization and the industry toward this transformative shift. She emphasized the necessity of adaptability and nimbleness amidst the swiftly evolving technological terrain, advocating for telecom enterprises to embrace a technology-centric approach to remain competitive and pertinent.

The pinnacle of Antonietta’s contributions lies in spearheading the transition to digital ecosystems. She championed a comprehensive perspective that transcends mere technological alterations, encompassing changes in business models, organizational culture, and customer interaction strategies. This holistic approach has redefined the future of the industry, positioning it to seize the prospects presented by the digital age.

“I take immense pride in the impact I’ve had on the telecommunications sector. My endeavors to advance gender equality, envision a technology-infused future and endorse organizational agility have elevated industry standards. My goal is to continue forging the path towards a more inclusive, inventive, and dynamic telecommunications landscape, inspiring others to embark on the same transformative journey,” she asserts.

Antonietta’s legacy is one of empowerment, innovation, and unwavering dedication to progress. Her journey serves as a beacon for aspiring tech leaders and a testament to the transformative potential of visionary leadership that champions inclusivity and embraces the boundless possibilities of technology.

Embracing the Digital Frontier

Proximus is on a mission to redefine the landscape of technological companies by taking the lead in the digital ecosystem. This ambitious goal revolves around three fundamental pillars: embracing software-based solutions, fostering a cultural shift towards agility, and placing sustainability at the forefront.

The journey commences with a decisive move away from conventional legacy systems, which can hinder adaptability and innovation in today’s fast-paced digital realm. Instead, Proximus is transitioning towards software-based solutions, a process aptly termed “Softwarizing.” This strategic shift entails transforming assets into flexible, scalable, and efficient software-based systems. By doing so, the company aims to reduce the total cost of ownership (TCO) while enhancing its ability to swiftly respond to evolving market dynamics and customer demands.

Antonietta is equally committed to cultivating a cultural transformation within Proximus. She champions the adoption of Agile methodologies throughout the organization, advocating for cross-functional collaboration, iterative progress, and a deep-rooted customer-centric mindset. This strategic shift accelerates the pace of delivery, boosts responsiveness to change, and amplifies overall operational efficiency. By doing so, teams are empowered, silos are dismantled, and a culture of continuous improvement takes root.

Sustainability remains a cornerstone of Antonietta’s strategy. Her dedication to sustainability permeates every facet of Proximus’ operations. From integrating energy-efficient technologies to promoting responsible consumption, the goal is to minimize the company’s ecological footprint and make positive contributions to communities. “Sustainability, for us, is not just a moral imperative; it’s woven into our business strategy and corporate identity,” she asserts.

Antonietta’s vision extends to harnessing the wealth of data resources and cutting-edge AI technologies at Proximus’ disposal. By doing so, she aims to drive personalized customer experiences, streamline operations, and make predictive decisions that foster growth and revolutionize service offerings. Proximus’ roadmap is ambitious, involving the establishment of a comprehensive digital ecosystem that expands its service portfolio, forges strategic alliances, and nurtures open innovation. The aim is to deliver an integrated suite of digital services seamlessly tailored to diverse customer needs, amplifying value and bolstering its competitive edge.

Antonietta exudes confidence that armed with a talented team, a customer-centric approach, and an unwavering commitment to innovation, Proximus is primed to navigate this transformative journey successfully. By embracing software-based solutions, fostering agility, and embracing sustainability, the company is poised to solidify its position as a pioneering tech leader in the ever-evolving digital landscape.

Empowering Women in Tech and Shaping the Future

Antonietta’s remarkable journey in the world of technology has been nothing short of inspiring. Armed with a Master’s Degree in Computer and Automation Engineering, she embarked on a career that took her across four different countries, exposing her to the intricacies of the telecommunications industry from both incumbent and challenger perspectives across Europe.

Her international experience proved invaluable, shaping her understanding of diverse markets, honing strategies to tackle varied business challenges, and equipping her to navigate the complexities of the telecommunications landscape. As she ascended the career ladder, Antonietta assumed pivotal roles such as Group Chief Information Officer and Chief Digital and IT Officer, where she spearheaded the transformation of IT and digital infrastructures at multinational telecom giants. Her influence led these companies toward a future defined by technological innovation and digital prowess.

In recognition of her significant contributions, Antonietta was rightfully honored as the “Telecom Woman of the Year” in 2022. This title stands as a testament to her influence and impact as a female leader in the tech industry, inspiring women to recognize their potential and aspirations. Her excellence in executive leadership and ability to drive substantial change was further acknowledged when she received the “CXO of the Year” award in 2021.

Antonietta’s sense of accomplishment stems from the transformation she orchestrated within the telecom industry. Guiding the shift from traditional telecom paradigms to a digital and technology-driven landscape, she played an instrumental role in reshaping the industry’s trajectory. Her impact, however, extends beyond her professional achievements; it radiates through her commitment to mentorship and advocacy for women in tech.

Antonietta’s journey is interwoven with her dedication to mentorship, recognizing the importance of female representation and support. She invests time and effort in mentoring emerging female talents, sharing her experiences, insights, and lessons learned to guide them on their path in the tech world. Her passion for fostering women’s networks in tech has resulted in a supportive community that thrives on collaboration, idea exchange, and collective growth.

One of Antonietta’s most noteworthy initiatives, “High Tech in High Heels,” is set to launch soon. Going beyond showcasing women’s achievements in tech, this project seeks to illuminate their journeys, challenges, victories, and unique contributions. By doing so, Antonietta aims to inspire more women to explore careers in tech, challenge stereotypes, and overcome biases that hinder their progress.

To Antonietta, “High Tech in High Heels” isn’t just a project; it’s a reflection of her personal and professional journey as a woman in tech. It embodies her unwavering belief that, with the right opportunities and support, women can excel in the tech industry and shape its future. She remains committed to mentoring, inspiring, and advocating for women in tech, steadfast in her conviction that gender diversity fuels innovation and progress. Antonietta’s initiatives serve as a beacon of hope, working to create an inclusive and equitable tech industry where women thrive and lead. As she aptly puts it, “Diversity and inclusion, especially gender diversity, enrich our industry, fostering innovative ideas and better solutions.”

Balancing Brilliance

For Antonietta, striking a harmonious balance between her personal and professional spheres isn’t just a luxury—it’s a cornerstone of her success. With a career that demands unwavering dedication, she has masterfully woven the fabric of her life, ensuring that her passions and well-being thrive alongside her professional pursuits.

Amidst the fast-paced world of technology and leadership, Antonietta has discovered the art of setting boundaries. These boundaries, meticulously crafted, empower her to immerse herself fully in her role while nurturing her personal passions. One such passion is her profound love for art, which she has manifested through writing an art book and curating a collection of over 200 paintings. Through the realm of creativity, she discovers solace, inspiration, and a chance to unwind from the rigors of her career.

Physical well-being is another realm that Antonietta embraces wholeheartedly. Engaging in sports provides her with an outlet to disconnect from the demands of her professional life and unwind after a long day. Kicking off her mornings with a refreshing walk to the office, she clears her mind, readies herself for the day’s challenges, and embarks on her journey with a sense of clarity and purpose.

 Navigating her role involves a diverse array of tasks, from strategic decision-making to fostering connections with her team and partners. Recognizing the importance of mental clarity and ineffective leadership, she gracefully incorporates regular breaks into her routine. As the sun sets, her evenings become a canvas for fulfillment as she indulges in her hobbies—be it reveling in her art collection, engaging in writing, or enjoying a spirited game of sports.

A resolute optimist, Antonietta’s approach to challenges exemplifies her philosophy of embracing opportunities for growth. Even in the face of adversity, her unyielding positivity shines through, serving as a beacon of motivation not only for herself but also for her team.

Antonietta’s commitment to continuous growth is a testament to her insatiable hunger for knowledge. Each new experience is an invitation to expand her horizons, challenge her preconceptions, and elevate her leadership prowess. In the ever-evolving landscape of technology, she remains steadfast in her quest to stay abreast of changes, consistently infusing fresh insights into her leadership philosophy.

 Antonietta’s wisdom and experiences distill a powerful message for aspiring businesswomen:

  • Master your craft and cultivate unshakable self-belief. The path may be strewn with obstacles, but with resilience and conviction, you can surmount them. Remember, your unique perspective is a gift that propels the future of business.


  • Embrace curiosity and lifelong learning. The world is a tapestry of rapid change, and your commitment to growth is your key to staying ahead. Don’t hesitate to seek knowledge, voice your questions, and share your ideas. Your voice is your instrument; let it resonate.


  • Nurture your self-belief. While doubt may attempt to cast a shadow, remember that your potential is limitless. Clarity of purpose and unwavering resolve are your guiding stars. Persistence is the compass that charts your journey to success.


  • You’re never alone on this path. A vast network of women have walked the same road, surmounted similar challenges, and emerged stronger. Reach out, connect, and harness the collective power to drive change. Your capacity to make a difference is boundless.

Antonietta’s journey is an embodiment of empowerment and a testament to the art of finding equilibrium in a demanding world. As her words echo, “Your potential is immense.”