Although the tech industry is still further behind in achieving gender equality compared to others, recent reports show that more women are rising to leadership positions.
Harvard Law School’s US Board Diversity Trends 2019 found that 45% of newly elected directors across S&P 500 companies were female, reaching a new record high. This is not to say that gender diversity isn’t still an issue. We are still far from truly fixing the “broken rung” — but these numbers suggest we’re headed in the right direction.
In honor of International Women’s Day, I thought it would be fitting to interview our own team of women who are breaking barriers every day. Read on to get their perspective to this big question:
MaryLauran Hall, Senior Product Manager
“Once you achieve a position or get an opportunity you’ve been striving for, seek out ways to make it easier for the person after you. Given the power you have, what changes can you make to unlock this kind of achievement for others? It could be small — like changing the way you talk about something — or big — like creating a program or changing criteria for entry. Especially if you worked hard to get there, you are in a unique position to see potential barriers for others and notice opportunities to alleviate those.”
Lizzie Pell, Account Executive
“The tech industry is constantly evolving, so be prepared to be a sponge and soak up new knowledge each day in order to keep up and expand your skill set. It's awesome to be part of an industry that requires lifelong learning, as the skills you gain from it are incredible!”
Gessika Kabeya, Technical Engineer
“Get the basics in the knowledge of tech then go for it. Use the opportunities available to you to your advantage and don’t feel threatened by tech being a ‘man’s job’”.
Tiffany Hsu, Enterprise Account Manager
“Understand that it is still an uphill battle for women in tech. You will run into bias and decisions that don't always make sense, but don't be afraid to speak up and voice your opinion. Sometimes a catalyst for change can be as simple as normalizing our presence.”
Joanna Marion, Operations Manager
“Tech is a great space for growth, creativity, and individuality. Your skills and knowledge will speak for themselves so do not feel intimidated entering and excelling in the tech industry!”
Jane O’Hara, Product Marketing Manager
“I would encourage every woman considering a career in tech to go for it. Whether it's the first step on your career path or you're a seasoned pro from another industry, don't let the ‘tech bros’ fool or discourage you! It's well worth looking beyond the negative, outdated stereotypes. Your insights and perspectives are highly valuable — and will be welcomed.”
And my advice?
Imposter syndrome is a constant battle for many of us, including myself. But what I’ve come to realize is that in this field, everyone is constantly learning and no one has all of the answers. What really matters is your own growth, giving yourself more credit than you think you deserve, and not being afraid to voice your opinions along the way.
Whether you’re considering joining the tech world or are already thriving in it, I hope this advice is helpful and encouraging. There are so many opportunities within this space and we look forward to working with more women in the coming years!
Anh is a demand gen marketer with a specialized background in paid advertising for the software/tech industry.