In a recent interview in Forbes, author Bonnie Marcus states that “Like many other male dominated industries, the field of technology presents both challenges and opportunities for women today“.
Marcus interviewed influencial women such as Michelle Zatlyn of Cloudflare, Ellen Pack of AppSmitten, and Laney Whicanack of Federated Media Publishing. All three women have made great strides in the tech world thanks to tech innovation and strong business strategies. Of the most interesting responses given, my personal favorite came from Ellen Pack in response to the question, ‘What do women need to know before they enter this field? How do they best prepare?‘
“Women should find their inner geek. The greater your understanding of technology and tech trends, the farther you will go. Being able to get out in front of trends and help companies of any size see how they can leverage technology will make someone a great asset to any company. Read the trade press, keep your skills fresh, and always think of new and better ways things can get done. Your education doesn’t stop when you leave school, it is just beginning and it is your job to create the curriculum every day.” Ellen Pack, Forbes
It’s been observed lately that women have become stronger in tech over the years, and as a result more companies with female founders are cropping up in the industry. Additionally, new programs that support female founders have cropped up such as Plum Alley and Women Innovate Mobile. In a recent post made by Matt Cavnar of Vooktv, this trend was most visible at the latest New York Tech Meetup this past Tuesday July 10. Cavnar addressed this in his post by saying,
“Something else that stood out last night — the presence of strong women. At least a third of the companies that presented had female founders or co-founders. Before the demo started, I saw one hugging her boyfriend. He looked like a band’s quietly cool guitarist. But she was the one on stage, he was the one cheering in the audience. The music scene I knew often felt like a boys’ world. In tech, the stage seems open to anyone smart enough to grab it and take control.” Matt Cavnar, Vooktv via Appguppy
How are some of the ways you can get involved in tech as a woman? If you, like me, have never learned a single line of code, there are a few opportunities that might interest you: website that can get you started are Girls Who Code, Girl Develop It, and Skillcrush. Some offer classes, some offer basic assistance, some offer both.
Some other advice offered in the Forbes article may prove helpful to any women, who after reading this article thinks they might want to give tech a try:
“As a person thinking about working in technology, you will want to:
- Be interested in the underlying product or service that the company provides.
- Like trying new things and be a person that enjoys continually learning.
- Likely live in one of the following cities: Boston, NYC, Austin, Seattle, San Francisco, Beijing or Shanghai. While there are technology companies everywhere, the core of what is being built is based in these geographic locations and you always want to be at a company that is leading in its field.” Michelle Zatlyn, Forbes