15 Women In Tech Share Advice And Encouragement For Those Following In Their Footsteps Like many other industries, companies in the tech field have made public commitments to diversity, equity and inclusion. While strides have certainly been made, especially in closing the gender gap, there’s still plenty of room for improvement.

Women who are looking to enter this still male-dominated industry should be armed with the skills and confidence needed to get ahead. To help, 15 women from Forbes Technology Council offered some advice based on the experience they’ve gained throughout their own successful careers. From practical tips such as finding a mentor to words of encouragement for future strong women quotes -in-tech leaders, here’s what this panel had to say.

Members of Forbes Technology Council share advice and encouragement for women entering the tech field.

Photos courtesy of the individual members. 1. Be Confident In Your Skill Set

Be confident in the skills you have developed through your past experiences, and be prepared to speak to how they are applicable within the technology industry. So often, women feel they are underqualified or that they lack enough knowledge to enter the field. In reality, when you’re looking for work, what you know matters much less than your confidence in your ability to learn once you get your foot in the door. - Merav Yuravlivker, Data Society

2. Prioritize Building Your Network

As women and minorities in the tech industry, we have to prioritize building our networks. Identify a senior leader you’d like to work with or learn from, see if they own any projects that you can support, then raise your hand to take on a leadership role. This will demonstrate your versatility and work ethic to someone who can help ensure your name is top of mind for future opportunities. - Ana Pinczuk, Anaplan

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3. Don’t Make Assumptions

Don’t assume you’ll be treated differently; don’t assume you’ll be treated poorly. Being on the defense creates an unspoken but palpable contention that others feel. If you’re expecting a fight, you’ll subconsciously look for a fight, and you’re sure to find one. Be authentic, give people the benefit of the doubt and you’ll find you’ll be met with respect and encouragement from all groups. - Jennifer Minella, Carolina Advanced Digital

4. Embrace What Makes You Different

Show up as yourself every time. Conformity is an overrated virtue. In the end, it’s your core differentiators that add value to any interaction, relationship or transaction, making you indispensable and giving you self love quotes long-term leverage. Consider transforming your differences into unique assets and then amplifying them consistently and intentionally. - Olga V. Mack, Parley Pro

5. Remember That Your Contributions Matter

When you are one of just a few people like you at a table (or the only one), use your voice. It matters. Your opinion matters, your questions are important and both will likely enrich the conversation. Find your tribe of trusted colleagues, mentors or sponsors. Having the support of others is helpful in many ways, but a key one is to help you with quelling any self-doubt and sustaining your confidence. - Laurie McGraw, AMA

6. Use Your Voice

You do not need to be loud to be heard. Speak your truth and be mindful of others. A well-thought-out idea or strategy that is presented with strength and integrity will raise your visibility and profile in a positive light. Collaborate wisely with those who share your vision. Whether you’re a leader or part of a team, there is always more strength in numbers. - Saryu Nayyar, Gurucul

7. Learn From Failure

The fact you decided to show up is enough to prove to yourself that you have what it takes. It’s like the game of Chutes and Ladders: You’ll climb, but be prepared to slide down as well. And remember, the finish line will come. Value yourself. Find your mentor—read about them, and follow their failures more than their successes, as that’s where the lessons lie. - Bhavna Juneja, Infinity, a Stamford Technology Company

8. Look For Positivity

Keep a positive mindset, and believe that your talent will be recognized and rewarded fairly. Be confident and speak up with your ideas and your creativity to the forefront. If that does not work, assess your corporate environment and your manager, who will be your champion throughout your career progression. Find the best place to support you in your aspirations, and leave the ones that will hold you back. - Juliette Rizkallah, A Cloud Guru

9. Seek Out A Sponsor

Young women in tech need a sponsor within their company. The sponsor works behind the scenes to identify new opportunities, navigate politics and elevate the visibility of the woman being sponsored. The first step is to approach an executive who’s one step above your current position. Discuss your commitment and aspirations for the company. Informal, short meetings over a cup of coffee work best. - Susan Lang, XIL Health, LLC

10. Speak Up For Yourself And Other Women

Ask for what you want, and believe you are worth it. I am surprised at how many women never ask for anything from their employers. They take the first offer, accept not being heard and don’t negotiate raises. Also, be willing to promote, reward and highlight other women in your network. Always give a hand up. - Laureen Knudsen, Broadcom

11. Collaborate With A Diverse Network

Build a network of people who think differently than you and collaborate with them. Everyone in your network will have an impact on you, directly or indirectly—especially if they have a different perspective than you. Just because you have a good answer, it doesn’t mean it’s the best answer. Diverse minds collaborating on the same complex issue lead to better solutions. - Cindy Jaudon, IFS

12. Commit To Continual Iteration

Focus on your foundational skills and confidence building, and commit to perpetual betterment. Just like tech, the best person for the job is one who wholeheartedly believes in iteration. It’s not about chasing what’s next or never feeling a sense of achievement. Living life in beta mode is about acknowledging your strengths and the value you deliver while keeping a pulse on opportunities to improve. - Shaheen Yazdani, Intercept

13. Don’t Be Afraid To Stretch Yourself

Many of us have passed on an opportunity if we didn’t meet all of the required skills. Men often decide to go for it anyway; often, women don’t. Become fearless in your career aspirations. Apply if you meet many of the skills. While it can be scary to feel unprepared, trust yourself to do the work, learn on the job and figure it out. It may be different than you pictured, but you’ll learn from it. - Kelly Feist, Ascom

14. Support And Encourage Other Viewpoints

Diversity, equity and inclusion are only parts of the puzzle. Optimal cultures are driven by continuous support and encouragement of diverse viewpoints. I don’t see the rules of engagement as being any different from other new endeavors. Look for opportunities you are comfortable tackling, build relationships and allies within the organization, and always start on positive ground. - Mihaela Mazzenga, Valtech

15. Double-Check Your Perceptions

Some advice I have is that your perception of a situation does not necessarily match that of others; how you see things is more a reflection of you. If you feel that everyone around you is out to get you, take a step back and think about why. Aim to be a person who enjoys working cohesively with whatever team you’re on and who the rest of the team enjoys working with, too. That’s how inclusion will stick. - Heather Wilde, ROCeteer


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Last-modified: 2021-10-18 (月) 22:57:21 (6d)