There are lots of articles by women and men talking about what it takes to get more women into tech and keep more women in tech. One of the ideas that I read about today was around making the tech space and startup space less intimidating to women. I wonder how many women feel intimidated by the tech space because of how many men are there?
I don't feel intimidated by men as a woman working in tech and I don't think my colleagues who are women feel that way either. I personally think that the tech space is a great thing for keeping women confident and allowing women to shine and show their confidence.
We are all just people and you should see a man and a woman as that, as people. A person, whether a man or a woman has the ability to be confident or unconfident in what they do. People have the ability to succeed if they want to. Men are naturally seen as more outgoing and more confident but I don't think that means that women need to be scared or intimidated by that. There are men in all kinds of industries, not just tech and startups. So why the emphasis on women feeling intimidated or left out just in the tech space. We should rather make an emphasis on the confidence of women as they grow up and enter the business world. Tech to me has been a great place to help me shine and to help grow my confidence.
This seems like more of an overarching debate about women's confidence level in general. We need to work on making young girls more confident in their selves so that when they grow up they are not scared off by career paths where there are statiscally more men in that space. That would also mean more women in those fields because they won't be so intimidated.
Did anyone see the video that came out about "What it means to run like a girl?" Watch this video and then we can continue on to the reasons why being a woman surrounded by men is not a bad thing. Women are awesome. Women are smart. Women are needed in tech. Women can make the world a better place so stop being scared and start being yourself. Stand up for yourself. Have ideas and make them known. If we as women sit back and stay quiet or just do "jobs" that people think women should do then things won't change. Put yourself out of your comfort zone and start to realize that you are needed as a woman in tech. Women have different perspectives and those perspectives are wanted by men and women alike.
Reason number 1: We are women and that is not a bad thing.
We are different than men by nature. Just like the video says above...being a girl or a woman is not a bad thing. It is an amazing thing. You are you and you should be yourself. Men actually like women who are more themselves than not their selves. Whatever "yourself' is, be that person. Don't think that you have to change yourself to work as a woman in tech. Companies want diversity and they want women with different perspectives and outlooks that men just don't have. Don't change yourself just because you are a "girl" or because you are a "woman." Be yourself and people will like you for that. The amazing thing about business is that the people who do the best in their jobs are the ones who act like their true selves. Don't act like someone else. Don't try to be like a man. Don't feel intimidated that you aren't like your male colleagues. That is okay because you are not a man, you are a woman and men and women are different.
Reason number 2: "Run" like a girl doesn't have to mean not winning the race.
Why is being a woman or a girl something that is seen as sissy or worse. We as women need to keep that confidence that we had as little girls. Women need to remember that as women we aren't worse than men in the same job. Women can do just as much as men can do. Last year at HubSpot I hit or exceeded quota every single month, for one year. The 2 people who I was compared to were men. I am strong too, I am not weak and I can do just as good as those 2 men could. It doesn't matter how you get there. You are a woman so you will do things differently than men but that doesn't mean that you cannot outperform other people (men) around you. I will do things the way I do them (in a womanly way) but that doesn't mean that I won't win. #likeagirl Embrace being a woman and win like a woman.
We as women working in tech need to change what it means to be a women working in tech. You should not be intimidated by the men around you. They are just people just like you are. All people have the opportunity to be amazing. Whether you take the road to be awesome and successful is up to you.
If we want more women in tech then we as women working in tech need to start being more confident and talking about the awesome things that we are doing. We also need to get men to talk about why having women in tech is a good thing. There are a lot of women talking about why being women in tech is great but what about a man's perspective. Any men out there want to give their ideas on why having women next to them day to day is a good thing for their career and for their company?