In a Room Full of Men
Last week, as I sat in a serious pow-wow of ideas, thought, strategy, process and sales innovation at work, I took a moment to step back and realized oh, I’m the only woman in this room.
I’m pretty used to that.
The thing is, I don’t feel enraged. I respect both genders. I think there’s a lot to learn from everyone. I would love to see more women in tech and online startups, but I also know you can’t force it. And I don’t think it’s someone’s “fault,” especially not the dudes fault.
With probably close to 70 years of experience sitting in this room, the ideas that were swirling were immense. I was learning, we are fine-tuning our process as we build this operation and workflow from scratch around this epic product.
Yes, of course I was heard. They looked to me for answers and resources and my opinion, is respected not to mention, needed.
I am not daunted and I see through gender. I’m also excited that for a typically male role, we’ve hired a UI/UX application designer…and she’s a woman. Want to know something? She was the only female who applied to the position and she was the best fit, without a doubt.
In that pow-wow last week, I do recognize I have the least experience, am the only female and am the youngest in the room but you know what? I also know a lot more about new social innovations because of my generation. More power to me.
Know what you don’t know and know what you do.
What is important is education, encouraging, role models and cultivating but it’s a statistic that there are fewer women than men in tech.
Technology investors Fred Wilson and John Borthwick said the industry needs catalysts to spark a virtuous circle of more successful women-led tech start-ups leading to more women in tech start-ups.
Maybe I’m lucky because I’ve always been respected, both my parents are entrepreneurs and I don’t “notice” that I’m one of the few females in the office (wherever I’ve worked in tech) but you have to lead by example, not complain about it.
I don’t feel singled out at my startup because I’m the only woman. Why should I?
Do something about it. Then be yourself. Always.
Does anyone else experience this equality? Do you feel singled out?
I also love NCWIT – National Center for Women and Information Technology for encouraging women, from a young age to participate and expand into technology roles. Great organization.