I was recently interviewed about being a woman in the technology sector, namely challenges I faced getting to where I am and continue to face. This isn’t the first time I’ve had the question; people are fascinated that I’m the director of IT for an advertising and technology company. It wasn’t an easy road, but it wasn’t as hard as people think. I studied hard, worked harder, and continued to move up in positions throughout my career because I proved myself.
My biggest disappointment with the technology sector these days is that there aren’t enough of us in it. By us, I mean women. Many times over the years I was the only female at the table in a room with 10 or more men. It took a while to learn I was there because I earned it and my contributions are important. I was intimidated at first, painfully quiet during discussions. The more meetings I went to, however, the more I realized some things were missing from the conversation and that was my cue.
These days I’m more than comfortable being the only woman at the table, leaning in, learning, and sharing my knowledge. I am grateful I have been in more than one position to pay it forward and hire equally qualified and smart women in the field. The one question I always get asked is what advice would I give girls considering technology as a career. My answer is, “Don’t give up. Stick with it, even when you are singled out or made to feel inferior. It is a predominantly male field, but it won’t always be like that with our brains and determination. Girls, the time is now to start taking over the tech industry!”