The Biggest Barriers Facing Women in Tech Today

This content material was created by Girlboss, in partnership with Northwestern University.

One of our favourite issues to inform anybody who will pay attention is how sensible, proficient and impressive our Girlboss group is. We know that now we have a cohort of pc science wizards and data expertise masterminds which are altering the world in entrance of our eyes. But being a lady in tech has its personal set of challenges: ladies held solely 26.7 p.c of expertise jobs in 2021, according to data from, a worldwide non-profit that’s on a mission to diversify the tech sector. And there’s many causes for this: the poisonous boys’ membership tradition, and the dearth of flexibility, pay fairness, inclusive hiring, assist for working moms and correct schooling and profession alternatives on the school stage.

Although we are able to’t remedy all of those deep-seeded points in a single day, we hope that it is a good place to start out—with the assistance of you, our Girlboss readers, and some inspiring consultants.

What it’s important to say:

“I’m my own biggest barrier. I feel so often like I suck at my job, I don’t know what I’m doing, and when I’m not feeling confident, I want to hide.”

What now we have to say:

It could be time to return to highschool, that can assist you realign along with your objectives—or perhaps uncover new ones. Northwestern University’s Master of Science in Information Systems program is designed for professionals who search a hands-on, laboratory-based expertise that may broaden and deepen their information of recent and rising IT. You’ll study eight specializations together with Artificial Intelligence, IS Security, and Database and Internet Technologies. And with a versatile curriculum that aligns with a variety of profession objectives and an knowledgeable college of working professionals, this program is ideal for individuals who aspire to be the following technology of IT leaders.

What it’s important to say:

“I work in the tech industry doing finances and I have never felt more disrespected in my life. I’ve been called secretary, been told to do things that have nothing to do with my role and have been entirely silenced anytime I bring up the fact that someone is not doing their job (causing more work for me).”

What now we have to say:

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Amber Hart, president of Women in Technology

“For a long time, I tried to join ‘the club.’ I wore clothes that were dull so I could blend into the sea of black and gray suits. I made myself the note taker at meetings so others would know that I had a purpose for being there. I went out of my way to accommodate others at an incredible and inconvenient cost to myself. But a moment came, after the first time I got fired, that I realized that none of that really mattered. The worst had already happened to me. I got fired from my first real job—a moment that felt embarrassing and enraging. But I was still standing. I bounced back quickly. The world—and my career—had not ended. This emboldened me. From that moment on I brought my most authentic self to everything that I did. Now, what you see is what you get. Instead of trying to fit in, I stand out. Have challenging conversations. Speak truth to power. Don’t be afraid to be you. You will fail. You will be uncomfortable. You might get fired (I did—twice). But I promise that your career, connections and opportunities will also flourish and take you down a path that you never imagined.”

Fact: Northwestern University’s Master of Science in Information Systems program prioritizes flexibility, which is ideal for working moms. You can get your diploma on-line or in-person in the night in Chicago.

What it’s important to say:

“Working in a large organization (in any field) is difficult to move up or to grow. I’ve been trying to get a promotion, and it’s been extremely difficult with the upcoming recession. just keep asking for opportunities (within my paygrade) where I can work and grow my skills.”

What now we have to say:

Lisa G., artistic technologist advisor at The New York Times and CEO and founding father of You Are Tech

“Being a woman in tech requires navigating a complex journey but it is rewarding. Here are some secrets to success for moving up:

Find your community. Find and create a support network around your career aspirations or that you feel fits you best. For example, I am a member of Black Women Talk Tech. It is a community designed to support Black women who are technologists and founders. It is important to be around like-minded individuals as a woman in tech. A strong network can help you grow your career and provide a sense of belonging and empowerment. This journey can feel lonely; it feels great to be around others who can relate to common challenges you may face on your journey within technology. There are many communities that focus around many niches within the tech ecosystem. Find one that aligns with you.

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Find a mentor. The best mentors will be willing to share their experiences and knowledge with you in an effort to help guide and support your growth. There are also platforms and resources that take the self-help approach with navigating your career with the support of programs and resources. I have created a platform called You Are Tech that helps individuals navigate their journey within tech. We have authored a journal that helps you with your career trajectory to help you achieve the career of your dreams within the tech ecosystem.

Speak up. Your voice matters. Do not be afraid to ask for a raise or a promotion if you have done the work, know your worth. When asking for promotions or an increase in salary, be sure to present your projects and success metrics to your management, therefore your work is highlighted. When working on new projects for work be sure to speak up and use your voice as well to produce thought-provoking ideas.

Be resilient. Resiliency means being able to get through rough patches without giving up on yourself or your goals; it means knowing when something needs fixing even though most people around you don’t see it yet; it means recognizing when things need changing even though everyone else seems happy with how things are now; and creating something better than what currently exists today. The tech industry is full of exciting opportunities, but it’s also a challenging place to work. There’s no doubt that the current job market has created a high level of competition, and that can make it hard to find work you love. Resilience is adapting a growth mindset and setting realistic expectations.”

Fact: Northwestern University’s Master of Science in Information Systems program emphasizes the efficient management strategies and communication abilities essential to steer built-in tasks and implement change administration and innovation. Students construct abilities and a powerful community by studying from knowledgeable college of main information science consultants.

What it’s important to say:

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“My biggest barrier is not having enough women on my team. In tech, there is a gender disparity where not enough women are in engineering roles, and tech in general lacks representation. It’s isolating being on a team of all men and even the most aggressive diversity and inclusion initiatives aren’t tackling the bigger problem: lack of women in STEM.”

What now we have to say:

Susan Lang, CEO of XIL Health

“The tech industry does in fact have a disparity issue in terms of pay, promotions and inclusion. For many years, I was the only woman on my team. In my experience, it is critical you work for a supportive boss. If you don’t have one, I suggest moving on either within or outside of the company. Don’t stay if you’re in a toxic environment because you will get stuck. It’s also critical to find a mentor who is at least one level above you. Almost all of my mentors were men, but eventually, you’ll become the female mentor that others are looking up to.

One time I was sitting in a board meeting with a group of all men senior executives and all men board members, and they were talking about baseball in New York, and I don’t know anything about baseball in New York, so I stepped away from the group. Then, one of the older board members came up to me and said, ‘Susan, what are you doing?’ I said, ‘I don’t know anything about baseball.’ He said, ‘They don’t know anything about this either! Get back in there, stay in the conversation and don’t assume your voice doesn’t matter.’ It was just a great lesson to learn that once you get a seat at the table, you stay at the table. You don’t back away because you’re uncomfortable. You have to be continuously uncomfortable.”

Fact: Northwestern University’s Master of Science in Information Systems program connects you with a various group and knowledgeable college of skilled ladies leaders who’re working in tech.

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