“IT is not for women” – I heard it several times. On the other hand – “We don’t have enough women in IT”. This article will not answer the question – why we don’t have enough women in tech, but it will show you what to expect as a woman when you join IT world and give you sneaky look into my IT life.
What I should expect when I get job in IT?
Ok, here we are. Let’s assume that you are about to start a role as developer or any other strict technical role, we will skip roles in tech companies as HR or Office Managers.
Run away! It is not job for women!
Let’s start with challenges or difficulties based on my own experiences.
It can be difficult and though sometimes and you need to be ready for it
Not all male will respect you and not all male will treat you on the same level. I am lucky enough to not having these situation so often but they still happen.
Jokes around and teases
Sometimes you can feel embarrassed and ashamed because man will point your lack of knowledge about certain topics. When I come back to the beginning of my career, it was not always beautiful. Things obvious for geeks, weren’t obvious for myself. So many times I have heard sarcastic comments which weren’t told to males with the same level of knowledge as mine.
You will have to prove yourself several times to gain respect
Based on my own experiences, woman needs to put much more effort to prove herself. The stereotype about women being useless in IT world still exists.
Sometimes you will be ignored and having difficulties to get promoted
Being successful in IT industry as women is definitely challenge unless you want to stick to developer role forever. I went through long way of proving myself till I achieved management role.
Being women manager can be a big challenge
I faced so many issues as women manager, especially if you work in international company. Some cultures are more close, some more open. Working as women manager for Ukrainian team is quite a challenge, I know it from autopsy. On the other hand, working with Swedish team is much more enjoyable.
No worries, it is not that bad after all!
Let me move to better side of the story. Afterwords it is great to be women in IT, trust me. Moreover, really often comes up that woman have much better skills, necessary in IT, than men.
Working in the environment full of men is a great experiences!
It is definitely my favourite point. No drama, funny atmosphere, straight forward workplace. I love working with guys, I just really enjoying it! Since years I used to hang out with boys or men, a little bit more about it you can read in upcoming article about my background.
Women’s soft skills
Women have soft skills and they are great bridge between tech and business side. It is great advantage to have female in the team.
Women think logically and can see overview of the issue
Women are really often better than another developers as they think logically, can see overview of the project and talk to the client. I have so many examples over my career in e-commerce when male developers are too focused on the certain tasks that they cannot see overview. They don’t think logically, as they too focused on technical part.
Women are much more organised, detail/task-oriented, reliable and hard-working
Working with women in the team can be a great benefit. Again, based on my experiences, we are more detailed, we follow the processes and have great results in optimisation of workflow. I have been working with several women in my career and I can definitely say that they are much more reliable. I always could trust that they delivery tasks on time and with high quality. It wasn’t always the case for males.
And finally, you impress society
It is kind of funny point. I always see disbelief in eyes of my interlocutor when I am saying that I am web-developer and technical manager. I am not going to lie, it is great feeling when you can surprise someone. Additionally, when I say that I was leading projects of known companies like HellyHansen or Agent Provocateur, I manage teams of male developers, train and build teams in Asia and so on. All of is a big surprise.
Women are better than man?
I have to admit, this question doesn’t make any sense. In any industry you can find better women and better man. It is not about gender, it is about person. You will find reliable and task-oriented males and females who doesn’t have any soft skills. I just want to point, that in general, women have great skills which are extremely important in IT and we shouldn’t be afraid to choose this industry as our future.
IT Is NOT For Women? Can women be successful in tech?
And now we are coming back to the beginning. Is IT for women? I don’t know. It is definitely for people with passion, for people who love this industry and challenges. I can honestly say that it is worth any effort if you want this. I was lucky enough to not having so many issues, or I just didn’t treat that as issues, but as challenges and improvements. You shouldn’t be afraid to join IT world, you shouldn’t ask question – Whether I can cope? – just do it. Give it a try and experience. Don’t give up and work hard, take difficult tasks and learn. And at the end of journey, you will find success.
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Zaneta loves challenges so deciding about career path she has chosen typical male industry. Woman who codes. Every 1-2 years she lives in different part of the world. Gym dates is something what she specialised in. Healthy lifestyle, extreme sports and motorbikes have stolen her hear years ago.