The tech field is booming in the United States and everywhere else it seems. There are a ton of benefits of being in such a booming field; the pay rates are great, there is an overwhelming need to fill positions, and there is tons of flexibility. Robin Hauser Reynolds recently explored this very subject on ideas.ted.com. She states in her article, “Women simply aren’t thriving in one of the most promising fields in the United States — and not for lack of talent. And here’s the truth: It’s not solely a problem for women. It’s a problem for men, too. In just five years, there will be a million unfilled computer science–related jobs in the United States, which according to our calculations could amount to a $500 billion opportunity cost.”
Robin states in her article that a big part of women choosing other fields of work besides computer science is the lack of role models. As little girls most of us thought about being a nurse, a doctor, or even a teacher. The reason for that is because we knew a nurse, a doctor or a teacher. Speaking for myself, my mother was a nurse and she was my hero, which was why I grew up wanting to be in the medical field. Did that work out for me? No, but if my mom was a software engineer, I can see myself being interested because she was. Now don’t get me wrong, there are successful females in the tech field, but do you know their names? Probably not, because unless you are the CEO of Facebook (who is a guy), there are no household names of women in the tech field. We are going to change that!
Meet Sheryl Sandberg (COO of Facebook), who is probably the MOST influential woman in tech right now shared with women2.com why women should take a look at the tech field when deciding on a career:
- Flexibility – Sheryl states, “The flexibility offered in our industry is unlike anything I have ever seen. It is commonly accepted to make your own schedule and work from any location. This makes a big difference when you are trying to have a career and a family.”
- Meritocracy – “The tech industry is also often meritocratic – with outcomes being judged by quantifiable results (products launched, product sold, numbers hit, etc.) which is also helpful for women as it removes some of the subjective judgements women can face in the workforce.”
- Confidence – “Studies show that women often underestimate their own abilities, which holds them back from taking on the challenges that help any of us achieve to our potential. Stereotype threat – the phenomenon that if people are aware of a stereotype they are more likely to act in accordance with it – is a real issue for girls in science, math and technology. Girls don’t think they can do well, and therefore they don’t. (This is why girls often do better in these subjects at all-girls schools.) If women believe they can succeed in tech, they will. And so many amazing technical leaders already do.”