ericambaity.comLadies I’m going to give it to you straight. The tech industry is rough. And it takes a strong, driven and dedicated woman to navigate its wrath.

It ain’t for the weak at heart nor the emotionally unstable.

Although every woman’s experience in technology is unique, you have to be prepared to deal with the melodrama you will face.

By no means am I saying just deal with it.  What I’m saying is position yourself properly, recognize the game and study the rules of the playbook.

As a woman in tech or a woman considering entering the field, here are several characteristics that you must shake to quickly earn respect from your peers.

Constantly seeking validation

The tech world has no time for uncertain people.  If a decision needs to be made, make it and deal with the consequences, if any, later. People want answers and their issues resolved quickly.  They don’t want to always hear “let me run it by someone”.

Make the decision.  Be confident about it.  Be ready to explain if necessary and move on.

More concerned of what people think of you than what you think of yourself

If a few team members are talking about you, GOOD!!! People are going to talk.  Let them.  The product of your work and your work ethic will speak for itself and negate the words of others.

Of course we want it all to be positive.  But if you worry about what everyone is saying or how they feel about you, you could be missing out on rewarding opportunities.

You Like A Pity Party

So what you broke the build. You’re not the first and you won’t be the last. No one has time to sit and discuss the ins and outs, whys and hows as to what happened.  You know what went wrong.  Communicate it. Fix it. Now on to the next.  That’s the nature of the profession.

No one is going to stroke your ego to make you feel good about yourself when something is wrong.

You Wear Your Feelings On Your Shoulders

One thing we can all agree on is this is a male dominated field. And most men are not the most sensitive or emotional creatures.

Don’t expect your boss to give you empathy or to give you that emotional stroke you need when you’re down.  That’s what you have a spouse, friends and/or a coach for.

Pay attention to what’s being said and how it’s being stated. Filter out the stuff that’s not to be taken personally.

Constantly Comparing Yourself To Others

Your level of expertise will differ greatly from your peers.   Comparing yourself to someone else will lead you down a path of constant self-doubt and unfulfillment.

In Tech, as in other industries, people come to the table with varying skills and backgrounds.  Worry about where you are.  If you don’t like it, then you know what to do, change it.  Compare and measure yourself against yourself and no one else.

Afraid to Speak Up

Speaking up is very difficult to do if you’re not one to put yourself out there. But in this industry it is vital. Those who sit back quietly miss out.  Sitting in grueling design sessions with people who are passionate about their work can make you want to put your head in a hole when it comes to sharing your thoughts.

Sometimes you will have to forcefully interject.  Just get in. Say what you have to say.  Standing back and waiting to be heard will get you no where but leave you with frustration every time.

One thing I know for certain is you’ve got to have tough skin.  But remember to always demand respect, uphold your dignity and be clear on your values in all situations.

As stated by Oscar Wilde “Success is a science. If you have the conditions, you get the result.”

If this speaks to you and you need help getting over a few of these hurdles, schedule a complimentary coaching session with me to get you on the right track.

Share this:

4 Comments on Ladies Listen, The Tech Industry Ain’t For the Faint At Heart

  1. I would add one more: If a decision, be it business, technical, or whatever doesn’t pass the sanity check, use your outdoor voice. Even if it doesn’t net results, at least you have poked a hole or two, and raised the question.

    There are different ways to address it, but I’m the blunt straight-shooter type. “I disagree with your approach and here’s why…”

  2. Good piece! You’re right about what happens when you break the build, or another problem comes up: the point is to fix the problem, understand what caused it and make sure it doesn’t happen again. Nobody is out to get you just because you made a mistake.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *