How can women succeed in a career in technology?
Like many male dominated fields, technology offers both challenges and opportunities for women who make it their field of choice.
For professionals early in their career gaining valuable experience is key. While it may be tempting to take the job with the highest salary or the best benefits, the early stages of your professional life could be more effectively spent with a high-performing company where you can gain experience on a range of projects and build a strong contacts network.
Tech is, by nature, a constantly evolving industry, so professionals need to be prepared to adapt quickly.
Kirsten Smith, Director of Business Applications, Robert Walters, comments “Accepting change is good, but embracing change is the quality that successful technology professionals all share. Trying to plan every detail of your career is impossible. Instead, be prepared to make the most of opportunities that present themselves.”
As well as developing technical knowledge of your field, it is also vital to learn the nuts and bolts of how the business operates. Even if these issues don’t fall under your direct responsibilities take opportunities to meet with other teams and departments to develop a well rounded view of the company.
Working in technology will almost inevitably mean working in a male dominated environment. This may feel alienating but it also gives female professionals the chance to make their mark. Being willing to speak up is essential, and developing positive relationships with your colleagues is part of this. Having support from colleagues, particularly senior staff, can make all the difference in ensuring your voice is heard.
Kirsten Smith is Director of Business Applications at Robert Walters and is based in our head office in London.
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