the rabbit hole runs deep: Why Aren't There More Women [Tech] Entrepreneurs?
so much for new ventures. that's pathetic. for larger companies, it is quite possible that by the time an organization has grown large enough to implement a Sexual Harassment policy, the majority of women who were working their way up the ladder have likely been sexually harassed and/or somehow marginalized for their gender. the HR dept will simply never have seen them because they either switched depts, managers or left the company. i have seen this at every imaginable level at Global 50 companies down to medium-sized businesses. we are in our infancy with regard to establishing equality of opportunity between men and women and of that there can be little doubt (this transcends any particular industry).My guess is that probably only 2-3 out of every hundred pitches I receive are from women. This certainly isn’t anything conscious on my side. It’s just the facts. ~ Mark Suster, Venture Capitalist
i have been "sexually harassed" at work events, industry conferences, client meetings, etc. sometimes it's subtle, sometimes it's outrageous. and introducing alcohol makes it even worse and much of this industry is fueled by booze. fortunately, i have more courage than most men i've ever met, and ever expect to. and as i will not be deterred from my professional goals, i learned to turn that harassment into something else: awareness, which on their part quickly turns into shame, which quickly turns into respect (or at least sufficient intimidation to politely gtfo of my way). this isn't exactly easy for many women to do and every situation requires a different tactic. it must be handled with great care, as bruised egos have far-reaching tendrils. and i am sorry, but running to HR isn't a cure-all for every situation. what are you gonna do when the CEO is hitting on you, run to
ime, navigating sexual dynamics is a necessary survival skill in technology and being a woman practically an occupational hazard. had i a different constitution i might have shunned this industry like so many others.
but if you have fortitude, a stomach for being in the minority, and a supportive organization/manager/mentor, you can count yourself among the early pioneers who consider gender bias but one of many obstacles to be overcome on the path to greatness. and if you survive, you can do incredible things for women along the way.
not the least of which is teaching a group of 6 and 7 year-old girls how to code.
*you're going to become the CEO one day, is the answer. :>