As I was searching the web for interesting and informative articles on the subject of women in technology I was overwhelmed with the continued distressing statistics.
Women are practically non-existent in technology fields and yet when they are represented and supported, they outperform their male counterparts. So why the disconnect?
In an article about investments in startups that are women-led, the numbers are even more appalling. Only 7% of investor money goes to women-led startups if you can believe it.
That is why I am happy to share with you an initiative that is turning the times. Women Who Tech has offers a Challenge for Women in Technology with startup business ideas. The initial competition is complete but now comes the time when the top contenders are fighting for the top honor and $50,000 in cash for their business idea.
180 women in technology have risen to the challenge and as part of the competition have appealed to the masses and raised a total of $365,000 toward their startup ideas!
Click here to learn more about the 180 different business ideas being championed by women in tech. The businesses range from baking to pets, product to service, finance, and technology.
The business that raised the most — in fact, 16% more than they set out to raise — is called PeerSpring:
How do we ensure our kids have the best possible future? Some people say it’s about helping them “stand out” through the mastery of a unique life-skill. Others believe it’s about “making the grade” in school. In fact, qualities like grit, leadership, empathy, adaptability and curiosity are the real building blocks for a happy life — but these are skills that can’t be “taught,” they have to be mastered through life experience.
That’s why we built PeerSpring — a civic-tech educational platform that helps students understand, apply and master core skills through the practice of good citizenship and passion based learning.
Supporting women in technology with their startup business ideas is taking one step closer to finding a more diverse community in the STEM fields.
Forbes contributor, Kathy Caprino, conducted a wonderful interview with Angie Ruan, Head of PayPal Retails engineering team. Angie shared some of the keys ways to we can support women in technology and offers her advice for women striving to become leaders in their field.
Here’s what she had to say when asked what helped guide her to success:
- Mentors, coaches, and women-helping-women channels
- Taking risks and tenaciously seeking fun opportunities
- Leveraging being a woman in tech
She added that her belief in Karma has been a guiding influence: “How can I help you?” is the question always in the back of my mind during my one-on-one mentor sessions and in my daily interactions. The desire I have to help people is always going to bolster me in the long run.
The interview is well worth the read and I suggest you click over to read the interview in detail. However, one of the things I want to point out is the group she mentions that was helpful to her and I found them on LinkedIn called eWIT – eBay Women in Technology. It’s through this group that I learned about the VC Challenge to Support Women In Technology and their startups. So if you are looking for a new LinkedIn group to join, check this one out. Be sure to connect with the 2.5k professional women in the Tech Savvy Women LinkedIn Group while you’re there.
We may have a long way to go to be more representative in the world of technology and STEM fields as well, but the good news is that there are businesses striving to make a difference, organizations shining a spotlight and individuals who are leading the way!
- Start Your Work Day Like an Executive Leader
- Employee Motivation Starts with Great Leadership
- Overcome Fear of Failure and Other Career Blocks
JJ DiGeronimo — the president of Tech Savvy Women — is a speaker, author, and thought leader for women in tech and girls and STEM. Through her work, JJ empowers professional women and consults with senior executives on strategies to retain and attract women in technology to increase thought and leadership diversity within organizations.
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