Why is ‘Women in Technology' an important issue for you and your company?
After spending more than 20 years in this industry, I have been part of many teams where I have been the only woman, and I want to work in an industry that is more representative of the world around me. The technology industry is exciting and engaging - it's where I feel at home, and other women should feel at home too.
I also believe people are what help drive the success of a company. At N-able, we are at an exciting time in our journey because people throughout our company are recognizing and actively participating in continuing to make N-able a diverse and inclusive place to work. There is also evidence diverse companies see a positive impact on the bottom line, so this is important on all fronts - from both a people and business perspective.
How do you think we can get more women into technology?
Normalize the tech industry and encourage girls and young women to embark in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) careers. We should be breaking down barriers that have been created. We should encourage those who may be interested in these fields, and help girls and women see a scenario where they can pursue a STEM career.
Also, we need to create allies, and include men in discussions around gender equity in the workplace. Male allies can help build an environment where everyone has opportunities to succeed and advance. This is no longer seen as a women's problem but as a collective problem, for men and women, to solve.
What do you think should be done to enable more women to rise through to the more senior roles in the IT sector?
I don't believe there is just one solution for this as each department and company needs to find what will better enable increased female leadership for them.
Across the R&D sector, I would like to see more time devoted to those women who occupy mid-level roles to ensure they receive opportunities to grow further and advance into even more senior leadership roles. Women should be seen as integral team members. Also, I'd like to see the industry do more to tackle unconscious bias - especially with hiring managers who have the decision-making ability to build diverse teams.
Lastly, I think having women role models in leadership roles helps empower other women to visualize a path forward in more senior roles for themselves as well. If you can see other women achieving what you would like to achieve through promotions and leadership roles, you are more likely to realize it's an obtainable goal for yourself.
What's your one piece of advice for younger people looking for a career in the IT sector?
Don't wait for someone to recognise your value. You own your own career path and sometimes that does mean asking for more responsibility, that pay raise, or even that promotion. As women, we tend to downplay our abilities and value. Let your manager know what you want for your career, ask how to get there, and don't let others discourage you. The more you practice owning your career path, the further you will be able to go.