Women make up more than half the total workforce, yet only 25% work in the tech industry—this is despite the fact that the growth of STEM jobs has outpaced the growth of overall employment in the United States.
Research also shows that the lack of women in leadership roles has long-term consequences across every industry, and negatively impacts business outcomes, work cultures and levels of innovation required for greater financial performance.
This doesn’t add up.
Women across all industries bring valuable skill sets to their teams, leading them to success and driving innovation. Their journeys should be supported by peers and partners, their efforts should be applauded and uplifted, and their successes should be regularly celebrated. At Brightspot, this has always been core to our beliefs.
What has your path been to your career in technology?
My work has always lived at the intersection of technology and content. I’m a lifelong storyteller with a 20-year career in journalism before stepping into the corporate world six years ago. I’m still wired to discover and create emotional, meaningful stories with the hope that they’ll change the way someone thinks about the world around them.
That passion is only possible with technology. Technology continues to evolve and provide new ways for anyone to shed light on the darkness, expose wrongdoings and inspire others. Unfortunately, anyone can also deceive, exploit and use technology like a sniper to target and bully others. I’ve always viewed access to technology, and how I use it, as a responsibility—whether running a personal blog or podcast, a corporate website or social channels, or experimenting with TikTok (yes, I know I shouldn’t part my hair on the side) and Clubhouse for fun. I’m dedicated to finding ways to combine technology and content as a force for good.
What are you most excited about for the future of technology?
I’m excited and optimistic about the growing number of women and people of color who are in high-visibility leadership roles. I see the pathways Amazon is creating to help those who are underrepresented learn tech skills and some of the ways we’re supporting communities around the world include making sure more young people learn about STEM and computer science through Amazon Future Engineer.
I’m also surrounded by incredibly smart women in tech who are solving huge problems, such as figuring out how to use Amazon logistics to deliver 12 million meals during the COVID-19 pandemic. I want to continue mentoring other women and sharing great ideas across companies, again as we all share the responsibility of ensuring the best future for those creating and benefiting from technology.
What advice would you give to anyone considering a career in the tech industry?
Embrace change and ambiguity. Although I’ve always admired people who held one job or career for decades, that’s not me. I love change. Fortunately, at Amazon, we are constantly evolving as we push ourselves and innovate for customers, employees, and its communities. For some, the pace of change is exciting, for others it’s unnerving. Learn to enjoy each moment of your career, whether it’s in technology or another field, and always be open to new possibilities.
What do you wish you had known?
I wish I’d known failure is a good thing. I spent most of the early years of my career, and life for that matter, trying to be “perfect.” Looking back on my career path from journalism, a few job side steps along the way and now my corporate roles, I’ve discovered I learned a lot more from failure and mistakes than I did from success. Things that didn’t work out forced me to find a new strategy, think bigger, think bolder and ultimately led me to a better place.
4 more inspiring women in tech who go above and beyond
We asked our own influential women in tech at Brightspot who came to mind in the industry for going above and beyond what their job responsibilities are to inspire and make a difference in their workplaces—and in their communities. Here are a few who standout:
Image credit: By NASA/Bill Ingalls (Flickr)
The future of women in tech
Brightspot believes in the importance of closing the gender gap and giving women the opportunity to lead, thrive and continue inspiring those around them. The list above is just a handful of the many inspiring leaders paving the way for women in tech today.
Join us at 1:00 pm ET on February 25th for a live webinar on ‘The Future of Women in Tech: Exceeding Expectations and Inspiring Change.’ You’ll hear from three Brightspot panelists as they share their stories across different roles and stages of their careers to give advice for current and future generations of women in the tech industry.