I’ve talked about creating an innovation culture and getting curious as the first two keys to attracting women in technology (and keeping them at your company). In this article, I cover key #3: Stay Connected.
Key #3: Stay Connected
If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go with others.
― African Proverb
Staying connected means getting new perspectives by talking to lots of people from varying backgrounds, cultures and belief systems, by visiting new places and by having new experiences that stretch beyond your comfort zone. Staying connected is also demonstrated by the ability to take disparate concepts and create something new.
Women technologists are the minority in the workforce, and they often feel isolated and excluded from influential male-dominated networks. Without strong connections to mastermind networks, women miss opportunities to gain visibility, collaborate with others, learn and advance in their fields. But the answer is not simply to create groups for women, started by women and run by women. While networking groups like that provide value today, more needs to be done. Companies that proactively enable networking, mentoring and establishing communities that include both men and women take an important step toward improving retention rates.
Stay Connected Exercises
(answer these questions)
- Do we encourage networking both within our company and outside?
- Does our physical environment promote or dissuade networking and collaboration?
- Do we change people around, so they work in different jobs and functions (or even different companies through job swapping)? Or do we do a lot of “strategic planning” without talking to anyone?
Read all Four Parts of this Series:
Attracting Women in Tech – Part 1 – Culture of…
Attracting Women in Tech – Part 2 – Get…
Attracting Women in Tech – Part 3 – Stay…
Attracting Women in Tech – Part 4 – Be…
Attracting Women in Tech – Part 5 – How to Pull this off