Despite the fact that the tech industry seems to be dominated by the male category, some female folks are defying all odds by standing tall, shoulder-to-shoulder in the industry with their male counterparts. This is not without its challenges. However, some are still soaring high!
The challenges faced as a female techie can be so overbearing at times that one might think that the tech industry wasn’t meant for females to work in.
Let’s take a peek into some of the challenges they face.
Inequality and male discrimination
What makes the male techies think the tech industry is for them to own? There is obviously no level playing field and that has engendered the misconception and the way male techies treat female techies. I spoke to a female techie who explained her embittered experience with her male colleague.
“I have once been embarrassed by a male techie who was trying to catch up with some new concepts I was learning”, she said, “he insinuated that if I as a woman could learn it, it shouldn’t be that hard for him to grasp either”.
Comments like this are provocative and should not be used by male techies. If as a male techie, you are worried a female techie would get your job, it’s better you work harder.
Inequality has been a lifelong battle as policies and systems were not put in place from time immemorial. But with the recent increase in female techies doing exploits in Africa, the industry should begin to reconsider its stance to favour female folks.
Regardless of gender, anyone should be able to do their work without any hindrance or confrontation. Business owners and managers should set a strong tone for all those working under them to respect all workers and treat everyone working under them fairly. This would give females techies a sense of belonging.
The responsibilities of a female techie can be enormous compared to her male counterparts. There are a whole lot of things that make up a lady and “needs” to be taken into consideration.
A popular developer in Nigeria gave her account. “Starting out was a bit difficult”, she said, “I had to cut my hair as I was the type that usually made my hair by myself most times. At a point, I had to go for dreads; there just wasn’t enough time to care for myself, make up like I wanted”.
Priorities begin to take a toll on you as you get older and more responsibilities begin to come your way. This has been a major challenge for female techies, they have to battle many things to stay focused on work.
There seems to be a stigma when female techies apply for tech jobs, owing to the assumption that they come with a whole lot of baggage (tantrums, time management, peripheral things and so on) but this doesn’t classify all female techies and I think they should be given a chance to prove themselves.
There is the notion that the tech industry is not lucrative for females but things are beginning to change as we now even have women doing great things in the tech industry. Companies shouldn’t be biased as to what gender to work for them.
There have been a lot of initiatives encouraging young females to embrace tech and the results have been overwhelming. So if you are a budding female techie there is no cause for alarm, you will surely get a job if you are good at what you do.
In conclusion, female techies can overcome the challenges they face right now by focusing on their skills and staying current with industry trends. Still, cultural norms need to change in employment, family and educational system to eradicate the problem of gender discrimination so every female techie can feel confident, supported and safe as they pursue their dreams.
What are some other challenges you face as a female techie, especially in this part of the world? Please share with us in the comments section below.