Software Developer NETFORMIC GmbH & Author
What is it like to work as a woman in a male domain?
People I know often ask me what it’s like to work in an IT profession, because the proportion of men is much higher both in the company and at vocational school. I always have to think about it myself first. In the end, I find there are really no differences. To this day, there has also never been a time when I have felt treated differently because of my gender. Apart from when the teacher at the vocational school once again calls my classmate and me with the saying “And what do the women say about that”…
What are the prerequisites for a woman to learn an IT profession?
Basically, all the requirements of everyone else. First and foremost, it is important to have fun with programming, and ideally also to have suitable previous knowledge. For me it was knowledge in HTML, CSS and SQL. If you have a job ad in mind and it mentions programming languages you haven’t really dealt with yet, I recommend to have a look at them and try out tutorials for example. That’s because previous knowledge is also the best proof of your interest in a profession in the IT sector. With personal requirements, team spirit is very important, as you rarely carry out projects alone. Above all, women must not lack the courage to contribute their opinions and suggestions, even in a group that is largely made up of men.
What culture does the company need to offer to make you feel comfortable as a “Woman in Tech”?
Personally, the open contact with my colleague, who was there from the very beginning, helped me to feel at home very quickly. It also made it easier for me to make the transition from school to training and the associated entry into working life. I was told right at the beginning that I should not hesitate to ask questions as soon as I had them. As far as making mistakes is concerned, it was also clearly communicated to me that it is something quite natural and, above all, simply part of training. As a result, questions like “Does this even make sense to ask?” didn’t even cross my mind in the first place.
How to get started as a woman
What would be the benefits of increasing the proportion of women in IT?
I would be happy if the percentage of women would increase, so that prejudices like “women and technology” would disappear, because that is only a question of personal interests. Likewise, I think it would also motivate women who are more shy and think that they would feel uncomfortable in an environment that consists of more men than women to take the step into an IT profession. Often women have different ways of thinking than men, which results in different approaches to solutions or completely new ideas, from which everyone could certainly benefit.