Guro McCrea: “Small changes to our behaviour can have a huge impact on gender equality”

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Each for Equal means that each individual does their part for gender equality. So often we think “somebody should do something about this”, but we as individuals go on as we always have, and then we are surprised when nothing happens.

In an Each for Equal world, we all change our behaviour – whether that is insisting on finding a diverse set of candidates for a crucial role, even if it slows down the recruitment process, or stopping yourself (or others) from interrupting a woman when she is speaking. Small changes to our behaviour can have a huge impact on gender equality, and we can all have an impact.

There are so many opportunities in tech, and that will only continue to grow.

There is the potential to get rich, grow your career, but also to make a difference in the world. We know that a lot of tech is built by men for men, and we need female representation to ensure that tech fits the needs of the whole population, not just half of it. So, don’t be afraid to go into tech – it is exciting, rewarding and also necessary!

I work in tech despite not having a technical background. If I could turn back time, I would have studied engineering or computer sciences, and then built on that with business, strategy and leadership.

I have been with New Relic for only 16 months, and yet with such a fast-growing company I can think of several achievements that I am proud of. In the spirit of the IWD though, I am very proud of the impact I have had on gender diverse hiring at New Relic.

A lot of our roles are quite technical, and we have always struggled to find female candidates for them. However, with the extra focus and some particular initiatives that we have put in place;  my solutions engineering team is now 33% female!

In my last year at university one of my professors said: “When you go out there looking for a job, make sure you join a growing company in a growing industry. As long as there is growth, you will also grow”. I took his advice and have never looked back. And if you compare it to when I started my career, tech is growing even faster now.

In my opinion, there are two core skills that are absolutely necessary to succeed:

Problem-solving skills: The ability to take a problem, divide it into bite-sized chunks, and solve each bite-sized chunk one by one.

Communication skills: The ability to explain something in a simple and compelling manner based on the current understanding and motivation of your audience.

The great thing about coding is that it is becoming easier and easier, and there are lots of apps as well as CoderDojos that young girls can use and attend to learn more.

What I would also add is that there are many roles in tech where you don’t necessarily need to know how to code. So, if you are reading this and you are already halfway through your degree in business, it is still very possible for you to have a fantastic career in tech.

 

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