#GeekGirlMeets: The Best Advice from our Women in Tech Interviews (So Far…)
At GeekGirl Meetup UK, we started the #GeekGirlMeets podcast as a way to inspire any woman interested in, or working in, the tech industry. We wanted to show that there is no direct route from A-to-B when it comes to your career, that everyone is continuously learning and confidence can get you a long way.
Everyone is on a journey, and while from the outside someone might seem like they have got their s*** together, sometimes we can take for granted the work it took to get there and that they are still on a path to where they want to be.
What I love about these interviews is that they give you an idea of what is involved in each woman’s specific role, what it is that has inspired them and why they love what they do.
Now we’ve interviewed ten amazing women, we thought it was time to highlight 10 key pieces of advice from each of them.
“Don’t do your time. If you’re capable you should be using your skills.”
We often get told that we have to do our time to earn that next job or earn a promotion. But really, if you have the skills, the know how and the confidence — go for it! That’s the advice Gemma passed along to GeekGirl and we agree. Sometimes the only barrier holding you back is you, conquer that and you have no idea what you could achieve!
“Don’t limit yourself...Anyone who wants to do anything great has to ignore a lot of good advice to get there.”
Be confident and go for it! Sarah echoes something we firmly believe in. The internet has broken down so many barriers to entry for almost every career, and you some times need to ignore what the majority may see as ‘good advice’ and make the leap to what you really want to do.
“Don’t be afraid. Fear gets in the way of everything and not having fear will get you really far. And if you are afraid, find somebody who pushes you to do it. If the seed is there you’re a long way through.”
Rosario’s own story is incredible. Having moved to London from Spain and unable to speak much English, she is a prime example of someone who went for it, built up her confidence and is now the CTO and Co-Founder of Headliner, an early-stage startup (and speaks amazing English). We let fear get in the way, when really we need to be fearless and boss it!
“Surround yourself with like minded people. Find your tribe. Who is the core group of folks that you can lean on, and support.”
At GeekGirl we’re passionate about community, and Kim has done amazing things to always foster growth and support in numerous tech communities in the US and Europe.
Taking the time to find, and then surround yourself, with your tribe can be a very powerful thing, both professionally and personally.
“Immerse yourself in multi-disciplinary people, concepts and ideas. Go for the unknown, unknown.”
One of the smartest women I know, Reshma’s advice is a great addition to Kim’s.
You need to take yourself out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself. Explore the unknown — that way you’ll know where you fit in and you’ll find your tribe.
“Your instincts are usually good. You come with a set of really good premises for what feels right for you and what doesn’t…Your instincts are always where they should be and you should listen to them.”
I really admire Holly. She’s founded Gadgette, a digital tech publication for women, and is quite frankly a troll-slayer, warrior woman. She is one of the strongest people I know, and if following my own gut and instincts could make me as strong as her, then this is winning advice. There is power in instinct. Listen to your gut.
“Focus on what you enjoy…And stay while you’re learning. If you’re not learning, it’s a sign something isn’t right.”
We are all constantly learning. If you find yourself in a role where this has stopped and you feel you’ve hit a wall, challenge yourself and go for the next big role.
Alice reminds us that we need to focus on what we enjoy and that learning should be part of this. Being brave enough to make a change can make a huge difference.
“Do something you love. You’re genuinely not going to be as authentic if your heart isn’t in it. If you believe in what you’re doing and you have a passion for it, that’s infectious.”
We’re not all lucky enough to work in an area we are passionate about. But this isn’t something that happens immediately. Sharon has had a great and varied career and now she loves what she does at Bloom & Wild! It’s never too early or too late to find work you love.
“Find the people that can help you and give them an incredible reason to help you. Network is just the most important thing…Your network is everything.”
Stephanie is still in the pre-launch stages of her sex-tech startup Mystery Vibe and alongside her Co-Founder, Soumyadip, the two of them have learnt the importance of network.
Extending your network and meeting new people can be a game changer for your career or your startup. Always ask questions, be friendly, and never be afraid to ask for help. You’ll be surprised how many people will go out of their way to help you.
“ Great ideas are such a great start but everything in a company is based on execution. The fear that you don’t know anything is fine, all you have to do is start executing and keep executing, and get smart as fast as you can.”
This episode of our podcast was a bit of a GeekGirl inception.
Robyn Exton, one of GeekGirl Meetup UK’s Co-Founders and the Founder of Her — the lesbian app for queer, bisexual and gay women, passed along some advice for anyone building a startup.
But this is great advice for anyone, whether you’re a Founder or not. We believe in getting s**t done. Even if you fail, you keep going. Learn by doing, and get smart. Be a #GirlBoss.