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Recap: Girls in Tech Event – SF

Roping in a guest blogger for today: @schlegelsteph recently attended the Girls in Tech Event FEMME Power Roundup  in San Francisco. Below is her take of the meeting. Great stuff here for everyone to walk away with:

On Tuesday April 29th, I attended the Girls in Tech event. The event was a round table discussion that brought together female company founders, CEOs and CTOs to discuss the trials and tribulations of starting and/or running a company. The panelists included: Moderator: Sue Kwon of CBS5, Aubrey Sabala of Digg, Rebecca Weeks of RealGirlsMedia, Vanessa Camones of TheMixAgency, Kaamna Dhawan of Skewz.com, Eve Phillips of Chirp Interactive, Jeanine LeFlore of LiveHit, Mary Hodder of Dabble, Jory Des Jardins of Blogher, Layne Gray of Vivanista, Sarah Lacy of BusinessWeek/Yahoo! Tech Ticker, Rebecca Parsons of ThoughtWorks and Sasha Cagen of StyleMob/GLAM.com.

Before the event began, there was a meet and greet period and I met Kimberly Schwede, a graphic designer just starting her own business. We had a great chat about the challenges and fears of starting a business. She’s been in business for one month and is a member of “Ladies who Launch,” a group for women who start their own companies. Kim is good friends with Shoshana Deutschkron, the PR manager at Tealeaf and a good friend of mine is an engineer at Tealeaf. Tealeaf provides CRM solutions for a variety of industries including Financial Services and Retail. 

I also met Adriana Gascoigne of Ogilvy Public Relations. She is the organizer and creator of the event. In addition, I met Jory Des Jardins, co-founder and president of Blogher.com. Jory and I had a great chat and she is looking forward to being kept in the loop about what is going on with the local office and clients. We’re planning to get together this week.  Lastly, I met Sue Kwon, business and tech reporter for CBS5. She is open to hear about women in technology.

The round table discussion revolved around the challenges of women in the technology business. Many of the women on the panel have worked in other fields, such as law, and technology was one of the worst offenders when it comes to women receiving different treatment than men. There was also a lot of chat around how women present themselves and have difficulty asking for money (from pay raises to VC funding). The panelists stressed the need for women to get over that and make sure to ask for what you deserve.  Another topic of conversation was around the value of networking and getting to know as many people as possible, regardless of industry or position. Although networking can be hard, the value of having those contacts is immeasurable.

Below are the three key takeaways from the event:

  • You never know where people will end up in 6 month so network, network, and network.
  • Find a mentor: Find a person who has accomplished what you want to accomplish and create a mentor/mentorship opportunity.
  • Know what you’re good at but know what you’re bad at. Knowing this information will allow you to play up your strengths and partner with people that excel at the things you struggle at. This creates a situation where you and those around you are set up to succeed.

Let me know if you have any questions!


Great stuff! Again, super jealous that these opportunities are few and far between in good ‘ol Texas. But at least the lessons are applicable to any location and/or situation!




One Response

  1. These are great takeaways! I would also advise women to get past thinking they are not quite qualified or “that you have to learn everything in order to be qualified for a particular job. If you have the ability to learn and can learn on the fly, you can do almost any job.

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