The future is not feminine: DIC Tech Talk

Women in technology no longer believe there is a difference in the way they are treated as compared to their male counterparts. Today it is all about one’s skill sets.

Marking International Women’s Day, Dubai Internet City’s Tech Talk panel discussed pertinent challenges of being a woman in the male-dominated tech world and how it has evolved over the years.

Federica Rossi, senior manager, Accenture Communication, Media and Technology, says, “Today there is hardly any difference if you are a man or a woman working in an office environment. Gone are the days when women used to be treated differently. More and more employers understand the different requirements for women and make provisions for it.”

Agreeing, Asma Shabab, portfolio marketing leader, Watson Internet of Things, IBM Middle East, Africa & Turkey, says, “When you are sitting in a KPI meeting, the gender factor goes out of the window. It is only about whether you have achieved your targets and met your job requirements.”

According to Rossi, “the future is not feminine.”

She says, “The future will be a union of both genders working in collaborative ways. Let’s not focus on “us” and “them”.  At the end of the day, it is all about your competence more than your gender.”

The panel also shed light on how women deal with different situations at the workplace.

Shabab says, “There are situations where other colleagues might talk over you but it may not necessarily be because of gender. You just need to make sure that you on the right side of the balance and speaking with conviction.”

“Most cases, it is not a power struggle. It is because of the individual’s personality trait – people are impatient, give them their turn and assert yourself when it is your turn,” says Genny Ghanimeh, CEO and founder, Pi-Slice.

Often when women need to get things done, they are labelled bossy. While being a “good boss” is different from being bossy, according to Dr. Kavita Shukla, assistant vice president, Amity University Dubai, says, “There is nothing wrong with being called bossy. As long as you have a sound working relationship with your colleagues and is result oriented, you are fine.”

Every person has different qualities. Whether that is ‘loud and assertive’ or ‘quiet and timid’, women need to own their personalities and be proud of it, said the panel.

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