Investing in the careers of women in technology pays off. A study from the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) found that companies with women on their executive boards outperformed all-male boards.
In fact, NCWIT found that companies with gender-diverse management tend to improve their return on equity, debt-to-equity ratio, price-to-equity ratio and growth.
Clearly, a diverse workforce isn’t just the morally right thing to do — it’s a great way to get your organization on the path to success.
So, here are four easy tips to create a gender positive workplace that empowers women in technology.
Meeting Behavior to Empower Women in Technology
Remember to recognize the good work and ideas of everyone in a meeting.
This is particularly important when a point is made that isn’t recognized by everyone present.
The best way to do this is to make sure everyone has a fair chance to speak their mind uninterrupted.
I’m not saying to pass a conch around. But you should create fair ways to determine a speaking order. Rolling a 20-sided die might be fun.
Management Behavior to Empower Women in Technology
The best way to help employees improve is to offer them clear and actionable feedback.
Be critical, supportive and helpful with your feedback. Make sure the employee knows what to improve, how to improve it and that goals are realistic.
A good manager also cares about their employee’s well-being. So, don’t be afraid to check in on someone if you think something is wrong. Just remember to respect boundaries.
Also, remember that networking is the key to business. Make sure your management team is acquainted with the diverse pool of people you are hiring.
If the management team knows a diverse group of people, then the corporate ladder will hopefully become more diverse through osmosis. As NCWIT’s study says, this diverse management team will likely reflect in improved performance overall.
Standards and Evidence-Based Decisions Empower Women in Technology
Therefore, business decisions and operations should be made based on clear standards and evidence.
Processes for office upkeep, promotions and decision-making can all be standardized so that everyone understands the rules and knows them to be fair.
Sometimes, these standards will call for a subjective value to be used where measurement is impossible. Say a number out of one hundred that represents synergy between two departments.
In this case, work with everyone involved and affected by the number to ensure this value is fair.
How Company Culture Affects Women in Technology
We all need to foster a workplace where everyone is on the team and everyone is acknowledged for their success.
But we also need to call out bad behavior. Speak up when you hear talk that isn’t respectful or professional.
Even if the person being talked about isn’t around — speak up. Behaviors exhibited in private tend to eventually be shown publicly.
Finally, fun activities have a positive effect on office behavior. Make sure to include, or invite, all employees to these activities.
When you work with friends you trust, respect, support and enjoy, it’s amazing how quickly comradery grows and a gender positive workplace is established.
To join ANSYS’ diverse team, check out our career opportunities.