Tech is a huge and booming industry, but the hard truth about it is that the leaders in it are dominated by a single gender. In 2018, it was reported that women only make up 25% of the entire tech workforce in the US, and they are even getting paid less than their male colleagues.
However, that is not to say that women play no role in helping tech move forward and reach higher heights. Although small in number, there are powerful women leaders that have become successful and influential in the world of tech and have served as an inspiration for many people.
While there are certainly more who have proven to be just as powerful leaders, here are six of the most influential and successful women entrepreneurs in the tech industry
Melanie Perkins - Co-founder and CEO of Canva
With Canva, Perkins made graphics design easier and more accessible for a lot of people. From a simple college yearbook business, she and her co-founder and eventually fiancé Cliff Obrecht built Canva to become a billion-dollar startup and a design platform that made being creative a lot easier for people.
“People would have to spend an entire semester learning where the buttons were, and that seemed completely ridiculous,” Perkins told CNBC Make It. “I thought that in the future it was all going to be online and collaborative and much, much simpler than these really hard tools.”
Susan Wojcicki - CEO of YouTube
"Tech is an incredible force that will change our world in ways we can't anticipate. If that force is only 20 to 30% women, that is a problem,” Wojcicki said in an interview with Forbes.
She was hired by the company in 1999 and was the sixteenth employee in its history. Aside from being the CEO of the biggest video-sharing platform, she also spearheaded the idea for Google AdSense, which brought the company billions in additional revenue. She also had notable contributions for Google Books, Google Images, and Google Analytics.
Ginni Rometty - CEO of IBM
From struggling in legacy software products, Rometty pushed IBM to transition into cloud and analytics products, which paved the way for better opportunities for them. This resulted in the biggest growth that the company had seen for more than 21 years. She accomplished all of this only in a span of six years since she first started office as CEO.
Danah Boyd - founder and president of Data & Society
Danah Boyd, with real name Danah Michele Mattas, is a renowned thought leader of ethical data management and processing in the tech industry, with her own research institute dedicated to it. She studied at Brown, MIT, and Berkeley, and she often attributed her motivation for success to a misogynistic remark she received from a male classmate "that women could not do science."
To say that she proved that claim wrong is an understatement.
Sheryl Sandberg - COO of Facebook
For a lot of people, working for the biggest social media company in the world may sound like a very lucrative career to have. What more if you are the one mainly responsible for the monetization of the entire platform?
As the COO, this is only one of the jobs of Sandberg. She is also one of the brains behind bringing a huge boost in revenue for the company since she was appointed to her current position back in 2008. In her book “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead,” Sandberg touched upon the topics of feminism, sexism in the workplace, challenges in gender equality, and diversity in the workplace.
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Published by: Agnes Zang