2015 was not a great year for women in technology, but that's hardly surprising. But let's be real, gender diversity is not a new topic of conversation. But now, we're halfway through 2016; have things changed?
To give you all a little history lesson, Marissa Mayer was named president and CEO of Yahoo Inc. in 2012 but she was a rare example set for women in technology. At that time, men occupied more than 75% of executive positions in technology that year, according to the 2012 TechTarget salary survey. That seems crazy to think about, considering we are living in the 21st century.
According to a Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council report, from 2007-2014, the number of women within the tech field grew by less than 4,000, despite that more than 17,000 jobs overall. Yes, men in Massachusetts literally took thousands more tech jobs than females.
But why does a gender gap exist?
TechTarget's Wendy Schuchart explained one theory that might explain the gulf between men and women is that "women are less likely to apply to or value-higher paying jobs." Studies, however, have not shown any evidence to support that.
Understanding that women communicate differently from men might be the first step in addressing the disparity regarding gender and technology. Carolyn Leighton, founder, CEO and chairman of Women in Technologity International tells SearchCIO, that women are inherently different than men and that women intrinsically are multitaskers.
So is there no fix?
Massachusetts Technology Collaborative CEO Pamela Goldberg explains one way her organization is aiming to break down the barriers of gender imbalance is by encouraging young people to study math and science in order to be prepared for entry level jobs. She adds that the technology industry is a growing interest for women.
More solutions: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg encouraged young women to be the nerd. In response to a post that read "date the nerd in school, he may turn out to be a Mark Zuckerberg," the social media innovator said it'd be better if they were "the nerd in the school so they can be the next successful inventor!"
It is difficult to change a collective mindset but we need to be determined advocates for change. But perhaps what we need to do most of all is to stop talking about gender and technology. And when we do, maybe that is when it ceases to be newsworthy.