To celebrate International Women’s Day, we asked our team to share what it means to be a woman in tech, and their experiences at Arkk. Below you’ll find a few highlights from some of our contributors:
Danielle Cyrus, Sales Director
When I set the objective of writing a piece for International Women’s Day, I had no idea I would receive such amazing levels of engagement, or pieces with such raw candour about their experiences. They were touching, heartfelt accounts of adversities they had faced in their lives because of their gender, and they all had one common thread: they were now in a place where roles were offered on merit, promotions on achievement and their opinions and voices mattered. That place is Arkk Solutions.
At Arkk we base our hiring on cultural fit, alignment with our core values and getting the best people for the job. In fact, we recognise that diversity is key to keeping our culture alive and kicking, and that diversity is also what keeps us innovative and fresh as a business. We have a healthy balance of women and men, we have a wide spectrum of ethnicities, religions, races and cultural backgrounds. And the fact that we have this high level of diversity was not conscious. We didn’t set out to follow a formula of what ratios of who from where and what demographic we wanted across the business. We had a strong idea of the kind of business we wanted to be and as a result, we attracted those individuals organically.
So today whilst I hold my head up high and celebrate being a woman, I also celebrate the fact that I found myself in an environment where the women around me inspire as much as the men. I’m not fighting for equality but rather working towards the continuation of a culture that recognises that we need #balanceforbetter.
Mary Tinnelly, Team Manager
It’s that time of year again, International Women’s Day, when the world takes a day to appreciate women and pushes us to recognise each other as equals. At Arkk Solutions this does not happen just for once a year, this happens every day.
Having started my career in the Financial Services industry I quickly realised that it was a heavily male dominated industry. As a 19-year-old woman, having just left school and starting my career with one of the largest banks in the world, it was an intimidating working environment. I knew that in order to be successful I needed strength, perseverance, positivity and motivation. I was lucky to have some great mentors throughout my career, but the acceptance of inequality of women in the workplace became part of the culture in many ways.
Then nearly three years ago I moved to Arkk.
Arkk has a culture that I have never experienced before. Some would say I am lucky to work in such a progressive environment – but being treated equally is not lucky. It’s something we, as women, are entitled to and I thank Arkk for recognising this.
Andriana Soteris, Product Executive
The Tech industry is notorious for change and the influence it has in societies across the globe is immense. I don’t have to tell you technology is everywhere. It’s there in almost every aspect of our daily routine, constantly shaping the way we live our lives. As a woman working in Tech, I like knowing that my decisions have a direct impact on driving that change, and that my choices affect the experience a user has with our platform. I am part of a team which has grown organically in including more women, in positions which are shaping the success of our new product. To me this represents change, a balance which needs to be reflected wider in the industry.
Ultimately, International Women’s Day proudly represents a generation made up of women who won’t settle for what they are given, who are instead fighting for what they deserve.
Laura Kissick, Customer Success Manager
I joined Arkk in June 2016 and have quickly progressed in my career. Forbes states that almost 4 in 10 businesses do not have any women in senior management positions – compare this to Arkk where 60% of the managers are female. The company’s culture allows women to push past the generational boundaries that may hold them back in other businesses.
From an early age my parents have encouraged me to follow what I believe and try to overcome anything that may hinder this. This positivity led me to achieve what I have accomplished today. I work for an IT software company which has mostly women in their management. If you were to ask anyone what proportion of women they thought were in this type of firm, it would be very small. I am proud to work for such a forward-thinking company who involves their staff and allows them to push the modern boundaries of what is socially and traditionally acceptable out the door.
Ines Liberato, Product Manager
Last Saturday I was lucky enough to get a place at Startup Bootcamp, an event organised by the Imperial Business school, for prospective students.
To my surprise, the first lecture was given by Claire Cockerton; if Plexal doesn’t ring a bell, I’m sure that Level39 will. Claire is the woman behind these spaces that are harbours of tech, entrepreneurship and innovation.
The theme of her lecture on Saturday was “Resilience” and, aside from giving her own testimony (having to build her life from scratch after her flat burnt down in flames and how she braved through via starting her own business), she followed with other great examples of resilience, always evoking women.
That made me realise, as a woman in tech, it’s important to think of other women who set the example. So here are some of the great women you can look out for when you need some inspiration:
- Parisa Tabris, “Browser Boss / Security Princess” at Google
- Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon, CEO of Stemettes
- Dr Sue Black , Founder of Techmums
- Jacqueline DE Rojas, President at techUK & President of Digital Leaders
- Anne Boden, CEO of Starling Bank