Is IT a boy thing?
Some weeks ago, I created a poll in a Facebook group called Entrepreneurs for Nepal with 1,02,491+ members. It’s a vibrant public group created by Mr. Ujjwal Thapa, where entrepreneurs can promote, ask, or give suggestions about businesses. Honestly, I think it is one of the best groups to be in if you’re an entrepreneur who is just starting or excelling in your business. Since I work in a tech company, I wanted to understand my sector better.
So I asked:
Who comes to your mind when I say tech entrepreneurs or tech leaders in Nepal?
The most prominent answer was Mahabir Pun with more than 377 votes followed by Asghar Ali, Amit Agrawal and Biswas Dhakal. There were also some votes for “Still No one”.
On a second note, out of 11 poll options that were created by the 1,02,000 members, not a single female came to anyone’s mind when such a question was asked. It’s not that there are no women leaders in the tech industry, we have very few female role models and leaders. Even if we do have female leaders in tech, they are not as recognized in Nepal.
Of course, writing code or building something from scratch is often intimidating. Hours and hours of going through code and bug fixing are tedious jobs that can be frustrating at times. We need to understand that tech for tech's sake has never solved any problems in the world and is not the right way to draw in more women in the sector.
Anyone who is passionate about IT sector knows that and the power of tech to solve real world problems. The digital revolution in ride-sharing, ecommerce and digital wallets that are uprising in Nepal came out of necessity. New and innovate technologies make people more efficient and aware of their environment which makes them able to appreciate their world in an entirely new perspective. Technology is a critical driver of growth not just for the tech industry itself, but for many other industries.
Therefore, the lack of women in engineering classes and tech industry now invites even more challenges for female leadership in the future.
Initiatives have been taken to inform girls about the possibilities and opportunities in the IT sector but we have been asking the wrong questions such as:
How girls can be inspired to embrace technology?
Such a mindset is a part of the problem! As mentioned above, embracing technology just for the sake of it rarely appeals to women, let alone men. Young women do embrace technology and the interest is already there. We can see young girls glued to smartphones, laptops or tablets.
Not everyone should get into technology, it’s about doing the things that make you happy and making an impact.
Also, technology is not just about writing code or creating robots. Technology is an innovative way of thinking that makes life more easier, efficient and awesome.
To discuss more, I am conducting a session with makesense which is an INGO that inspires and empowers citizens, entrepreneurs and organisations to build an inclusive and sustainable society together.
The event is happening in Silk Innovation office located in Jhamsikhel, Nepal from 3 pm onwards. I would love to hear if you have more to add or if you disagree with my opinions. You will meet a lot of like minded people and have a productive Wednesday afternoon.
See you there!
Click here if you want to know more about the event! P.S: It's a free event.