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Why the tech industry needs to learn to listen to drive equality

By Kathleen Pai


The tech industry is often considered male-dominated, and women in tech can experience a range of biases—conscious and unconscious—throughout their careers, often feeling the need to adapt to the construct of the male-dominated industry. But it’s important for women to be able to bring their full, authentic selves to work because women have so much to offer. We all need to work together to break the bias, whether it’s being talked over or not having a seat at the table, because that’s the only way we will create equality both at work and outside of it.


That’s not to say there aren’t some big barriers to change we need to overcome as we envision a more equal world. One of the biggest, in my opinion, is for the industry to proactively listen to women and seek to truly understand women’s needs. There are so many ways we can be working towards creating a more equal world, but if we start by listening to an urgent need or one you know you can have a direct impact on, identify that need and start there. It can seem overwhelming because we know there are so many changes that need to be made, but don’t let that keep you from taking action once you’ve listened and identified a way to help create that change.


The technology industry can play an important role in reaching this point by focusing on creating and supporting an environment where women can thrive. For instance, at N-able, we recently launched our women’s Community of Interest (COI) called WONDER—Women of N-able Defining Equality and Respect. This community is just one of many ways we’re working to create a supportive environment for women to build a sense of belonging, share feedback on their experiences, and continuously learn and grow together with their members and allies. Again, it’s particularly important in the tech industry for companies to create space to listen to feedback from women in their organization and work together to take action and drive change.


Kathleen Pai is Chief People Officer at N-able


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