Women in Tech

The Youth for Technology Foundation (YTF), an international non-governmental organisation (NGO), has urged women not to be discouraged when they make mistakes while trying to reach their goals in life.

Mrs Njideka Harry, the Chief Executive Officer YTF made the call at the 6th edition of Google’s WomenTechmakers programme held in Lagos on Saturday.

The Google Techmaker programme is an avenue where Google provides visibility, community, and resources for women in technology globally.

The YTF is an international NGO that works across six different countries to create enriched learning communities where the use of technology affords opportunities for disadvantaged people, particularly youth and women.

According to Harry, women should allow themselves to make mistakes, and not be hard on themselves as they can do better.

She said that the motivating thing that women should focus on, that would help them go up after the fall, was the end goal.

“What do you want out of your life; each of us has an opportunity to be in the driver’s seat of our business.

“What we want our lives to look like, we are responsible for those outcomes.

“So, whether in business or personal life or what have you, we will all have instances where we make mistakes that should be definitely reviewed.

“The opportunity there is to learn from those mistakes to be able to pivot or change direction, not losing sight of your initial strategy.

“Of course, we need to get up, humbly admit our mistakes and move on, and oftentimes, the second time is the better time because we learn from those mistakes, and wherever we are, we should be able to perfect them.

“In this tech space that we are in, there are so many moving parts, emerging and disrupting technology, and this is making the world to move fast.

“We need to prepare to fit into these trends, and along the line, we may fall. We need to fall with grace and get up to move forward,” she said.

Harry urged women to make use of mentors and sponsors who would talk to them.

She said that the combination of sponsors and mentors would aid the tech woman and give her a sense of direction in what she wants to achieve with her business.

Harry also urged the women to adopt the combination of competence and confidence factor for them to move forward, as both are critical to driving their career.

She listed two characteristics that would drive their career as a performance currency which had to do with their work exceeding expectations and visibility currency which had to do with people knowing about their work.

Harry urged women not to downplay their worth in the workplace, for a better workplace would result in a better home front.

She called for breaking of the digital divide that exists in the country, saying it should start in the school system.

According to her, the youth are the assets of the economy and they are within the productivity cycle, hence the need to train them digitally.

“Technology has a role to play as it has to do with democratising information, and this will help people.

“Technology should be a basic human right and should be accessible and affordable to every person,” she said.