Two of my favourite websites are Harvard Business Review and MIT Technology Review. Every time I read one of their articles I learn something new and usually have an “aha” moment than can apply to my daily life.
Reading one of these articles helped me to become (even more) aware of the importance of networking and the role of conferences as a great arena to meet like-minded people.
The article at issue analyzed data to describe the outcomes (both financial and intelectual) that occurred in the year after women attended conferences for women. The results are astonishing: the likelihood of receiving a promotion doubles, the likelihood of receiving a pay increase triples, and 78% percent of the women who took the survey reported feeling “more optimistic about the future” after attending a conference. Jaw-dropping figures…
So after looking at the data I made a decision: in 2019 I’d attend an IT-related conference for women.
Last year (2018) I had the opportunity to attend one of the most relevant conferences for technical writers: Write the Docs in the beautiful Prague. It was a great experience with a lot of hands-on exercises, smart technical writers and developers and amazing talks.
This year I wanted to stay in the IT field, but also get some insights into how women can best navigate the IT-world. If you are skeptical on whether this topic is necessary take a look at the data.
So I decided to take 3 days off, invest some money in myself and buy a ticket for the Women in Tech Summit in Warsaw. So far, one of the most encouraging experiences in my professional career.
I’d need several posts to talk about the positive energy, keynote speeches, panels, mentoring 1:1 and meaningful discussions I shared at the conference. Instead, I will list below the takeaways I collected from this great experience. Some are simple notes or keywords, but they resonated with me:
- Only you define who you are.
- Trust in yourself.
- You have to be willing to take risks. Otherwise you won’t grow.
- Make sure you don’t have people around you telling you what you can’t do.
- Where do I want to be five years from now? (aka the importance of having a plan)
- Sometimes you have to take steps in the dark (I’ve done this many times. It definitely pays off)
- Most of the aforementioned statements were pronounced by by Georgette Mosbacher, US ambassador to Poland and a very inspiring woman.
- Sabrina González Pasterski: Don’t be afraid to change course
- Be willing to ask for help.
- Isaura Gaeta: Reframe failure to build something new.
- Implicit Association Test (mind blowing)
- Six Sigma methodology
- The importance of courage
- You don’t have to be anyone else. Follow your journey.
- It’s ok to fail. Learn from it and move on.
- Be a continuous learner. If you are not learning, something is wrong.
- Be open to change
- Embrace new opportunities
- Persist with grit – be resilient
- Learn from feedback
- See a challenge project as a way to improve yourself vs prove yourself.
- Be inspired to be yourself
- Have a plan
- Be kind to yourself
- The broken rung
- What are you excited about?
- Follow your intuition
- What are your personal priorities?
- Learn from the setbacks
- Life is like a camera, focus on what’s important.
- Put your wellbeing at the top of your priorities
- Climb the ladder one step at a time
- Find your way to plug yourself into a charger
- Take a step back to identify where to focus, think and analyze
- Planning is key
- You cannot do everything
- See your team as a source of learning
- Apply learnings from past experiences
- Listen to others
- Find your own choices to assure your wellbeing
- What is your value proposition?
- Talent is overrated
- Take the first steps and don’t overthink
- Focus on delivering
- Free up time for yourself
- Work smart and not hard
- Build solid relationships and stay true to yourself
- Build a strong network
- UX writing
- The majority of people using the Internet have the reading level of a 7-grader
- Familiar words are faster to understand
- Only 20% of the page content is read
- Words are design
- If you can, give humor a chance
- Have an online portfolio