New Orleans Women in Technology | Nice Girls or Ballsy Bitches?

There’s a lot of talk in New Orleans about the growing technology industry. Last year (2013) marked the very 1st NOLA Tech Week (nolatechweek.org), and there are more tech jobs in the city than can currently be filled. Despite this, Louisiana recently received the title of “Worst State in the Nation for Women,” and our gender pay gap is the highest of all 50 states, with women earning only 67% of men’s salaries.

New Orleans WIT was founded in 2013 to address these problems. The organization has some pretty lofty goals, including increasing the number of New Orleans women in IT by 75% by 2020. You can learn more about the organization and their mission here or watch this video:

Every month New Orleans WIT hosts a roundtable about a specific topic. The group President, Torrie Adams, has a comfortable set of rules for moderating the discussions. “We’re all grown women and don’t need to mother each other,” she says while encouraging participants to share insight on the form of personal experience instead of preachy advice.

January’s roundtable theme was “Nice Girl or Ballsy Bitch, Must We Choose.” Participants addresses questions ranging from assertiveness and being well-liked at work to managing expectations and collaborating with co-workers based on their personality type.

Some of the most useful insight from the sit down (tweeted by @ClearlyTorrie) included:

no-emotional-baggage
Bitchy is just assertive with emotional baggage attached.

assertiveness
Assertiveness is far less controversial when in the construct of well-managed expectations.

being-liked
It’s not reasonable to expect everyone to like you.

liked-vs-respected
You’re well-like when you’re the person that does things. You’re well respected when you’re the person who gets things done.

The next WIT roundtable on February 19th will address an increasingly important and confusing arena for young professionals, “Social Media & Work.” Click here to register.

Want to support the cause? You can donate through their website, neworleanswit.org

 

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