As the world celebrates International Women’s Day, it is a time to acknowledge the achievements of women and recognize the work that still needs to be done to achieve gender equality. At Uniguest, we commemorated International Women’s Day by raising women’s voices and sharing their stories through a panel discussion.
The panel featured five women from Uniguest; Tammy Kelly, Alka Bajracharya, Caitlin Zielinsky, and Angelica Remache in a conversation led by Stephanie Scott and organized by Lindsey Schmidke. Each panelist had a unique story to share, but they all emphasized the importance of supporting and empowering women.
At Uniguest, we celebrate the progress that has been made towards gender equality, commemorate the strong efforts to reduce inequality, and recognize that there is still a long way to go as we embrace the concept of equity, as the theme for International Women’s Day 2023 is “Embrace Equity.”
Stephanie Scott, Head of Marketing, opened the panel discussion by recognizing that diversity and inclusivity are essential for a thriving workplace and society, and recognizing the vital role that women play in the tech industry and beyond. She emphasized Uniguest committed to creating a workplace that empowers women to succeed.
Tammy Kelly, Sales Manager in Africa, highlighted the challenges that women face while working in a male-dominated industry. Navigating a work environment where men are in the majority, and where gender stereotypes can often lead to women being undervalued is challenging.
However, Tammy also recognized the progress that has been made in recent years towards greater gender equality in the workplace. She noted that, “it is encouraging to see more women entering the industry and making their voices heard.” This is a positive sign that attitudes towards women in the workplace are changing, and that there is a growing recognition of the valuable contributions that women can make.
This sentiment was echoed by Alka Bajracharya, Software Engineer in the UK, who shared her personal experience of overcoming gender barriers in the tech industry. She spoke about how, as a woman pursuing a career in STEM, she faced discouragement from people who believed that women were not capable of excelling in these fields. “I heard people say to me, ‘Girls cannot do that [be in STEM],’ but today I am proving them wrong. I am a software engineer,” she said.
Alka also highlighted the importance of mentorship in empowering and encouraging women to pursue careers in tech. By providing guidance, support, and role models, mentors can help women to navigate the challenges and obstacles that they may face in the workplace. This is particularly important in male-dominated industries such as tech, where women may feel isolated and unsupported.
Caitlin Zielinsky, Graphic Designer in the US, emphasized the importance of recognizing the value that each member brings to the team regardless of their gender. “We need to appreciate the diversity of thought and experience that comes with having a diverse team,” she said. Recognizing and appreciating diversity is not just a moral imperative, but also a business imperative. By embracing diversity, we can create more successful and innovative teams, and ultimately drive better outcomes.
Embracing diversity is crucial to empower women. Angelica Remache, Business Intelligence Analyst in the US, highlighted the importance of intersectionality in recognizing and addressing the unique challenges faced by women from different backgrounds. By acknowledging intersectionality, it is evident that gender inequality is not a one-size-fits-all issue, and that women may have different experiences depending on their backgrounds. Angelica concluded with, “Me, a young female from Latin America, working at a tech company, now having opportunity to share my story to over a hundred people, indicates improvement.”
As we #EmbraceEquity for International Women’s Day 2023 and beyond, the panel discussion was an inspiring reminder of the progress that has been made towards gender equality in the tech industry, as well as the work that still needs to be done. At Uniguest, we are committed to creating a workplace that values diversity, inclusivity, and gender equality. We believe that women’s perspectives and experiences are essential for our success as a company.