Web Savvy Women Finding High-Tech Success
Posted November 14, 2000
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK — Computers and the Internet affect our lives everyday. Women have been slower than men to adapt to the technology, but that is changing dramatically!
E-mail, the Internet, computers. Technology drives the economy and women are buying into it. In the United States, the number of women online now outnumbers men.
"They are tracking their investments, they're shopping for cars, shopping for all sorts of things, using e-mail, they're doing research," says Dr. Katheryn Wright, a psychologist.
It is the same kinds of things men do online. It just took a little longer.
Kristy Bellingham is a one-woman recruiting business. Womens' new grasp of technology opens opportunities for her.
"There's definitely more women coming in. I think women bring a different perspective to technology," she says.
Bellingham helps Triangle start-ups and other small companies fill the thousands of high-tech jobs available.
Her customers say you have to be good to get a good job.
"When you hire just good people you don't care whether they're purple, green, men, women, big, whatever," says Bob Cymbalski, vice president of Tavee Software.
Nicole Grummond's knowledge of computers and programming led to her job as director of the project office for HiddenMind, a leader in the wireless Internet revolution.
In just five years, American women have taken over the Internet, and, like Grummond, are moving into the world of high tech.
"I use my pager to get my e-mail and correspond with all the things that I have to do -- sending out project statuses, stuff like that," she says.
With unemployment at such a low level and the demand for trained workers in technology increasing, more and more office cubicles are being filled by women.
The "nerd complex" puts off some women and causes others to drop out.
"They're giving up because our society is convincing them that you can't be a women unless you turn into some kind of man kind of thing and that's just not true," says Cymbalski.
"This is changing slowly, but it does need attention and it does need encouragement. We need to encourage our girls," says Wright.
Grummond, a daughter of IBMers, says women tend to see the big picture more easily.
"The Internet is about handling a lot of things at one time. If that's true, then women are handling that better. They're more apt to lean toward that."
And that may be a key to their success on the Internet and in the business of high tech.