As it is International Women in Engineering Day on June 23, Lesley Dean, Director- Enablement & Learning at Fluent Commerce, remarks, saying that, "There is still much societal bias in deeply ingrained gender stereotypes. Women who do find interest in engineering, and perhaps even study it, find themselves in a very male dominated, competitive environment, and often don't stick to it. Even for the few women that build a career in the industry, the management level is often dominated by men, which continues to deter women. If there were a few more female engineering managers around, this could encourage more young women to pursue this career, believing they too can climb the ranks and have influence and recognition in this field.
Don't get me wrong, we are moving forward, but too slowly to see a significant impact in the numbers. I've been in this industry for more than 20 years, and in many ways I feel as though there are even fewer women in engineering. Women tend to take specific roles or areas of study, where the numbers are more balanced, or even predominantly women.
My advice for girls and women looking to start a career in engineering: Please do it - we need you! Don't shy away from one of the most fun and rewarding careers on the planet. Learning and being able to build things, solve problems, and innovate with new ideas is addictive! Every day you have the opportunity to add value, solve a problem, be creative, and see the outcome of your work.
Organisations can do something with and through schools, helping to change some of the systemic problems. Actively seeking to hire more women engineers, contribute scholarships, and encourage their women engineers and leaders to share their stories, and talk more about the great things they are doing in their company, will also help to address this balance.
After all, diversity brings more rounded and more innovative outcomes. Women often have unique perspectives from men, and this can only result in better outcomes when both can come together to design and build solutions to problems,” she concludes.
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