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TechWomenNZ International Women’s Day – 8th March 2023

This year, TWNZ celebrated IWD both in person and via a webinar link. This Hybrid method proved successful and something we will continue with, in spite of some of the technical difficulties Pip faced during the initial set up! 

Ultimately, it went rather well, but we have acknowledged in the feedback from our members, that next time we shall see if we can get a wireless microphone working (because let’s face it, technology, wireless microphones and printers are all subject to what mood they have on that day!) 

Typically, TWNZ tends to have a panel of speakers, but this year we thought that Amanda Sterling’s wealth of experience and depth of focus warranted a full session which we entitled “A Fireside Chat”.

Even though her career is not specifically technology or STEM based, her work & PHD is very complimentary to a lot of the topics we cover, in particular about women progressing their careers into leadership while also being mothers. 

We acknowledge that there are many women who are not mothers, but there are still many challenges that apply. For example, the gender norms that are attached to motherhood are still often generalised onto all women; such as an emphasis from a young age on developing ‘care-giving’ skills, rather than technical skills.  

These expectations are challenging for women looking to progress their careers into leadership or business ownership and the perceptions they’re faced with in business and corporate policies. 

50 people arrived in person to the AWS Auckland office, and apparently hung around chatting and networking (isn’t it GREAT that we can do that again???) for a good hour afterwards. 

Nearly 200 joined in via the webinar. 

Amanda & Pip covered a lot of these topics:

Topics such as: 

·  Corporates and business realising that women are the only childbearers, so how do we accommodate that in the economic work space and in leadership? 

·  Gender roles & equality (or lack of……..!) across all leadership & role aspects (not just parenthood) from salary to compentency

·  Stop penalising parents in the workplace for having young children at home and raising a family. 

·  Balancing roles in the house and home as well as in business – applicable at all ages and stages of a partnership cohabitating together (in whatever form that takes)

·  Stop fixing women, we aren’t broken! (Our chair lady’s favourite saying!)

Amanda Sterling took to our IT stage with extreme comfort, in spite of the audience being of a technical background and career path. TechWomenNZ are delighted to have Amanda as an honorary member of our community. 

Thank you Amanda Sterling for joining TechWomenNZ and being interviewed by our lovely Pip Gilbert at the AWS offices.

Amanda mentioned the following women in her chat, Emma Mclean who is  TWNZ community member and speaker, and Dr Michelle Penelope King.

A recording of the webinar is available here:  Recording

TechWomen TechWomen is a group of passionate New Zealand tech, digital and ICT focused individuals from leading organisations that work together, with the support of NZTech, to help address the shortage of women in tech roles.