I've been a technical author for over 20 years, and during that time I've worked for countless companies. But I've been at Pexip for over 7 years, and there's a reason why this is where I've chosen to work the longest. It's because I feel comfortable here. Not comfortable in a "baggy sweatpants, no effort" sort of way - in fact my work can be very challenging - but comfortable in a "I feel like I have a place here, I can be myself, and the people I work with share my values" sort of way.
Now, I don't believe a company can have values - but the individual people who work at a company, and those who lead it, can. Even if each of us are vastly different, and have diverse needs and wants in our work environments, we can still share the same core values. And if those shared values support diversity, and if they are demonstrated, talked about, and celebrated on a regular basis, and actively searched for when recruiting, then that will create a workplace where everyone is comfortable and further diversity can flourish.
So what is it exactly that's kept me here at Pexip? And what can other companies do to try to cultivate a workplace that is attractive to a diverse range of talent, including more women?
For me, as a working mother, flexibility is key. I work part-time, and I have the freedom to choose when I work. Of course, with this #FREEDOM comes the #RESPONSIBILITY of ensuring that I deliver, but I choose to work at the times when I know I can be totally focused on my job. And in fact this sort of freedom is attractive to just about everyone, not just working mums - allowing people to manage their own work/life balance improves their work and their lives, and who wouldn't want that?
Another issue for many women in technology companies is that often we don't have that sense of "fitting in" - especially in places with a competitive, "me first", "boys network" culture. But if you foster a workplace where cooperation, patience, and supportiveness are demonstrated and encouraged - where everyone feels part of what we at Pexip refer to as #ONE TEAM - you'll create a better place not just for women but pretty much everyone else. This sort of atmosphere should also go a long way towards creating a #NO BULLSHIT environment, one where people can act with honesty and integrity, and focus on their work and their customers without having to tiptoe around egos, play political games, or deal with childish behaviour (I get enough of that at home!).
Finally, I've been around long enough to realise that life is short and time is precious, so it's important to me that I actually enjoy the time I spend at work. Being respected and getting recognition at a #PROFESSIONAL level for the work that I do is part of that satisfaction - and there is no shortage of mutual respect and acknowledgement of a job well done at Pexip. But I also want my workplace to be #FUN - as do most people, right? After all, it's where we spend a large part of each day, for a significant part of our lives. Again, we're all different and one person's "fun" may well be another's version of hell, but whether it's dedicated games areas, Friday night pizza and film, a chat channel dedicated entirely to pictures of our cats, or getting the whole company together for treasure hunts and fancy dress parties, there's always something here to add fun to each Pexiper’s working day.
So I think that if you can foster a culture with values similar to those we share at Pexip, make those values clear in your job advertisements, and recruit people who share those values, then you will be able to attract and retain talent from as diverse a range of candidates as possible, including (but not limited to) women. And the world will be a better place too!
Want to be part of this awesome team? Take a look at our careers page.