Episode 53: A technical problem

December 1, 2014

"It's not just about women not feeling engineering is their thing...it's about the culture of the place that makes people not want to be there even when they have the skills." - Hannah Kuchler

"The team I'm on, we have a fair number of women programmers...but even then I've had the experience of I say something, and it's just not believed until it's repeated by a guy."    
- Talia Fukuroe

21 minutes.

This has been a big year for stories about women in tech, ranging from depressing tales of sexual harassment at startups to controversy over egg freezing and advice from a prominent CEO on *not* asking for a raise. The spotlight is shining on women in technology far more strongly than when I first covered this topic on the podcast in 2012. Hannah Kuchler

In this episode we focus on Silicon Valley, the tech capital of the world. My first guest is Financial Times reporter Hannah Kuchler. She says women making their way in the heavily male tech space face obstacles large and small - and not all of them are discussed publicly for fear of retribution. Talia Fukuroe knows some of this first hand. She works for a Silicon Valley company she says is trying really hard to get things right for female employees. But the gender ratio means that just being female can present a few problems on the job - problems that can't be taken care of by company policy.

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Episode 17: Female in Silicon Valley

April 29, 2013

"In this one particular conversation I had with an angel investor...he responded, ‘Well, I don’t want to say the wrong thing and call you a meek Asian woman, but I wonder how you will lead a group of about 100 people?’" - Elizabeth Yin, co-founder, LaunchBit

Raising money for a startup is a tough proposition for any entrepreneur. Elizabeth Yin (left) and her co-founder set out more than a year ago to raise a first round of funding for their company, LaunchBit. Along the way, they became more conscious of their gender than they'd ever been before. 18 minutes. 

In part two of the show, we meet Janne Sigurdsson (above), an Icelandic director at Alcoa, the mining company, who talks about how much work her employer has done to make the firm more appealing to women. Smelters aren't known for their allure, but Alcoa upped its female workforce by more than three percent during the recession.

And we meet a couple of executives from Coca-Cola, who explain what the beverage behemoth is doing to make life better for women inside and outside the company.

Show notes: Elizabeth Yin wrote this piece for Women 2.0 about her funding experiences, which prompted me to interview her for the show. This piece from The Verge is also very revealing about just how hard it can be for women business owners to get male investors to take their ideas seriously. 

You can read more about Catalyst's honoring of Alcoa here and Coca-Cola here. Oxfam's Behind the Brands report came out in February.

Sponsorship notices: Do take advantage of Audible's and Squarespace's offers! You can get a free audio book and a 30-day Audible trial by going to Audiblepodcast.com/broad. As I said in the show, Bossypants really is great. For the Squarespace offer go to to Squarespace.com/broad and use the code 'broad4' if you decide to sign up - it'll get you a 10% discount. I built this site using Squarespace 5 - but they're now on 6, which looks even better.