Reflections on the Women in Tech festival
Blog by Sam Cox, Policy Officer, People, Strategy, and Corporate Services Division.
Following my attendance at the recent Empowering Women to lead Digital Transformation course, I was offered a place at the Women in Tech festival, run by Scott Logic, which I was delighted to accept. The goals of the festival were for attendees to explore personal growth and learn about technology innovations being led by women in the industry. Sessions were offered as keynotes, panel discussion, workshops and fringe events with speakers and delegates from around the globe leading to there being content available for everyone who attended. It also aimed to break barriers and lead the way in discussions surrounding diversity.
I appreciated how both days began with a brief session on mindfulness, it felt like it set the right tone to be present in learning as much as I could in each of the sessions I attended over both days. Because the entire festival was virtual, there were also virtual exhibitor booths that you could click through to learn more about the various partners of the event. These pages provided information about the business through articles and videos and focused on topics including diversity and inclusivity. I thought this was a neat way to showcase the businesses that helped bring this festival together. They also included an area to network with speakers and other delegates, and an opportunity to be a mentor or mentee to someone else attending. The festival offered all the perks of a live conference from the comfort of my own home!
There were loads of different options for sessions and it was fun to login to my festival account and add a variety of sessions to my calendar. It was also helpful that the sessions were available as live and on demand so I could make the festival work around my schedule. I aimed to have a healthy mix of things I think I needed to learn more about (being a better ally, tackling imposter syndrome) and those I was just genuinely interested in, such as the session on robotics.
I really appreciated getting to listen and learn from a wide variety of women in tech from numerous locations, companies, and backgrounds. The session I enjoyed most was hosted by Amie Zhou, the Head of Business Office at Worldline on the topic of making the leap to work from studying. This resonated with me as I’ve only recently re-joined the working world on the back of completing a master’s degree. I appreciated the focus on navigating different leadership styles in the workforce to be successful in my career and how to network for success. I took lots of good notes throughout this session and I look forward to applying what I learned as I continue in my career with Scottish Government.
Overall, I truly enjoyed all aspects of the festival. I felt all the sessions were extremely relevant and each had something unique to offer in terms of speakers and lessons learned. If this festival takes place again next year, I highly recommend checking it out.