Our book, Human: Global perspectives on diversity in tech features firsthand accounts from 25 individuals, offering insights into what the technology community is doing to create more inclusive environments from the perspective of the individual. Here’s Daria’s story.
Daria Suvorova is a legal consultant in the field of cryptocurrencies investing and trading. In 2018, she co-created a series of blockchain conferences called moinblockchain, with a focus on inclusion and diversity. Her goal was to create access for women to learn about the tech foundations and to network with fellow attendees in a comfortable setting.
Never could I have imagined I would one day be working in tech! I used to be a professional tennis player and studied business and law as an undergraduate.It was during my master’s program in Hamburg that I first dived into tech. In 2016, I wrote my thesis on blockchain-based Smart Contracts in the form of a legal analysis, from then on I started researching various blockchain use cases and got into the nitty gritty of this new promising tech industry. I realised how powerful technology can be and how it can affect the lives of millions. It is how the cards fell for me, and I am very thankful for that.
I have found that to create the right business culture you must start with yourself - start by working on your own values, your own behaviour and attitude. You want to work with people you are most comfortable with, but you cannot create a diverse team if you personally don’t find it valuable. Reflect and see how you can make diversity matter to you personally, only then can one understand the benefits of diversity and harvest the fruits, as diverse and inclusive organizational cultures attract the best talent!
Moreover, to better support women in terms of progression into leadership roles, companies should be offering direct mentorship and match young women with women or men in leadership roles. Direct mentorship is one of the most effective ways to help young women find stable ground and learn from their senior colleagues in a tete-a-tete format. Also, companies must provide visibility and empowerment to their women employees internally and externally. Their voices should be heard externally by representing and speaking on behalf of their companies. This gives confidence to women and they will be more likely to envision themselves in leadership roles.
Daria’s advice for young women starting out their careers in tech:
// First of all, it’s important to understand that technology is the greatest equaliser, it makes many things possible: access to education e.g. online courses, remote working, and a global network of professionals at the palm of your hand – so leverage it and use it to your advantage!
// Start growing as a tech professional by using this valuable resource. Create and sustain your own professional life in a format of your preference – everything is in your hands.
// Tech is a wide topic and it’s easy to get lost. If you don’t know where to start learning and how to specify your focus, try first to expose yourself to a “tech environment” by going to events and meet-ups. Look for two things: topic that sparks your interest and role models that inspire you.
// Role models are crucial as you will have an opportunity to learn personal stories of actual women working in tech industries. You will hear their accomplishments as well as challenges, and you will have a chance to envision yourself in a role that was before unimaginable for you. And step by step you will start meeting individuals that will help you shape your career path!
Read more stories like Daria's by downloading our Human: Global perspectives on diversity in tech e-book here, and don't forget to check out our second instalment of Human, Human 2: Bold leadership through crisis and change which you can download here.