Helping women to boost their careers through the more effective use of technology is the aim of an innovative event being staged in Johannesburg in October.
The Wired Woman’s Conference is aimed at debunking jargon and making tech more accessible to the woman in the workplace, to help them enhance their careers and broaden their prospects. It’s organised by QualityLife Company, co-sponsored by Nashua Mobile, a leading telecommunications company and Strate, a technology company in financial services and will take place in the Hyatt Regency hotel in Rosebank on October 15, 2013.
The conference is not only targeting the techies, says Debby Edelstein, CEO of QualityLife Company. The tides of technology are changing with a steady rise of dynamic women in prominent roles within the digital economy, Edelstein says. “Globally, women make up over half of social media users and social gamers and a significant number of Computer Science graduates,” she says. This trend is becoming increasingly apparent in Africa, but there is still a dire need to make this space more inclusive, more diverse and more innovative. The #WiredWomen conference will unpack how women with technical and leadership abilities can seize the opportunities available to them, she says.
Mark Taylor, CEO of Nashua Mobile, believes that the potential to advance women economically may be the most exciting transformative feature of technology. “Empowering women and improving the efficiency of their work is critical for reducing poverty,” he explains. That can be at the simple level of giving them a means to communicate and enable them to run a business. At a higher level, technology can give users all the tools they need to improve their qualifications and increase their knowledge to set them on the path of becoming business leaders.
Taylor says research confirms that companies stay more competitive by placing women in the boardroom, but in this hi-tech era, they really need to be techno-savvy to get there. That makes this conference relevant for everyone including geek girls, technophobes keen to catch up, social entrepreneurs, marketers and leaders committed to developing talent.
Edelstein, whose company has been organising events such as the Woman’s Leadership and Inspired Teachers Conferences for a number of years, says The Wired Woman’s Conference will field an experienced line-up of speakers and create valuable networking opportunities.
Delegates can look forward to discussions ranging from leadership lessons from social media to how technology improves the customer’s experience. A discussion on creating culture and innovation will be led by Strate CEO Monica Singer who is known for her inspirational creativity, positive energy and passion.
“As a technology company in financial services, Strate believes women bring a new and different energy to our industry and that women are capable of making a huge difference in the markets, especially when they are given the right opportunities and resources. We have a learning culture where we empower staff to learn and bring their talents to the work place so we can improve efficiencies and reduce risk in the financial markets. There is also the philosophy of ‘just do it’ and we believe that when you combine this attitude with a culture that’s energetic and passionate then you are able to achieve true success.” says Singer.