International Women's Day
Today is International Women's Day (IWD), and we asked a few of our developers about their experiences working in tech and gaming.
1) What are some of the stereotypes women face in the video games industry?
Cecilia: “Women don’t like games, or if they do… they aren’t “real” games – implying that anything but the “hardcore” games typically marketed towards men don’t count.”
Kat: “When presenting feedback, women can face a stronger pushback than when a male colleague offers similar opinions. The stereotype here would be that women aren’t as knowledgeable about games as men.”
Carolina: “The idea that women who speak up or present a strong opinion are perceived as angry or opinionated. You should never shy away from sharing your opinions in fear of being perceived the wrong way.”
2) In your experience, how have you overcome those stereotypes?
Cecilia: “I've found that open, honest, and respectful communication has always been the best tool. Staying quiet only helps perpetuate false stereotypes.”
Kat: “Having an honest, open discourse on these issues tends to result in greater awareness and, with time, a better understanding of how to tackle it. Small steps that change the framing of the issue are helpful, especially because the perpetuation of these stereotypes may not be intentional.”
Carolina: “Developing my ability to speak with clarity, to defend an opinion, and to recognize when I'm wrong. Also, the ability to let go. That bad meeting, that rough email with feedback, that awkward conversation – learning to reflect on why it happened, how it made me feel, learn from it and let it go.”
3) What’s one piece of advice you would give to women aspiring to break in to the videogames industry?
Cecilia: “Most of the time, the greatest obstacles are internal, not external. Sometimes we don’t take as many chances or get as involved as we’d like for fear that we’re going to be thought of a certain way. Let passion and growth fuel you - not a desire to prove people’s preconceptions right or wrong.”
Kat: “Be an expert. Whatever you’re into, become knowledgeable about it so that you have a strong contextual base to reference when you’re bringing innovative ideas to fruition! Meet people. People are the key to the industry – go to events, meetups, conventions, and follow up with your newfound buddies. The industry is deceptively small, and friends you make today can be working at your dream studio tomorrow. And lastly – kick ass. Kicking ass has nothing to do with gender.”
Carolina: “Love something. Learn why you love that thing. Develop excellence at that thing. Share your passion at work and lead the way, regardless of your position.”
We’re proud to offer a fun, friendly, and inclusive work environment for all of our employees but like everything, there’s always opportunity to make it better. More than ever, we’re proud to be part of the conversation around International Women’s Day, and look forward to keeping it going year-round, as we try to make the video games industry a better place for everyone.
To learn more about IWD, visit the official website or join the conversation on social via #IWD2016.