Women in Tech

Women who invest in themselves go further

Nobukhosi Dlamini Women in Tech

Your Health is your Wealth
You have heard it being said that health is your ultimate wealth and it’s true. Your ability to build yourself and develop your tech career will be severely impacted if you are not in a healthy state physically or mentally. Physical health and your mental and emotional well-being are important in your journey and should therefore take priority. Eating good food to nourish your body with nutrients will not only keep you healthy but also give your body stamina to put in long hours of work. Good nutrition is also key to mental well-being. This is probably a good time to mention physical exercise. You don’t need a gym contract or to run 50 KM a week, but staying active and doing some cardiovascular exercises will keep you healthy, give your physical and mental energy as well as mental clarity. The type of exercise you should do is whatever you prefer or enjoy doing as that is probably the exercise program you are most likely to stick to.

Improve your Knowledge
Reading educational books is important in any career but even more so in the tech industry. By the time you graduate from university most of the knowledge you have acquired has become obsolete. So the critical outcome of your university career should be acquiring the skills you need to continue learning after university rather than memorizing specific information. Nowadays there are many opportunities to continue lifelong learning, including books, ebooks, podcasts, blogs, vlogs, white papers, webinars, seminars, master classes etc.

Define short-term, medium-term and long-term goals
The process of goal setting is the first step towards the attainment of any goal. Goals will help you to focus your energy and efforts towards the outcomes that you have determined to achieve. In the tech industry there are many paths to follow and there is a constant release of new tools and technologies. You could waste years of your life wandering from one stream to the other without a clear strategy on what you really wish to achieve.

Build your network
Your network will determine your net worth. Most of the opportunities you will come across will be referred to by people who know you and are invested in your success. Take time to build long-lasting relationships and expand your network. Invest in those relationships by giving more than you ever hope to get anything in return. The best way to build a credible and long-lasting network is by looking for ways to help and support others in every way possible rather than seeking to get anything for yourself. When you build your relationships with this approach in mind, people will be willing to repay your goodwill in the future.

Birds of a feather
Alongside your professional network, there is a saying that “show me your friends, and I will tell you who you are”. Or rather who you will be. It’s true that your life will rise only to the level of the people you spend most of your time around. So choose your companions wisely. This is usually a contentious point for people because many of us don’t want to let go of our “bad” friends. The younger a person is, the more they reject this universal truth. This is mostly a waste of time and you will always rise to be the average of the people you associate with. There are many psychologists who have written about this topic, and if you are struggling to accept it, it would be good to read up further on the topic. Audit your close companions regularly and see what effect your close associates have in your life. Are they helping to build you up and instill confidence in you. Or are they constantly dragging you down and making you question your capabilities, value, or sense of self-worth.

Your career in tech doesn’t have to be an uphill climb or a lonely battle. There are many simple actions you can take that will help you feel empowered and able to take on some challenges you will have to face.