According to the National Science Foundation, women currently hold only 13% of engineering jobs and 25% of computer, math, and science jobs in the U.S. In a 2016 study sponsored by Women in Technology International (WITI), only 30% of women surveyed said they knew a woman (other than their mother) working in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) while they were growing up. And even though most of the WITI survey respondents were seasoned professionals, only 13% held C-level or executive jobs.
One of the most powerful tools we have, individually and collectively, to help women enter and advance in the sciences, is communication—in schools, industry, government; and in the lives of STEM women who are looking for role models and the skills they need to succeed.
PowerSpeaking developed Confident Speaking for Women to help female professionals hone the communication skills required to build and advance their careers. Consequently, we were thrilled recently to join a UK-based initiative, created by PricewaterhouseCoopers and backed by industry and the UK government, called “TechSheCan,” which aims to “Work together to generate a lasting increase in the number of females pursuing technology careers; and to share best practices from our own organisations.” As of this writing, 67 companies have signed up to participate in the initiative, including Barclays, Credit Suisse, JP Morgan—and PowerSpeaking.
We’re excited about making a difference in women’s lives through TechSheCan. For the 30-plus years we’ve been headquartered in Silicon Valley, we’ve had the honor of teaching hundreds of thousands of professionals in high-tech and biotech how to improve their public speaking and presentation skills. And now, with Confident Speaking for Women, we put a laser focus on the specific communication issues women deal with and the skills they need to break through the STEM glass doors and ceiling. “PricewaterhouseCoopers is looking for strong role models, and because of the nature of our business, we have those connections,” says PowerSpeaking’s Director, European Business Development, Sarah Palmer. “We can teach women to share their ideas with confidence.”
PowerSpeaking co-founder and Learning and Development VP, Mary McGlynn, couldn’t agree more. “Joining the TechSheCan initiative aligns beautifully with PowerSpeaking’s business and values,” she says. “We realized early on in the development of Confident Speaking for Women that the core of this workshop had to be about speaking your truth and perspective in a clear, confident, and courageous way. It is about owning your empowered message. To make a difference in our chosen careers, we must move people to action—and this couldn’t be more true than in science and technology. Our future is dependent upon it!”
We’ll keep you posted on our work with TechSheCan as it evolves. If you’d like to learn more about the TechSheCan initiative, visit: https://www.pwc.co.uk/techshecan
Our next open program for Confident Speaking for Women is October 11 in Redwood City, California. To register go to https://www.powerspeaking.com/register/ or to get more information, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Be one of the first to hear about our European dates for Confident Speaking for Women as they are released, by jumping straight onto the waiting list. Contact: email@example.com.
You can also listen to participants talk about what they learned in a recent class: