Women in Technology

It's my Birthday soon and as most I'm reflecting and looking forward to new and exciting experiences with the next year. This year my birthday brought me to Miami. A place where I haven't been in years and one thing that I realized is that there's a lot of money to get out here. The prices in Miami are ridiculous and there are a lot of foreigners migrating to the warmer weather and beaches that the city of Miami has to offer. It's easy to get wrapped up in the excess of it all. Let me fill you in on my festivities.

We arrived at our first hotel and was literally there for 30 minutes and within those first 30 minutes we saw 4 roaches! Not 1... not 2 but freaking 4! They moved us to another room which was considered an upgrade and within the first 30 seconds another huge water bug. This bug was HUGE so that was it for us and that hotel. It was a beautiful hotel right on the water which wasn't cheap at all but the rooms were small which would've been tolerable without the bugs. Plus I'm already paranoid staying at hotels because I have a fear of bed bugs. Really since a little girl, I've feared bugs and the thought of a bugs sucking blood from me while I'm at my most vulnerable is horrific to even think about. So we got a refund and headed off the strip to the 4 Seasons. After pulling up to the hotel and telling the doorman of our previous experience he took care of us and I do mean that literally. We booked a double bed room online but after discussing our recent experience he put us in a room with the doubles and a master suite. Okay so actually forget just the master suite, we actually had a full 2 bedroom suite with kitchen, dining room, washer dryer, foyer and 2.5 bathrooms! He even let my 7 year old pick from a toy chest and the best thing of all was the view! Oh and not a bug in sight which equated to birthday bliss for both me and my youngest daughter. Truly impeccable customer service and I now have a preferred hotel due to this one experience.

Enough about how great the Four Seasons treated me and my family during our stay. The main focus on my weekend was to determine what's next for me. As I do every year I make it a time to reflect on the previous year and lay out a chart to build upon what I've already accomplished and at times I like to include some extra help.  On October 23rd I went to a group reading class and during the group all the participants had to pull a tarot card for a mini reading. When it was my turn I pulled the "Death" card. As discouraging as it sounds the death card doesn't always mean something bad. The psychic said that what it meant for me was that I would be going through a transition or a change. Doesn't death symbolically mean change anyway??? Hopefully my change isn't going to negatively impact me but at the time nothing particular came to mind immediately in terms of change during my reading. So what I want to do is manifest the positive changes I want to see for myself and if negative changes are in the future then hopefully my positive manifestations will assist with that transition as well.

With that being said I do know that I whole-heartedly will manifest a change as it relates to what I do professionally. I want to help women discover new possibilities within the I.T. world.  In particular women of color! More women and especially women of color are needed in the I.T. world and juggling the high demands of I.T. and family. The world is changing and technology is playing a huge role in restructuring the world as we know it. The industry in itself is so vast and constantly evolving but one thing is certain, it's not a dying industry and women need to take action within it. I want to step into the arena to help guide women to understand how they can make an impact. How I will do this exactly will develop but it's where I see myself heading. It's the legacy that I want to leave and I want to make sure that I'm able to assist even if it's just bridging others together with information and resources that will help women change their financial futures and impact the industry.

There is money to be me made in this industry and women are taking larger roles in leading the household therefore their finances should also make strides to match the head of house-hold role. In addition to making more money the industry in itself can be very rewarding knowing that you're impacting the world in some form and there is no debate that technology is reshaping the world. Even during my travels I see a lot of people who change locations for work and many of them are foreigners. In Miami alone it's been reported for years that the amount of European expats who are migrating to Florida is on the rise and it's driving real estate prices up. I don't believe this will be a trend that will end soon. With technology playing a larger role in everyday life, people from all across the globe are discovering new possibilities in foreign lands and they're migrating. The world is shrinking in terms possibilities therefore when we think of the future we should all think globally and that in part is largely due to advances in technology. I want to help women understand the potential and help them focus on where they see themselves within it.


Sexism in the Workplace

It's Tuesday and my work will be short because I'm starting my birthday celebrations early so today is my Friday and it's already been a long 2 days.I cannot wait to unwind with some sand and sun but I must admit it's been unusually warm here in the north-east region. Normally it's definitely sweater weather around these parts but it's been full fledged short and flip-flop days. The mornings are the only exceptions because it's quite cold on some early mornings but it's also been drastic fluctuations of at least 20-25 degree differences between 6am to 12pm which is insane but hey... I'll take it. 
Another day, another unsettling sexual harassment accusation against the men in Hollywood. This time it's against a director named James Toback and his count just hit 38 women. The Harvey Weinstein story opened the flood gates and the stories we've since discovered due to this case are horrific and deeply worrisome. Most cases of sexual misconduct in the workplace are less overt than these which in some cases have been reported as rape! It's insane that these men felt such entitlement due to their positions but it definitely spans further than just Hollywood. There are a lot of women who have experienced some form of sexual misconduct from men in the workplace. There are tons of men in corporate America who act inappropriately and women deal with it and remain quiet due to the perceived threat of losing their jobs due to them speaking up. Who wants to be scrutinized, judged and questioned with the possibility of being labeled a problem or a trouble maker by colleagues or human resources? I know I've never reported any misconduct and I've definitely dealt with my share of inappropriate bosses and it didn't occur just once. Nor was it at one job or industry.  It's really a shame but I believe abuse of power is rampant and a widely accepted practice within many corporations. That's not to say that it's right but definitely woven into the corporate DNA.  My sister-in-law has a co-worker who has worked within a major corporation for years and she has held on to her very first employee handbook. In it the company advised women on workplace etiquette by describing how to be a better work wife to their male boss.
It wasn't unusual back then to incorporate such sexist ideals within the employee handbook. This illustration below is from a 1940's for Disney and it's filled with sexist undertones. Disney has always been a family oriented corporation so if we clearly see it laid out in a Disney employee handbook imagine those who were really dominated by men. We need more women in positions of power throughout corporate hierarchies and only then will the narrative change for women. 



Perfect Your Passion

Although we're busy in this world ensuring that we maintain the basics it's imperative that we remember to nurture our passions whatever those happen to be. Your passion may be singular or they may be many. Still the more you invest in yourself and do the things you truly enjoy, the more you will improve your well being. It's nurturing to the soul and therapeutic when you're preoccupied with task that make you happy. You in turn improve your concentration and it helps alleviate stress from other things in life that may be overwhelming.

In addition if ever you wanted to venture into a new career or have a side hustle you can transition you passion into additional income which can lead to a career overhaul.  If you're able to transition your passion into a profitable business it will take much more than just the love of your craft so be mindful of all the additional responsibilities that would be associated with trying to turn a profit. In doing so it may take the fun and satisfaction out of it. However for most it's a really rewarding way to earn an income and when there is love invested into in action the universe inadvertently rewards that effort with success but it will all take time. But whose actually tracking time when you're doing things you truly enjoy? 

If  you're interested in potentially building an income from your passion there are a few things that you must keep in mind.
  1. Build your network. Some people are very reserved when showcasing their most intimate goals and self expression but if you're contemplating earning a profit out of your passion be sure that you're setting the ground work in advance. One great way to get people talking about your skills and garner brand loyalty is to develop a social network page primarily for your craft and post frequently. You'll build your network and your also build a consumer awareness surrounding your brand.
  2. You'll need help. You wont possibly be able to know it all and do everything so it's imperative that you're able to acknowledge when it's time to outsource and delegate certain task and responsibilities to others. There are tons of resources out there for niche employees who can do your mundane task for relatively little cost. Part of the battle is recognizing when you need to outsource. It may be that you have little interest in the brunt work or that you want to optimize your time. The little task do add up and hiring someone else to delegate those task to can often make or break your motivation to continue.  
  3. Practice makes perfect! Study your craft and truly invest the time to fine tune your skill set. The more you're familiar with the nuances and small details the better equipped you'll be at setting yourself apart from the competition.