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Launch of meetup for women tech leaders.

Wednesday night was the inaugural launch of the Female CTOs & CIOs Meetup. The event was organised by Roisin Parkes, CTO of Gumtree Australia, and had a fantastic turnout of tech leaders from companies across Sydney.

Roisin opened the evening by sharing the mission of the group. She wanted a place where women tech leaders and their supporters could regularly gather and discuss challenges facing women in the industry, and agree on strategies we can use to proactively drive change in our own organisations. Additional context she shared: a worldwide 2017 survey* revealed that women IT leaders (e.g. CTOs, CIOs, VPs of Technology) sat at around 9%, even though one third of those organisations had diversity initiatives. It’s pretty mind-blowing, isn’t it?

Roisin led a thoughtful discussion with four fantastic panelists: Wendy Glasgow (CTO of OFX), Rohan Smith (Tech Leader of Optiver), Anne-Marie Charrett (Founder of Testing Times), and Owen Senior (CTO of Ansarada). What was great about the evening was that it wasn’t focused on rehashing the problem, but discussing practical solutions that all of us, whether employees or leaders, can bring to our own organisations. Tactical tips covered everything from interview processes, code tests, and employee benefits, to the simple day-to-day language that’s used around the office.

Huge thanks to Roisin for spearheading this event! At Lookahead, we feel passionately about doing our part to bring positive change, and look forward to continuing to support this community in future.

*Harvey Nash / KPMG survey