Posted on 3 May 2008

Where are the Girl Geeks for the Tech Jobs?

A few days ago, I was part of an interesting conversation. I had a lunch meeting with three managers of a department for one of my clients. One (male) had just completed several first-round interviews with candidates I had provided. Another manager (female) asked him a very simple, but awkward question:

How many girls did you hire?

Of course, I chimed in quickly that our candidates are selected solely on skill-match, qualifications, education and relevant experience and NOT on their gender… which is the truth.

However, a few days later that comment is ringing in my head.

Its not that I have never recruited a woman to fill a job… we do it a lot… but there is no denying it that, if I was to take a look at the gender of my candidates, most of them are male. Of course, I don’t TRACK that sort of thing in my office.

Also, my company is likely one of the most fair/balance organizations I’ve ever worked for in terms of men/women employees…

About a month ago, Gizmodo published a story reporting that Girl Geeks are “On the Rise

the male-dominated era of technology and gadgets may be coming to an end. Some activities, such as using a DVR to record a TV show, or streaming movies or games, are more popular amongst women than men.

But, when it comes to filling technical jobs with a balanced number of male/female candidates, where ARE the girl geeks?

I have a few theories:

  • My recruiting processes are structured in such a way that our jobs are just not interesting to female applicants?
  • Girl Geeks have secret clubs that they tell nobody about… and they share their jobs with each other only.
  • Girl Geeks have a drive and purpose that is different than the current bulk of candidates I work with. It appears that many professional women I know have a strong entrepreneurial “I can do it myself” streak… maybe “workin’ for da man” (pun only half-way intended) is even LESS interesting to women?

Please comment, below… especially if you are a girl-geek and you have some insight for me?  I would especially like to know if, as a woman, you feel the existing job-search “system” out there is unfair to you, and why…

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