Gender inequality is always a topic of conversation.  The Canberra Times recent article entitled, “Public service gender equality no easy task,” reported on new efforts in Government to strive for a 50-50 gender balance across the workforce.

Annually, Forbes publishes a ranking of the Most Powerful People.  In 2015, of the 73 people ranked, there were 12 in technology including one woman — Virginia M. Rometty, Chairman, President and CEO of IBM.  In the overall list, there were nine women.  In addition to “people,” Forbes also publishes Most Powerful Women.  Of the top 25, seven are women in technology. From 26 - 100, there are an additional 11 women.

But what does it all mean to those of us who aren’t running a multinational tech company – yet?  The women who have made it to the top have all charted different pathways.  Some have been coders, engineers, marketers, strategists, financiers. Just because you’re in IT, doesn’t mean that you are a "dev."

At Diversus, we have 40% women; most tech companies have less than a third. In 2014, Fortune gathered the employee demographic data of 14 tech companies and ranked them by gender and ethnic diversity.  Fortune has released their 2015 stats on 30 July 2015. In terms of women, Airbnb was at the top of the list with 47.5% and Microsoft with a lowly 12.5%.

We have all chosen our career for our own personal reasons.  Many people see IT as the key to unlocking the possibilities in many different industries.  Others see IT as a way to work in a truly global business.  Or maybe we are strong at math and solving problems.  Some of us are more aligned to the electronic aspects of IT.  One colleague studied computer science in university because her friend said she wasn’t smart enough. But whatever the reason we started our career path, we are here now surrounded by smart people creating a career with endless possibilities.

In terms of gender, we may not have reached the equity of the world population of 1:1, but we’re on an upward trend. So next time you are the project manager of a team of men, remember why you chose your career path and smile.  From time to time, it also pays to think about your full-time working sister in other male-dominated industries: arts and recreation (18.2%), agriculture (15.4%), mining (14.0%) and construction (5.9%.)

At the end of the day, we all need to keep in mind: “If you can find something that you're really passionate about, whether you're a man or a woman comes to a lot less into play. Passion is a gender-neutralizing force.” #22 Most Powerful Women Marissa Mayer, Yahoo! CEO

Women in Technology Appearing on Forbes 2015 Most Powerful Women Ranking

Rank

Name

Age

Category

#8

Sheryl Sandberg

46

COO, Facebook

#9

Susan Wojcicki

47

CEO, YouTube, Google

#13

Ginni Rometty

58

CEO, IBM

#14

Meg Whitman

59

CEO, Hewlett-Packard

#22

Marissa Mayer

40

CEO, Yahoo

#24

Safra Catz

54

Co-CEO, Oracle

#25

Angela Ahrendts

55

SVP, Retail, Apple

#29

Ursula Burns

57

Chair-CEO, Xerox

#32

Ruth Porat

58

CFO, Google

#33

Lucy Peng

43

CEO, Ant Financial Services, Alibaba Group

#44

Laurene Powell Jobs

52

Founder and Chair, Emerson Collective

#45

Renée James

51

President, Intel

#51

Amy Hood

44

Chief Financial Officer, Microsoft

#77

Mary Meeker

56

General Partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

#78

Solina Chau

54

Cofounder, Horizon Ventures

#84

Padmasree Warrior

55

Chief Technology and Strategy Officer, Cisco Systems

#95

Weili Dai

54

Cofounder-President, Marvell Technology Group Ltd.

#98

Jenny Lee

44

Managing Partner, GGV Capital