The technology industry can be a gruesome and demanding place to work. It is no doubt a hub for learning and growth, but the fast pace can sometimes be overwhelming. It can be extra demanding if one is not mentally and emotionally prepared for the challenges that come with working in this ever-changing and rapidly-updating industry. But for the mind that seeks to grow beyond the mediocre, this field can open doors for exceptional progress, both professionally and financially. It is imperative to know yourself and understand your aptitude for this field before venturing into it. Surviving and thriving in the technology arena is not rocket science, and navigation will be seamless if you know the boundaries of acceptable behavior and actions.
Here are some of the key elements to keep in mind for making a strong presence in this sector:
1. Being Aware and Cognizant
Given the nature of development that seeps into technology and its related fields, there is no substitute for being aware of the happenings that occur around you. With the emergence of Artificial Intelligence and Super Intelligence, every aspect of our lives connects to technology. As a tech professional, it is mandatory for you to keep abreast with the developments in the field. Being cognizant of the events around you not only keeps you well-informed but it is also a reflection of your willingness to learn and your inquisitiveness to seek newer pastures - qualities essential to making a mark in this industry.
2. Make Your Voice Heard
In a field where the majority of people are male, it is important you remember you belong here as much as anyone else, and that your opinions are just as important as others. To be able to grow, one must have a strong voice and also the willingness to be heard. Great ideas and innovations can never take shape if they don’t get heard. Make sure you don’t get treated unfairly. If you are, voice your opinion and disagreement. Without a voice that wants to speak, you will not last long.
3. Challenge Yourself
It is important for you to keep pushing your boundaries and strive to be better each day. Your biggest competition should always be you. Know where you lack, and take measures to improve on your shortcomings. Setting a benchmark for your career will give you direction and a goal to look forward. Growth is the only option in this field; stagnation will get you nowhere. So - ensure you keep your curiosity alive, teach yourself new things and come up with new ideas. This philosophy will reflect on your vision for your company and your work, while you explore a new level of productivity.
4. Be Accepting of Criticism
The tech industry makes decisions and takes action in a matter of seconds, so chances are the reaction time will be less even than that. It can also mean there will always be room for errors. It is not prohibited to make mistakes; in fact, it is encouraged to break out of your comfort zone and experiment. But it is always good to be open to criticism and correction when you do find yourself faltering. The best way to learn is through the feedback you receive, and it helps if you show an accepting attitude. Being defensive will only push you back and negate your growth.
5. Be Confident
Confidence is a very important trait to be able to keep up with your colleagues. The knowledge and learning you bring to the table will be futile if it is not communicated or presented confidently. The way you carry yourself will have a lasting effect on people you come in contact with, and it is best to present yourself as assured rather than indecisive. Confidence also means you will be respected and acknowledged - and it filters down to your work, and how you perform. As in any other profession, confidence or the lack of it can make or break your career.
6. Ask the Right Question
Knowledge around this field is so vast that it’s impossible to know everything. You can, however, make an effort to ask the right questions in order to clarify things you do not understand. Not asking leads to ambiguity, unclear reception of ideas and thoughts, and plain old confusion. Asking relevant questions projects your keen interest to learn, and helps you build your knowledge and skill base too. Not knowing something should never intimidate you or make you feel less of a person, as questioning your peers and seniors not only allows you to learn and understand but also facilitates open communication.
7. Don’t Shy away from Asking for Promotions
When you work hard and give 100%, it is important you are remunerated accordingly. If that does not happen, you must ask for it. Proactively seeking a raise or inquiring about your promotion is not something you should ever feel uncomfortable about. It is your right to be appreciated and acknowledged for your efforts. This quality is one of the most decisive factors that either pushes you to work harder and aim higher, or makes you lose interest and give a mediocre performance. If you want to make a lasting career in this sector, you must ask for what is rightfully yours.
8. Be Brave
Whether you’re working in a team or working alone, you must be brave in backing your decisions and actions. Intimidation can have you written off in the blink of an eye. Standing up for what you believe in, and being fearless, is what will earn you the solid base you need in this field. Being brave also entails vouching for your peers and teammates when they seek your support. Do not tolerate unfairness, regardless of who is meting it out. You must be brave for yourself, and others.
9. Motherhood and Work
With the acknowledgment and appreciation of women’s contribution in the field of technology and its related industries, the provision of maternity leave has changed the dynamics of how everyone views motherhood. Women can now be competitive and ambitious, without having to compromise on having a family or making her career take a backseat. It is important to make use of the maternity and paternity leave options to ensure the responsibility of parenthood gets shared equally. It generates respect in both sexes towards each other. A long and flourishing career in technology need not be cut short if one chooses motherhood. It can amicably co-exist.
Those seeking a career in technology - women or men - should know the important thing is that there’s no alternative to hard work, confidence, and knowledge. If you can build your professional life on this motto and carry yourself with confidence and strength, you are certain to be acknowledged, appreciated, and held in high regard.
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