The tech industry is dominated by men. “But don’t worry, that’s not even a problem,” says some of Ha-Shem women in tech – who have successfully navigated the industry amidst many setbacks and limitations. In camaraderie, they have decided to offer valuable insights and guidance to others who may be facing similar challenges in this inspiring blog post about embracing equity, diversity, and inclusion for all.
Having role models and support systems is a key success determinant for everyone, especially in a male-dominated field like I.T. where unconscious biases like stereotyping and the halo effect contribute to the underrepresentation of women in tech. By sharing their experiences and advocating for equity, these four Ha-Shem Superheroes – Olaide, Veronica, Omolola, and Victoria – are contributing to a broader movement toward a more inclusive industry where women are encouraged to chase their dream careers without setting gender as a limitation. We hope that their stories inspire you to reach and surpass your potential!
Hear from our Executive Director, Olaide Akisanya, whose love for solving problems led her into proffering I.T. solutions to businesses!
Since boldly deciding to rise beyond the sociocultural stereotype of the African woman, Olaide has grown in leaps and bounds! And has contributed immensely to the growth of Ha-Shem Limited from a “one-room” company to a global brand with 100+ employees and over 200 clients in various industries.
Although the tech space is diverse and challenging, Olaide believes that there’s room for more women to join the industry and take part in contributing their ideas to define the future of technology and business. This is why she’s convinced that as the Executive Director of one of Nigeria’s leading tech companies, she has a part to play in amplifying women’s voices while also promoting a gender-neutral workplace culture that is free of gender stereotypes and unconscious biases – a conviction that has driven her into creating a more enabling environment for both men and women at Ha-Shem.
She encourages every workplace to tackle this challenge by going beyond giving people equal opportunities, to promoting equity, diversity, and inclusion and providing everyone, especially women, the support they need to thrive and be the best versions of themselves!
Meet Veronica Onwuachi, the sales & marketing guru who believes we all need to have a mindset shift about women in tech!
Veronica Onwuachi, (a.k.a Ma’am Vee) is a highly energetic and intelligent woman who found her passion in tech at a very young age and has scaled up the corporate ladder through the years to become the Sales and Marketing Manager at Ha-Shem Limited. Ma’am Vee sees the I.T. industry as a place where grit and constant learning are required to adapt to its ever-changing nature.
She believes that the biggest barrier to gender diversity in the tech industry is the societal mindset that “tech is for the strong”, and this has discouraged many women from delving into it. To this, she says “If I could do it, you definitely can!”. She is of the opinion that women should be encouraged by leaders and organisations in the tech space to begin to play active roles in the industry, and most importantly, women already in the space should upskill well enough to become a force in the industry.
Veronica is grateful for current initiatives such as internships and mentorships that have encouraged the participation of more women in tech. But in her words “There is always room for more, there is still a lot of work to do!”
Her biggest achievement in the last year was being able to learn the basics of web design and also winning the prestigious award of Ha-Shem’s Most Valuable Professional.
Omolola Alfred shares how FEAR is constituting the many barriers to gender diversity for women in tech…
Omolola Alfred in one sentence is what we describe as a lady who against all odds has made a name for herself in the tech industry. She took interest in robotics process automation during her undergraduate days and was determined to pursue a career in it amidst the discouragement she faced from her peers. Luckily, she found her path and walked gloriously in it to become a Senior Power Platform Developer at Ha-Shem Limited.
Omolola believes that FEAR is a major barrier to gender diversity in the tech space; fear that is been imposed by the popular notion that “tech is difficult and shouldn’t be a place for a female.’’ She admits that nothing is actually simple, including tech, but with knowledge and a passion for growth, you’ll get the hang of it.
In her journey, she admitted to facing so many challenges but whenever she does, she says to herself boldly and loudly “I have to get this done!”, and this has kept her going. Omolola hopes that companies and tech leaders would organize more internship programs for women because she believes it is a major way to bring more women into the space.
Her biggest achievement last year was discovering herself through a Tech Bootcamp she organized at her alma mater, where she was privileged to teach and impact over 900 individuals with relevant tech skills for the modern age. This event birthed other great things for her like becoming the “Face of Power Platform Africa” and winning the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional Award!
Victoria Erogunaiye’s message is clear: no profession is gender-based, and the sky is the limit for women in tech who build the necessary skills and knowledge!
Victoria’s story is one of determination and triumph. She stumbled upon the world of tech thanks to a church member who was developing a CGPA calculator for students. She would always see the then Biochemistry Major carrying her laptop around and it just didn’t make sense! After all, there’s no connection between Computer Science and Biochemistry. Out of curiosity, Victoria decided to ask the lady about it, and that conversation is what started what is now a very bright and fulfilling career in Automation and Microsoft Power Platform. “The journey didn’t start off easy at first,” she said. “A major challenge when I decided to leave my Banking and Finance degree for tech was not having a laptop, and the inconsistent power supply that frustrated my efforts even when I borrowed my roommate’s laptop to practice on.” Determined to pursue her dreams, Victoria went ahead to break every barrier in her path!
She believes that fear and a lack of proper sensitization are the biggest barriers to gender diversity in tech. She knows firsthand how intimidating it can be to pursue a tech career, especially as a woman. A few people doubted her choice for sure, but she didn’t let that get in the way of her dreams. She challenged herself, gained the necessary knowledge, and is now paving the way for other women to follow in her footsteps through various tech-focused community service activities.
Being a strong advocate for women supporting women, she is of the opinion that by offering more women-focused digital upskilling and emphasizing the importance of women supporting each other, we can break down the barriers that prevent more women from pursuing tech careers. Her message is clear: no profession is gender-based, and the sky is the limit if you build the necessary skills and knowledge.
Victoria’s achievements last year are a testament to her hard work and dedication. She was recognized as a Most Valuable Professional by Microsoft and was a major player in the development and deployment of an automated training management solution for one of our customers – a project she described as “different and challenging” but has made her grateful all the same because it helped her identify some key strengths as a Power Platform Developer.
Looking at these women and their unique experiences, you can see that diversity and inclusion are not only important for creating a fair and just society, but they’re also essential for driving innovation and progress in all forms.
At Ha-Shem, we are committed to promoting initiatives that provide opportunities for mentorship and career advancement in tech for more women. And this post is just another way of doing just that!
We recognize the invaluable impact you’re making in society simply by being WOMAN, and are wishing you another Happy and Empowering Women’s Month!