Jade

Tell us about your journey into tech?
I didn’t study Computer Science or any related degree, but I have always been interested in technology and I find joy in solving problems. A company which specialises in filling the technology skills gap approached me and told me about Tech Consultancy, I did some research and I was hooked.

I love the tech community and more specifically the Salesforce Ohana. I started to teach myself more about Salesforce on Trailhead and completed an 8-week course at the company. I was then placed with my first client as an IT Consultant and the rest, as they say, is her-story.

How do you feel you have made a difference in what you do?
The work is never done but I am an advocate for black women in tech. Although change is happening, there is a long way to go and it is still an industry that is highly underrepresented. So I simply make myself available. I reach out and make myself available to women who are considering a career change, who have just started out and those more experienced who need an outlet.

How do you think people can go about making a difference, in regards to spreading awareness of Black Women in tech?
Making ourselves visible and sharing our journeys with others and recognising other Black Women in tech who are doing the same.

One of the barriers for me and other Black Women I have spoken to is the lack of representation. As I mentioned, I was always interested in technology but when I saw people who worked in technology I couldn’t see me and so I dismissed the idea. So any work we can do, to make ourselves visible, accessible, to share and to mentor other Black Women will go a long way.

What do you believe are the most effective ways to engage other ethnicities and genders to embrace diversity?
In open dialogues.

What is the best advice you ever received?
Put together a BRAG list. Sit down and list out all of your accomplishments and compliments/positive quotes colleagues & clients have had about you and don’t be afraid to tell others about it. There is often a tendency for us to downplay our achievements and this BRAG list will act as a reminder of your Black Girl Magic. They will be your talking points when you are going for a new position and a comfort on your hardest days.

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