Why Cloud Knowledge Needs to be Turned into Action

In recent times, cloud computing has become a commodity to organizations all over the world. Most companies use cloud computing in one form or another because of the efficiency it offers. However, most companies have yet to recognize and unleash the full potential of the cloud.   

A new report from The Economist Intelligence Unit and IBM found that among 572 business leaders surveyed, almost three-fourths indicate their companies have piloted, adopted or substantially implemented cloud in their organizations yet, only 38% cite cloud as a leading priority for the entire company. Rather, cloud is still viewed by many as an IT solution, with 62% citing cloud as a leading priority for their IT organizations. (Forbes

While cost-cutting is a crucial reason for the growth of cloud computing, there are other usages cloud plays in the disruptive innovation of the IT sector. Hence, it is extremely important for companies today not just to incorporate cloud computing but acquire knowledge about the technology to utilize its fullest potential. 

Today, most companies use cloud technology for file storage or backup or as a means for disaster recovery; the basic mundane use of cloud, which kick-started the growth of the cloud industry. However, plenty of other options like Online Marketplaces, Ecosystem Connectivity, Artificial Intelligence, Large-scale market adaptability, and scalability remains largely unexplored by various small and mid-level businesses simply due to lack of knowledge and the ability to turn knowledge into action. 

That being said, it would not be completely true to believe that cloud knowledge isn’t being put to action. Cloud Hyperscalers like Microsoft, IBM, Google, and Amazon not only display cloud innovations in their products but they also offer software to businesses that echo their needs. The knowledge and resources these organizations possess about the cloud are immense, and hence it becomes inevitable that the profitable numbers are kept aside and this piece technology is used for the greater good of the society. 

Women in Cloud recognizes the importance of empowering businesses through technology for a better society. With Microsoft and IBM leaders on board, the community offers cloud tech support to businesses led by women like Stylyze Inc, a B2B Retail SaaS platform to enhance product catalog that curates like a personalized stylist and RightSciences, a B2B SaaS platform to develop plant-based patch formulation for hyper-personalized medicine delivery.

Knowledge is an asset in the tech-driven world we are a part of today. While knowledge is available all around us, the power to tap into the knowledge and channel it into action lies with few.

There are various ways knowledge can be converted into collective action. Women in Cloud particularly focuses on making an impact in the following ways;

  • Providing and supporting access to customers, funding, and resources
  • Accelerating businesses through policy resources and readiness 
  • Striving to create and spread innovative solutions, partnerships and communities

 Hence, knowledge management and information dissemination become vital for sustainable growth.

Cloud computing is a technological innovation that can be used for improving lives in society. An estimate suggests that Cloud will provide the digital infrastructure of tomorrow’s cities, where an estimated 6 billion of the world’s population will live by 2045. 

It is safe to say that in the near future, Cloud computing is going to be a bigger part of our lives than it already is. Therefore, it is important to not just acquire knowledge about cloud computing to all types of businesses but to utilize technology for a better technologically-enabled society should be the goal. 

With that thought, stay tuned for the next blog about how to make powerful alliances to further your business or personal goals.

 

Owning Your Dream Opportunity By Julie Chase

It’s difficult not to get discouraged when reading reports such as the “Women in the Workplace,” by McKinsey&Company and LeanIn.Org—where we see little progress on diversity in the corporate world over the last few years. But let’s zoom out a bit to 20 years ago when I entered the tech world. I remember only seeing 1 or 2 women engineers in any given team. In the past few years, I’ve not only worked with many but have also been fortunate to work with many women leaders.

When I look through a wider lens, I can better see the great progress made and feel more positive. With the influx of women-focused organizations, like Women In Cloud and female-founded companies, I’m more optimistic than ever. I truly believe the next few years will be marked by exponential results.

Even in my own business, at Dream Job Catcher, I’ve noticed a positive shift. I regularly talk to recruiters and over the past few years, there has been a significant increase in women negotiating for higher compensation. One recruiter from a Fortune 500 company says that every time a candidate asks for more, she is able to present a higher package. If they don’t ask, the original offer stays in tact.

More than half of our clients are women. One thing that’s pretty consistent is that they read job descriptions literally—often asking “have I done this exactly?” Whereas, most men read the bulleted lists as “Can I do this?” And the latter is the better way to approach the list—as well as it’s based on other experiences that are parallel to the role.

This is just one of many examples where I help our clients realize their full potential by focusing on their strengths. We work together on establishing the right mindset and overcome limiting beliefs. We also partner to determine your dream opportunity, which I define as an opportunity you love every day—and then create an action plan to make it become a reality. There’s nothing more empowering than taking ownership of your career & life and making it happen!

We’re extremely excited to sponsor the Women In Cloud Summit. 

Please stop by our booth or attend the Career & Life Transitions roundtable.

 

Credit: Julie Chase, CEO of Dream Job Catcher

Clearing The Path For Female Entrepreneurs By Gavriella Schuster

I look forward to joining the Women in Cloud community on Saturday, Jan 26th, where female entrepreneurs from many facets of the tech industry are coming together to invest in themselves, to recharge their energy, and be inspired by a community of like-minded women leaders, sponsors, and allies.

The data is clear, female technology entrepreneurs are outnumbered and underfunded and we need that to change.

What can enterprise leaders do to help? Here are  five ideas:

  1. Investigate – Look for places within your supply chain where women-led suppliers are under-represented.  Examine your application process for requirements that may not be inclusive.
  2. Analyze and Take Action – Measure the mix of women in your tech communities and create practices and norms that encourage women to feel welcomed, valued and involved.
  3. Seek Broad Support – Look for support from across your company’s communities. The women in your organization should not be the only ones to bear the burden of driving the fixes we need. Get everyone involved, and set-up women in the company to be strategic advisors and mentors.
  4. Share the Voice of Women – Ensure the female perspective is shared in your feedback systems and deliberately reach-out to women-led communities to include their point of view.
  5. Go Beyond – Sharing advice and mentoring women in your organization is important. But for greater impact, create true pathways for women business decision makers to take active steps toward engagement with your organization and business opportunities.

I can’t wait to speak with all of you who are attending the Women in Cloud Summit. I’m excited to hear your stories, learn from your journey, and get ideas about how we can make things better together.  I’ll be joined by other industry leaders who share my passion and energy for helping female entrepreneurs step into the cloud opportunity.

If you haven’t yet registered for the event, here’s the link to reserve your spot.  Tell your friends, colleagues, leaders, investors, communities.  Let’s take the time to make this investment in ourselves together.

 

#WomenInCloud #SheSoars

Credit: Gavriella Schuster

The Importance of Woman-Centered Spaces By Toni Colman

 My grandmother always said the biggest business deals were made on the golf course. When I looked around at the majority-male 2016 WTIA Golf Tournament, her words reverberated in my mind. How many women were missing out on forming valuable industry connections that day? Later, WTIA – the non-profit I work for as Director of Member Relations – received feedback from people who echoed my concerns. The desire to see women participate in the tournament was there, but it wasn’t actually translating to the golf course even though, at least technically, all genders were welcome at the event. It was clear that despite the great strides women have made in the professional sphere since my grandmother first began forming her observation, the imbalance I was witnessing wasn’t going to fix itself. It would take intentional, strategic action.

 I decided to form the tournament’s first women-only training group and team. I rounded up eight members and we met up once a week for six weeks and learned how to play golf. We drank beer, ate snacks, and worked on our skills in a pressure-free environment. Once the tournament rolled around, however, we were hit with a dose of reality. One man asked a teammate what hole she was working at, assuming she wasn’t there to play in the tournament; another asked a woman if she could connect him to one of the partners at her company, not considering the fact the woman herself might be a partner (she was). Someone else expressed frustration at us for going the wrong way on the lawn, and other men gave us unsolicited coaching advice. For better or for worse, we weren’t exactly surprised by these uncomfortable interactions. After all, changing people’s biases doesn’t happen overnight. The all-women team members agreed that it was a beneficial learning experience overall, and wanted to continue making male-dominated spaces more woman-centered.

 

To that end, I next put together a women’s poker tournament. Poker is another activity typically coded as masculine, which means few women learn it and those who do can be averse to playing it since they’ll likely be playing with men. (Fact: Significantly more women play poker online than in-person, probably for this reason.) The interest in the event was staggering—75 women ended up participating. The turnout reaffirmed my belief that many women were interested in doing traditionally “manly” things, as long as intentional spaces were created for them to feel comfortable in. Being the only woman on the golf course or at the poker table can be a daunting experience, and those spaces will remain male-dominated if we are only relying on women to brave such spaces independently.

These experiences have opened my eyes to exactly what it will take to challenge the ubiquity of professional, male-dominated spaces. I’m taking all I’ve learned to my company so we can use it to best empower women in tech. WTIA is committed to creating intentional, professional spaces for women where networking and growth can flourish without being stifled by the pervading cultural norms that discourage women from full participation and therefore maintain the gender imbalance. If you care about doing this work with us, contact me at toni@washingtontechnology.org and tell me how you want to shake things up or come see me at the Women in Cloud Summit on January 26th to build your network and expand your tribe!

Credit: This article was written by Toni Colman, Director of Member Relations, Washington Technology Industry Association

[OPPORTUNITY] Transform people’s lives by teaching technology course with LinkedIn Learning

We are so excited to partner with Linkedin Learning to provide an opportunity for Women In Cloud Network to create technology courses. Are you an experienced technology professional with a passion to teach and share your expertise? If you have the knowledge to share, Linkedin Learning is ready to partner with you. Linkedin Learning team is ready to collaborate with cloud computing professionals to create video training courses to address the rapidly-growing audience.

LinkedIn is active in many facets of the Women In Technology movement, and LinkedIn Learning is working hard to realize diversity among our hundreds of instructors reflective of the real world.

They have got a platform & audience; they would love to help boost your voice and your position of leadership in the world’s tech communities so that others can follow. That’s one way to make a difference, together, in the work we do every day.

If your skills lie in one of these areas and you’re excited to share your knowledge with others, it is time to get connected with them!

  • Cloud infrastructure administration
  • Cybersecurity principles
  • Infrastructure architecture
  • Security architecture
  • Cloud migration best practices
  • Experience in an AWS, Azure, or GCP cloud environment

If you’re interested, please send an email with a little bit of information about yourself (including a link to your LinkedIn profile if you have one), and the tech topic area you want to teach others about, to sweiss@linkedin.com.

[Please note: this is not a full-time, staff position. It is a part-time, contract position creating tech training video courses for our online learning platform.]

About LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn Learning develops online learning courses on tech, business, and creative topics by some of the best experts in the world.

Some of our instructors are well known right now. Others are tomorrow’s community leaders.

And we believe the diversity of the world’s population needs to manifest in the experts we partner with.

https://www.linkedin.com/learning/

At LinkedIn Learning, we believe in connecting people to opportunity by sharing knowledge. With millions of LinkedIn members, your voice and expertise can make a difference.

Thanks for what you do.