5 Must-Reads for Women in Tech

Share

Juliana Oswald

Juliana Oswald

Internal Communications Lead at Avenue Code

Cultivating healthy habits can be key to a successful routine, and reading is no exception.

In addition to improving critical thinking, fighting stress, and increasing imagination, reading is a wonderful way to get carried away by stories, get inspired, and learn in a unique and pleasurable way.

Why not make the most of this habit by reading inspiring stories of women who are changing the world? Join us on this list of books that can help you make an impact in your field.

 

1. Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead
Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl Sandberg, recognized as one of the ten most powerful women in the world by Forbes magazine, is a Harvard-educated executive who has held high-profile jobs such as vice president at Google and a C-level position at Meta. In 2015, the tech executive published the book “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead,” in which she investigates why women’s career growth has been stagnant for so many years, offering practical solutions for them to reach their full potential.

The book encourages women to dream big, take risks, and pursue their goals without fear. Additionally, the author shares her successes and mistakes in her career, resulting in a fundamental book for thinking about impasses and gender issues in the workplace.



2. Women in Tech: Take Your Career to the Next Level with Practical Advice and Inspiring Stories
Tarah Wheeler

Tarah Wheeler is an executive, tech, and cybersecurity author, and the writer of this fantastic book!

In “Women in Tech,” Tarah highlights a sad statistic: In 1984, 38% of computer science degrees were awarded to women, but by 2010, that number had dropped to 10%. Tarah discusses cultural unconscious gender bias and suggests ways to make the tech industry more appealing and less mysterious for women. This book is perfect for women who want to start a career in the tech market or those looking for a career boost.

 

 

3. Hardball for Women
Pat Heim, Tammy Hughes, and Susan Golant

This book is a classic! Since its publication in 1992, it has been updated and provides valuable tips for women in business. Given the predominantly male culture that many companies still have, this book shows women how to break patterns of behavior that put them at a disadvantage. This must-read book covers topics such as assertiveness, leadership, leading both men and women, building confidence, and much more.



 

4. Invisible Women
Caroline Criado Perez

How does the collection and use of data contribute to the imbalance between men’s and women’s experiences in society? And how can this data contribute to more inclusive organizations?

In this book, award-winning British feminist writer, journalist, and activist Caroline Criado Perez argues that the data collected from our experiences and observations of the world do not include women. The predominant view always considers men to be the standard and women to be atypical. Even when the data do cover the female universe, they are often ignored in practice, deepening gender inequality at its foundation.

This book is a transformative and unforgettable must-read that will change the way you see the world.

 

 

5. Innovating Women
Vivek Wadhwa and Farai Chideya

Despite comprising half of the population, only 14% of engineers in the United States are women. Innovating Women argues that the future of technology depends on the active participation of women and men working together and that women must be educated and encouraged to enter the tech sector.

Written by Vivek Wadhwa (named a “Top 100 Global Thinker” by Foreign Policy Magazine) and award-winning journalist Farai Chideya, this book features a series of essays by women leaders worldwide sharing their experiences, challenges, and stories of success and inspiration.

Hepsi Premkumar

Vice President of Strategy and Operations
Cisco

Hepsi Premkumar is the Vice President of Strategy and Operations and Chief of Staff to the General Manager of Cisco AppDynamics and Full-Stack Observability. In her role, she is responsible for navigating and driving transformative and business-critical initiatives for the organization. Hepsi manages strategy, technical program management, data insights, business operations, university hiring and talent training, and internal and executive communications teams. Hepsi has been with Cisco for 15 years and was most recently the Senior Director of Cisco Cloud Networking Technical Program Management and Operations. She also serves as the Chair of Howard University’s Computer Science and Engineering Industry Advisory Board, representing Cisco.

Panel # 1

Topic

Breaking Through: The Journey from Within

Description

This panel discussion will offer valuable insights into the personal journeys of successful tech industry leaders, their strategies for self-confidence and resilience, approaches to embracing change, promoting diversity and inclusivity, and balancing innovation with stability in an ever-evolving industry, serving as a timeless source of practical advice for aspiring professionals in the tech sector.

Rama Akkiraju

VP, Enterprise AI & Automation
NVIDIA

Rama Akkiraju has 20+ years of leadership experience at IBM as an IBM Fellow and Master Inventor. Formerly CTO of IBM Watson AI Operations, Rama developed AI services such as Personality Insights, Tone Analyzer, Emotion Analysis, and Sentiment Analysis. She holds a master’s degree in Computer Science and an MBA from New York University.

Rama has co-authored 100+ technical papers, holds 50+ issued patents and 25+ pending, and has received multiple awards, including being named one of Forbes ‘Top 20 Women in AI Research’ in 2017. In 2022, Rama was named ‘USA Industry Innovator of the Year 2022’ by Women in AI and ‘AI Industry Leader of the Year 2022’ by Women Leaders in Data & AI (WLDA).

Panel # 2

Topic

Empowering Journeys: The Path to Tech Executives

Description

The panel discussion is expected to provide a comprehensive view of leadership in the modern corporate landscape, touching upon personal growth, resilience, empowerment, diversity, innovation, and the challenges of digital transformation. The diverse experiences and strategies shared by the panelists will offer valuable insights for both aspiring and current leaders in various industries.

Jessica Wakefield

VP of Engineering and Operations
PlayStation

Jessica Wakefield is the VP of Engineering & Operations at Sony Interactive Entertainment. She leads globally diverse teams who deliver the PlayStation platform facilitating business operations, empowering decision-making, and providing crucial insights for PlayStation products and services. With over 100 million monthly active users, 47 million active subscribers and 15 million daily concurrent users for a $16+ billion-dollar business.

As a site leader and global lead for the Women @ PlayStation eNet/Employee Resource Group (ERG), she is also a notable cultural champion making PlayStation the best place to play and work. Prior to SIE, Jessica was with Intuit where she held key roles in the Consumer Tax Group and TurboTax Online Banking capabilities for Intuit. While at Intuit she went to USC’s Marshall School of Business and obtained her MBA, with an emphasis in Globalization.

In addition, Jessica is an active volunteer at her daughter’s school, Vice President of the San Diego Children’s Museum Board, and CEO of the Loving Amber Foundation, 501 (c)(3) nonprofit that raises funds and awareness for kids impacted by rare bone marrow and blood disorders.

Panel # 4

Topic

Igniting Passion: Unleashing Your Potential and a New Era in Tech

Description

The panel discussion showcased the pivotal role of passion, purpose, and leadership in the tech industry. The panelists’ insights provided valuable lessons on fostering innovation, empowerment, diversity, and inclusion, adapting to change, overcoming challenges, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance, making it an informative and inspiring discussion for both aspiring and seasoned tech leaders.

Stacy Mill

VP of IT and CISO - Run the entire IT Dept and Cybersecurity for Corporate systems
Nashville Electric Service

Stacy Mill is the VP of IT and CISO at Nashville Electric Service, responsible for all IT strategy and execution across corporate systems, including cybersecurity. She has built global teams across several industries and has held leadership roles in the State of Kansas, Spirit AeroSystems, KAR Global, and Yum. Stacy has a background in security and serves on the boards of various organizations. She enjoys spending time with her family and mentoring emerging leaders.

Panel # 4

Topic

Igniting Passion: Unleashing Your Potential and a New Era in Tech

Description

The panel discussion showcased the pivotal role of passion, purpose, and leadership in the tech industry. The panelists’ insights provided valuable lessons on fostering innovation, empowerment, diversity, and inclusion, adapting to change, overcoming challenges, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance, making it an informative and inspiring discussion for both aspiring and seasoned tech leaders.

Surbhi Kaul

VP, Global CX
Juniper Networks

With 20 years of experience leading product design, development, and strategy in Fortune 500 companies, Surbhi has built and led product and engineering teams at Google, YouTube, Netflix, and Cisco. She has launched successful products that use AI and machine learning. Currently, Surbhi leads Juniper’s Customer Experience charter, focused on creating omnichannel engagements and ML-based support capabilities. Surbhi has degrees from IIT Kanpur, Texas A&M University, and Harvard Business School. She also leads Global Inclusion & Diversity initiatives at Juniper and supports the IIT community.

Panel # 2

Topic

Empowering Journeys: The Path to Tech Executives

Description

The panel discussion is expected to provide a comprehensive view of leadership in the modern corporate landscape, touching upon personal growth, resilience, empowerment, diversity, innovation, and the challenges of digital transformation. The diverse experiences and strategies shared by the panelists will offer valuable insights for both aspiring and current leaders in various industries.

Christine Sarros

SVP, Product Development
Oracle

Christine has been with Oracle and previously SUN Microsystems for more than 25 years. As Senior Vice President of Oracle’s Enterprise Engineering organization, she is responsible for Oracle’s internal cloud transformation and delivery of multiple cloud services. Her team partners with enterprise and development organizations across the company to evolve on-premises services into native cloud solutions and leads our global migration program. In addition, Christine delivers traditional IT services for our more than 170,000 global employees.

Panel # 3

Topic

Women in Leadership: Career Evolution in the Tech Industry

Description

Diverse companies excel, boasting better performance, a knack for attracting top-notch talent, highly engaged employees, and impressive retention rates. Yet, in the tech realm, women still find themselves in the minority. Change, the driving force behind progress, calls for transformation and innovation, which, in turn, rely heavily on diversity. This dynamic forms a continuous cycle, one that particularly highlights the crucial role of women leaders in tech. Women, with their unique perspectives and experiences, have a distinctive lens through which they view and approach challenges, making them trailblazers and innovators.