Delightful Ethical Digital

08th March 2018

Our women in tech: Abi

This International Women’s Day, we asked the incredible women who work at Fat Beehive how they’ve got to where they are and what their advice is for women at the start of their career in the tech and digital sectors. Hear why Client Strategy Manager Abi’s top piece of advice is to try out as many things as possible…

What do you do?

I’m the Client Strategy Manager for Fat Beehive. I’ve recently transitioned into this role after a year and a few months learning the ropes of agency life as an Account Manager at Fat Beehive. My days are full of Google Analytics reporting, SEO and content strategy development, brainstorming with clients and devising road maps for how to turn great ideas into website reality.

Why did you start in digital/tech?

I had absolutely zero intention of starting a career in digital/tech! It wasn’t until I got introduced to Google Analytics (my real love!) and website content editing by the lovely digital team at SOS Children’s Villages UK (thanks Jamie and Jamie!) where I interned while at Uni that I really considered it as an option. From there it just kind of snowballed as I realised the real impact that a great website and digital presence can have on charities and their causes.

How have you got to where you are?

Constant learning and support from fantastic digital mentors have really been the keys to me getting where I am today. While digital has been an aspect of every job/role I’ve had since that first internship, it didn’t become my ‘thing’ until I was offered the opportunity to go back to SOS Children as their Website Editor in 2015. I made a conscious effort to learn everything possible about digital from the other (very knowledgeable!) members of the team there. I also got stuck into online HTML & CSS courses, Google Analytics, SEO and UX webinars and workshops and absorbed as much information as possible from blogs such as Moz, Kissmetrics and Search Engine Watch. Importantly, I was given the space and support to put the things I was learning into practice and try different things out and learn from doing. I definitely wouldn’t have got the job I’ve got now had I not taken this time to up-skill myself on these things and been trusted to implement them.

What advice would you give your younger self or other young women starting out?

Start with a broad-base – try out all the different aspects of digital and then slowly build your expertise in an area or two. Not pigeon-holing myself too early has meant I’ve been able to try a whole raft of things – from content editing, social media management and email marketing to search engine optimisation, Adwords and Analytics. Trying out all these things has really showed me which aspects I really enjoy – and am good at, allowing me to slowly build a career focusing on those bits.

How do you think tech should change to encourage more women to start out?

This is perhaps bigger than the tech sector, but I think companies (and charities!) need to be willing to take a chance when they’re hiring and look for those women who have the potential to grow into a role and the work ethic to push themselves and learn new things. It’s too easy to hire people who shout the loudest, ooze confidence and talk the smoothest talk. Part of this, I feel, is about how job adverts are worded and publicised – companies need to really think how they design a job advert and the corresponding impact this may have on the sort of applications they get. In my experience, women are far less likely to apply for a job if they don’t meet every single one of the role ‘requirements’ whereas men are perhaps more likely to push themselves forward for roles that they aren’t necessarily particularly well-qualified for just because they meet a couple of the requirements and have a more confident attitude. I think presentation, tone, wording and flexibility in job adverts together with thoughtfulness when it comes to their promotion could really encourage greater take-up among women.

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