If you want to hear about the heroic and inspiring stories of women who’ve prevailed despite the obstacles laid in front of them, how they’ve forged paths for others to follow, or how they’ve contributed to advancements of civilizations and our modern societies, you need only look to the internet. Just research “badass women” or “women’s history.”
In fact, with Women’s History Month upon us, there is a plethora of information at our fingertips to inspire, to challenge, to chart a more equitable course for all women. Here is some excellent information that has inspired us at Demandbase. We think perhaps it might resonate with you in some way, as it does for us.
Women’s History Month recognizes and celebrates women’s contributions throughout history across many disciplines from culture and entertainment, to the natural sciences and politics.
According to Wikipedia, “March is celebrated as Women’s History Month in the U.S., the U.K., and Australia, corresponding with International Women’s Day on March 8. Canada celebrates Women’s History Month in October, corresponding to Canada’s Persons Day on October 18.”
“[Women’s History Month] traces it back to March 8, 1857, when women from various New York City factories staged a protest over working conditions.” (US Census Bureau) In 1907, International Women’s Day was established to commemorate the 50th anniversary of that protest. There is some controversy over the actual origins, as no one is exactly sure if the protest actually took place. (When you get a chance, read, “The Surprising History of International Women’s Day,” by Sara Pruitt on history.com. It’s fascinating.)
In any case, as of 1975, the United Nations General Assembly officially began celebrating March 8 as International Women’s Day. In the United States, it was expanded to Women’s History Week in 1980 by Presidential Proclamation from President Jimmy Carter, and then officially expanded to Women’s History Month in 1987 by Congressional law. (Check out Women’s History Month 2021, on history.com)
According to the National Women’s History Museum, “Since 1995, each president has issued annual proclamations designating the month of March as “Women’s History Month.” And The National Women’s History Alliance selects and publishes the yearly theme.”
The theme for Women’s History Month in 2021 is actually the same one that was planned in 2020, but never took place due to COVID-19. So this year’s theme is again “Valiant Women of the Vote: Refusing to Be Silenced,” focusing on women’s political involvement and leadership. This is especially relevant this year as we now have our first woman vice president with Kamala Harris.
“As recent years have painfully indicated, inequality and sexism is still very much alive and prevalent in the United States (as well as the rest of the world). Recent research found that 42 percent of women still face gender discrimination at work. They also face the “motherhood penalty,” in which women earn less money after they become mothers while men who become fathers actually earn more. These prevailing inequities are exactly why Women’s History Month, which is recognized in March, matters so much.” —By Jo Yurcaba, “21 Fascinating Women’s History Month Facts,” in Woman’s Day, 2021.
Despite all the huge strides that have been made in regards to the representation of women in the workforce, there is still a lot of inequality in the tech industry. What’s more, it doesn’t look like this inequality will end any time soon.
As of 2018, women held only 25 percent of all the jobs in the tech industry, despite women making up almost half of the total workforce. What’s worse, this number is lower than the percentage of tech jobs held by women back in the 1980s. (National Center for Information Technology)
Some things we all can do include:
Here at Demandbase, we have an employee resource group (ERG) called Women@DB to help empower the women at our organization and beyond our walls. For the month of March, we’ve organized a number of activities and opportunities in celebration of Women’s History Month. These are open for all at Demandbase to attend, not just our badass women!
These are just some of the events that we are holding in March:
Some resources well worth exploring:
LinkedIn Group: Women in B2B Network
Groups promoting women in technology and STEM: