Monday, July 2, 2012

GHC Bloggers moved to Grace Hopper Celebration website!

This year's GHC Bloggers has moved to the Grace Hopper Celebration website! We will be publishing our first post soon.

Visit http://gracehopper.org/2012/ghc-bloggers/ for the latest blog posts for this year's conference!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Janet's Writing Blog

Please visit my new blog where I talk about stories, writing, and presenting.

Friday, December 16, 2011

We are on this Journey Together

My heartfelt thanks go out to all of the women and men who made the 2011 Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing Conference a resounding success. It’s amazing how one conference can be so energizing! I was fortunate to attend and participate in several of the conference events.

GHC 2011’s theme of “What If…” was timely – What if we asked for forgiveness instead of permission? What if we used our collective wisdom more collaboratively and effectively? Women make more than 70% of consumer buying decisions. What if we used our voices to influence the products we build and buy? What if we delivered the best products and the best user experience bar none? What if we used our collective buying power to influence what we won't buy?

For those of you who have had the good fortune to attend GHC, take the professional development skills that you developed at the conference and put them to work. Practice your elevator speech, hone your brand, and bring your highest self to work every day. As Sheryl Sandberg put it, “Lean in.” Reach out across corporate and organizational boundaries. Pick up the phone instead of sending email. Build relationships and break down boundaries. Pay it forward, and reciprocate when someone reaches out to you. Use reward systems appropriately to thank those who have helped you hit a major milestone, blow past a roadblock, or facilitate collaboration. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”
As you bask in your GHC experience, consider reflecting on the conversations and topics that you found most engaging. What sparks of interest were ignited? What would make next year’s conference even better? What new connections did you make? Now is the best time to jot down those ideas, and send a brief email to people you met that you’d like to collaborate with on a topic for next year, and get started. The 2012 GHC “Call for Participation” will go out in January 2012, and your proposal submission offers a tremendous opportunity to network, share your expertise, your passion and your career path with up-and-coming talent; talent we’d love to bring to our organizations. The theme for GHC 2012 is “Are We There Yet?” This too, will be an opportunity as a community of women in technology to consider what work still needs to be done. As technical thought leaders and change agents, we set the bar for generations to come. We can all put our unique experiences, perspectives and collaborative skills to work to make our companies more agile in a world that is ever-changing.

One more parting thought: If there was one person in your organization that you could bring with you next year, male or female, who would it be? In addition to female leaders like Patricia McDonald of Intel and Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook, senior male leaders from many companies were present, visible and welcomed: Justin Rattner of Intel, Alan Eustace of Google, Gabriel Silberman from CA Labs, Mark Bregman of Neustar, Mike Shroepfer of Facebook, Tayloe Stansbury of Intuit and Bill Laing from Microsoft. Justin, Alan and Mark serve on the Anita Borg Institute Board of Trustees. Gabriel and Bill participated as panelists for a plenary session, “Partnering with Executive Leaders for Shared Vision and Career Growth”; Mark, Alan, Mike and Tayloe participated as panelists for a session “What If… There Were More Women in Technology? The Business Case for Diversity.” To “get GHC”, you have to “go to GHC.” It’s an experience like no other – especially for men, who are in the overwhelming minority. It takes a strong male leader to move out of his comfort zone for three days of participation, having candid yet engaging conversations over a spectrum of topics, but the rewards are incomparable. Conference participation also creates an awareness of the challenges women still face and opens opportunities for real insights about what it is like to be a woman in technology. We are key to change in our companies, but we need more male leaders to step up and spend time listening to us and learning from us. We are on this journey together.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

East or West - GHC is the best!

If you had told me last year at GHC 2010 in Atlanta that about one year later I would be sitting in Bangalore attending the 2nd annual Grace Hopper Conference India, I wouldn't have believed a word of it. But here I am, one of the few lucky enough to have the opportunity to attend GHC on two different continents!

I first heard about GHC through my fellow WISE members at Carleton University in Canada, where I was completing my Masters while working in the telecommunications industry. GHC 2010 proved to be a great learning and networking experience and when I made the decision to move to Bangalore this year, I regretted what I thought would be the lack of such forums for women in computing here in India. Cue the pleasant surprise at the fact that GHC India had been launched in 2010 and that planning was underway for the 2011 edition. I immediately got in touch with the folks at ABI and they were able to find a way for me to be involved as a volunteer. Woot!

In just half a day's worth of keynotes and sessions, I am already finding that the essence of the conference remains the same whether it be in the US or in India - a celebration of the achievements and capabilities of women in computing, a conference with superior sessions on technology, management, and personal/professional development, and, most importantly, a forum for technical women to meet each other.

I'm so glad to be back at GHC and am looking forward to all the next two days have in store!

I will be blogging and tweeting(@shrutsats) throughout the conference as well as posting session notes on the conference wiki.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

What to Pack for GHC North America

Whether it's your first Grace Hopper Celebration or your fifth, every conference is a new experience, so we've put together a short list of "must pack" items to make sure that you come prepared for this year's conference in Portland!

1. Umbrella and Rain Gear We're expecting rain in Portland in November, so be sure to come prepared with an umbrella, rain coat, boots, or anything else that you need to keep yourself dry on your way to and from the Oregon Convention Center.

2. Layers, layers, layers With outdoor temperatures in Portland currently predicated in the range of 41*F to 52*F (5*C to 11*C) for the conference days, and the convention center indoor temperature set to 72*F (22*C), you'll want to have plenty of layers to keep warm and adjust accordingly. During our planning trip in August, we found the convention center chillier than expected, so you'll want to have layers to wear indoors as well.

3. Business Cards and Resume
In order to follow up on those connections you'll be making at the Grace Hopper Celebration, be sure to bring along your business cards. Take stock now to make sure you have plenty and then don't forget to pack them in your bag. And be sure to bring copies of your resume to have on hand when you visit exhibit booths and speak with sponsors.

4. Comfortable Shoes
With packed conference days, you'll want to have comfortable shoes to keep you on your feet and walking around the convention center. You'll also want to be sure to wear comfortable shoes to Sponsor Night on Friday so that you can dance to our DJ!

5. Camera
Capture all of the memories--don't forget to bring your camera to the conference.

6. Laptop... Or Just Visit the Cyber Center
Many attendees choose to bring their laptops to the Grace Hopper Celebration, and there will be free wireless internet sponsored by Juniper Networks. If you decide not to, you can access the internet and use a computer at the Cyber Center in Exhibit Hall C, sponsored by the Anita Borg Institute.

Are there any recommendations you would add?