International Women’s Day 2023: Embrace Equity

Today, we celebrate International Women’s Day. The theme for 2023 is Embrace Equity as we work towards true inclusion.

Equity acknowledges that people don’t begin life in the same place, and that circumstances can make it more difficult for people to achieve the same goals.

Inequity affects many people, but most commonly historically it has marginalized communities such as women, people of color, disabled people, the economically disadvantaged, and those from the LGBTQ+ community.

The goal of equity is to change systemic and structural barriers that get in the way of people’s ability to thrive.  – IWD

It’s important to remember that everyone has different circumstances and therefore have unique experiences of the world. Equity recognises this and strives to allocate opportunities with the aim of reaching true equality.

We want to take a moment to speak with the talented women on the Crucible team to find out more about their own personal journeys, barriers and hopes for the future.

In talks with the women at Crucible

What do you do and how did you get to where you are now?

As a Digital Project Manager at Crucible, I work with designers, developers and clients to achieve project goals.

As a PM my role is to join up the dots in a sequence of events. I plan and foresee the pitfalls, outcomes, and events of each project, and I support the client and team to provide solutions and to create order to be able to reach these goals. My education and career began in men’s tailoring and moved towards e-commerce. I studied fashion and went on to study men’s tailoring and pattern cutting.

Throughout my twenties, I worked for a handful of high-end retailers and fashion houses but I quickly fell out of love with the industry. I worked alongside developers and project managers and found myself contemplating a similar career path. I enjoy understanding how things work and working with people to reach goals gives me a lot of satisfaction, so project management seemed like a natural next step.

What were some of the challenges or barriers you faced when starting in the web design/tech industry?

I’m one of a few female PMs I know, I don’t have a huge amount of female leadership to take inspiration from. Of the PMs I’ve worked with before only 1 out of 5 of them was a woman. Adjusting to a male-dominated industry took a bit of time, and with the help of a female mentor, I now understand that difference is great, and women provide a hugely beneficial perspective, which can only be a good thing.

What do you do and how did you get to where you are now?

I work in performance marketing here at Crucible, where I am responsible for managing our clients paid marketing activities. I am originally from El Salvador, but I decided to study abroad and finish my studies in London.

While I was at university, I was still deciding what I wanted to major in. I had a couple of internships that helped me gain more experience and clarity on what I wanted to pursue. It wasn’t easy at times, but I am happy to have found a role where I enjoy what I do, and that at the same time, gives me the opportunity to challenge myself.

What were some of the challenges or barriers you faced when starting in the web design/tech industry?

Back home, when I was growing up, there was not much knowledge of the tech industry, or how to pursue a career in tech. That, combined with the lack of opportunities in this field, were some of the reasons that made me decide to look for more opportunities and study abroad.

It was definitely not easy at the beginning, but I knew that it was an opportunity I couldn’t miss. Now looking back, I am glad I took it because every step along the way has led me to be where I am, and I am so grateful for this experience. It has made me learn and grow so much in the process. Stepping out of your comfort zone will be challenging, but so rewarding in the long run that it will make every effort and sacrifice worth it.

What do you do and how did you get to where you are now?

I’m part of the Digital Design team here at Crucible, and I’m responsible for the UI Design and Brand Identity of some of our projects. It was a long winded journey for me, after my university studies I didn’t have a clear idea of what I wanted to do, there were so many possibilities and I wasn’t sure I was good enough to really pursue a career in design.

It took me a while to understand what I was truly interested in and that’s when I discovered the amazing world of UI and UX design. It gave me the meaning I was looking for in a job and the confidence that what I was doing actually had a purpose.

What were some of the challenges or barriers you faced when starting in the web design/tech industry?

The biggest challenge I had, above all at the beginning, was asking for help. It was the hardest step for me, because since university we were taught that our work would define who we are or our place in the design world, so I felt the burden of others’ opinions and the difficulty of trying to do everything on my own!

I really struggled at times, but when I went asking for support, I found that the community around digital design is very friendly and not judgemental. The fact that people come from different backgrounds and experiences, helps open the communication and collaboration between individuals, which is something I felt the lack of in my previous job roles as a graphic or interior designer.

I asked for advice from people close to me, and also to someone I barely knew for what books to read, how to improve my portfolio, suggestions on projects I was working on. I found that everyone was very happy to share their knowledge and that’s when I started really growing and becoming more confident in my decision process. That’s why I think it’s so important to ask for help and I encourage everyone to seek advice or support of any kind when they feel stuck!

What do you do and how did you get to where you are now?

I am the Marketing Manager at Crucible and I am responsible for the marketing strategy & execution for the business. I was born and raised in Indonesia so a career in tech wasn’t even on the radar when I was growing up.

When I moved to the UK, my first job was at a company where the three leaders were all women. This gave me hope and something to strive for.

I started surrounding myself with a network of talented people and was lucky to have worked with some amazing mentors. My mentors were pivotal in helping guide me throughout my career. They gave me the tools to speak up, be prepared and value my own personal goals.

Now, I am happy to say that I am in a role where I feel valued and my ideas genuinely make an impact.

What were some of the challenges or barriers you faced when starting in the web design/tech industry?

Growing up, I wasn’t given the tools, guidance or push towards a career in tech. I had a small view of what my career could look like and it was in industries I didn’t really care about. I spent a lot of my early career trying to figure out where I fit in. There were lots of trying things on and freelance work but inevitably I realised I loved working with data to formulate creative ideas.

Now, I am confident that I am in the right industry for me. My hope is that as more women speak out about their journeys – it inspires the younger generation to be brave and build a career they truly love.

At Crucible we’re privileged to have a vibrant and diverse workforce, and in a sector that is traditionally male dominated, building an equitable workplace is extremely important to us. We are keen to champion women in STEM on a broader scale; our female colleagues contribute so much to the success of our agency. We are proud to have 40% of our small team comprised of women – and while this isn’t enough, we are committed to achieving true equity soon, in line with this year’s IWD mission. – Craig Slade, Founder of Crucible

If you’ve been inspired by any of the stories in this article and would like to get in touch with anyone on the Crucible team, do get in touch! We hope you all have a wonderful and inspiring International Women’s Day.

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