Whenever I walk around at a flagship WordCamp, I am really proud of the diversity of people I see represented there. Of course, there’s always room for improvement, but compared with any other tech conference, the WordPress community is much more inclusive, welcoming, and gender diverse. The lines for the women’s bathrooms are the longest of all tech conferences. However, in the boardrooms of WordPress companies, the gender diversity of the people is….. well…. different.
During the acquisition process of Yoast, we met with many different leadership teams of companies in and outside of the WordPress world. In many cases, I was the only woman in those meetings, while most of the other participants were middle-aged white men.
It seems to be that the higher you climb on the corporate ladder, the less gender-diverse the group tends to be. Of course, there are exceptions here (both Newfold Digital as well as WPengine are led by an excellent female CEO). But, women are severely underrepresented in leadership positions. Only 44 of the Fortune 500 companies are women-led. Women globally are paid about 20 percent less than men. Unfortunately, the WordPress world is no exception here.
I know we can’t change the world today and immediately put more women in charge. But it’s good to stay aware of the lack of gender diversity in our boardrooms. And I strongly believe that we need to give more room to our role models on stage. Let’s listen to and learn from women who thrive in leadership roles. Let’s celebrate those leading WordPress women so that others will want to follow in their footsteps.
PS: I love the mentoring initiative of WPincludes.me.