Interview: Women in Gaming [Part 2]
The second of our women in gaming series, Kajal Verma, art director, speaks with EGR about her thoughts on women in the gaming industry. She says a lot more still needs to be done to encourage women to opt for IT and tech roles as well as to achieve equality.
The global online gambling industry is fully aware that more needs to be done when it comes to diversity, inclusion and workplace equality. This is certainly the case for the number of women working in key roles across IT, technology, design and at the executive level.
As a woman in gaming, my experience is that the going can be tough and at times I have felt the need to work harder to be taken seriously by my peers. I have also found that industry events are often tailored more for men which means female attendees can and do feel out of place. That said, things are changing and there really is a huge opportunity for women looking to enter the sector in tech, IT and design roles to truly shine. This is because organisations are becoming increasingly aware of the upsides to having a balanced and inclusive workforce, and that women are just as talented, skilled and dedicated as men.
Women also bring different skills to the table; softer skills that are essential when it comes to boosting morale and motivating members of the team. I find that on the whole women are more open, approachable and naturally skilled when it comes to communication. Key qualities when it comes to fostering a buoyant team spirit.
Women also have strong intuition skills which allow them to solve problems in a different way to their male colleagues and to come up with new solutions. This in turn creates more innovation and creativity, particularly in the areas of tech and IT in which things have often been done in a certain way for a long time now. With this in mind, I believe that online gambling organisations need to do more to encourage women into the sector as some of the brightest female minds lack self-belief.
In general, society tends to have the opinion that men can achieve anything and the seed for this idea is planted during school and university. But this creates a mindset of limitation among women, many of whom are just as capable as men when it comes to working in important roles in IT, tech and design. This is compounded by the fact that these sectors have been and still are male dominated, which is pushing women in other directions when it comes to their careers.
This is a travesty and I am happy to see that a growing number of women are being welcomed into such roles with forward-thinking online gambling companies such as Push Gaming.
To encourage more women into gaming, I suggest that organisations do the following:
- Organise events and talks for women in gaming where females in the sector can talk about opportunities and challenges, successes and failures. These events create a safe space for women to express themselves openly and honestly, and to also discover that they are not alone.
- Social media posts from companies in the sector need to be more gender sensitive. Women are still being sexualised and glamorised across the industry and this needs to change. Of course, it is not just down to the industry itself to encourage more women into IT, tech and design roles – schools, colleges and universities also need to play their part.
This could include offering scholarships and bursaries to women wanting to study IT, tech and design while also providing them with assistance when it comes to gaining employment in the industry.
Apart from that, women just need to realise they are as capable as men of landing their dream job in IT, tech or design. So take the leap of faith and pave the way for other women to follow.