Please no men's rounds more: Women on the podium!
'Speakerinnen.org' is a platform for women who want to share their knowledge, experiences and opinions at conferences and panel discussions. At the same time, the database is a contact point for all organizers of conferences who are looking for a speaker. Anne Roth, one of the initiators, often criticized at events that no female speakers were invited. "Then comes the reaction very quickly, there would be no expert for that, or would I know about one?"
Anne Roth was sure that there were enough experts - also in quantum physics, in IT and in politics. You just have to make it visible. On March 8, 2014, World Women's Day, she started her project, and just over a month later, more than 400 women have registered on Speakerinnen.org, and nearly 200 more are in the works.
A feminist project? "In any case," explains the intiator. "That does not mean that women and men are always the same in everything, but it does mean that women are no stupider than men, and there is no reason why more men than experts are perceived as women." Proof of this are the many different women who have already registered. Five speakers introduce themselves:
Sophie Passmann, Slam Poet
I am at Speakerinnen.org because there are specialists and women on every topic. However, organizers of discussions often find it difficult to find experts. Because they rarely appear in discussions and are less in the public - a vicious circle. I do not want to be a minority because of my gender. It should be self-evident to hear me without having to take a "feminine" look at things.
Why do not many women advocate for more presence? Because there are too few role models. Of course, many men have important things to say on many topics. However, public-law talk shows like coming out with five men and one woman. I do not want quota, I want the insight that it's stupid to give away half the potential of a country.
Manuela Vollmann, Managing Director
Women have a lot of skills and yet are less present in public than men. In Austria, for example, The Austrian Women's Ring (ÖFR) has made it clear that television has more women in the programs to speak. That's why I'm also personally interested in sharing my experiences as a speaker, and hopefully contribute as an expert and a woman to something being changed. For me professionally and my company, visibility is very central. The more effective we are, the more we are asked about our competences. Especially women recognize us again and specifically ask for courses, qualifications and counseling. There are several reasons why some women do not campaign for more presence: women are often more interested in the cause itself than in public presence. They are often unaware that their theme is becoming more visible in a media-driven world through their own presence.
Public presence makes it possible to advance my subject, my passion and to be successful in the matter. It is still the case that girls in Austria are not encouraged to show what they know and know. There is a lack of role models. For our children to see that women have something to say, more women are needed in the public media.
Anna Aridzanjan, junior journalist
I am interested in lectures, panels and panel discussions on journalism. Often, however, there is a clear male surplus. As if only older men had the say in journalism, even today. Speakerinnen.org convinced me because the initiators did not complain but did something. It's about creating a network, a pool of experts. So that no organizer of panels can talk out more. I would like to enrich this pool with my knowledge.
Public presence at work means everything to me. Especially today it is important for young journalists to attract attention. Good research and writing alone is no longer enough. The keyword is "self-marketing". Most of the time I'm visible thanks to Twitter. The interaction with each other is different than in real life. There is no hierarchy. Since the intern can answer the editor in a flippant way, everything is possible.
If women shy away from public presence, then for different reasons. Some do not want a presence at all. Others are kept on the job by testosterone top dogs. A journalist once told me: "The true personnel decisions are still being made at Pinkelbecken." And then there are women who have been persuaded that they will not be able to get as far as their male counterparts.There are two types of reactions to this: Resigning or adopting a "now and more!" Attitude.
Doris Aschenbrenner, computer scientist
I registered with Speakerinnen.org because on many podium discussions I was the only woman or annoyed me as a spectator, that no woman "discussed" up there. I do not mind being asked for lectures "because I'm a woman". I am requested because I am competent AND a woman. Occupational visibility is incredibly important, whether in the academic, business or academic careers. It presupposes the attitude of wanting to have a voice and being able to co-opt, and always requires courage.
I have to constantly show that I am good. Mostly it's not threatening for me, it's more motivating for me. I've met a lot of "steam talkers" (mostly men) who have an unshakeable confidence and little expertise. Obviously you can get very far with that? this is not an example. In my professional field, women are very rare. As a girl I already wondered why otherwise only guys in the field of technology participated in "Jugend forscht". I think many women do not dare enough, that's what they were taught. They are not aware of their own strengths and do not put them out enough. All this can be trained. We have to ask ourselves what needs to be changed to stop socializing girls so unfavorably.
Kaja Otto, Life Coach
When I saw Speakerinnen.org's first tweet, I knew I wanted to be there. The topic "Women on the podiums!" I am quite present. I like to be part of an impressive list of exciting women. Visibility is important in my job. It makes me tangible for the people. Visibility means staying in touch with my clients and stimulating them. For this I use beside Facebook and Twitter also Whatsapp or Threema. Especially in a professional field like mine, besides the professional qualification, it is about the personality. That's why I understand competition as inspiration.
As a coach I get together a lot with people. By now, 90 percent of my clients are female. That sharpens the view for the own sex. And for me it is clear: men and women are definitely different, ticking in their rhythm and acting according to individual standards. For us women, that means finally getting into our power, our being different? to see positive, and to recognize avoidable weaknesses as strengths.
Many women do not advocate for more presence because they are often self-critical perfectionists. While they are still considering how they work, the man has already begun to talk. But it is important that perfection does not become procrastination. The famous 80/20 rule states that 80 percent of the power is sufficient. The last 20 percent cost the most work in the end. If more women followed this rule, more women would be present. In this sense, I wish for more women with the courage to fill in the gap, according to the motto "Just do it!"