What is International Women’s Day?

International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global celebration of women that started in 1908 and was reinvigorated in the 1970s for equal pay, equal economic opportunity, equal legal rights, reproductive rights, subsidized child care, and the prevention of violence against women. 

Today, the push for equality continues but we also celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. We are moving to a very exciting time in history where the world now “expects” equity, diversity, and inclusion. Companies recognize that gender balance is not solely a women’s issue, but also an economic issue, and are actively incorporating education and training to their employees, partners, and clients on this important matter.

What is the theme for International Women’s Day 2021?

IWD Tech Mission: To celebrate digital advancement and champion the women forging innovation through technology. #ChooseToChallenge

“A challenged world is an alert world. Individually, we’re all responsible for our own thoughts and actions – all day, every day.

“We can all choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality. We can all choose to seek out and celebrate women’s achievements. Collectively, we can all help create an inclusive world.

From challenge comes change, so let’s all choose to challenge.”

The 2021 UN theme for International Women’s Day is “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world”, highlighting the impact that girls and women worldwide had as health care workers, caregivers, innovators, and community organizers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The hashtag will be #IWD2021 and #InternationalWomensDay.


Women have innovated the tech space for a long time. 

Many of us have heard of Ada Lovelace, the woman who is referred to as the “world’s first computer programmer”, and Hedy Lamarr, the actress who inspired Wi-Fi, GPS, and Bluetooth technology, but did you know that women also:

  • Helped create the original search engine, Elizbeth Feinler
  • Calculated the trajectory of the first-ever US space flight, Katherine Johnson
  • Invented the algorithm that made the internet possible, Radia Perlman
  • Helped lay the foundation for space shuttle launches all while trailblazing for gender and racial diversity in STEM, Annie Easley

Today, women are 34.4% of the workforce in the 5 largest tech companies on the planet (Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft) and have had a 24% increase in the C-Suite over the past 5 years tech-wide. 


Does International Women’s Day still matter?

Yes! There’s no place for complacency and achieving gender equality will take deliberate action from all of us. Women still encounter the glass ceiling in the senior leadership positions but worse yet is that there is a “broken rung” when they begin to climb the corporate ladder. For every 100 entry-level men promoted or hired into management, only 72 white women are hired for similar positions. Make that 68 for Latina women and 58 for Black women. 


Why AchieveUnite cares:

As a proud women-run organization in technology, it has been one of our driving principles to ensure everyone – regardless of ethnicity, race, faith, gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation – has an equal voice. AchieveUnite is proud to challenge and close the gaps that are keeping women from achieving their fullest potentials. 


What YOU can do:

Especially during a time of working from home with kids, aging parents, and health care needs in the mix, you can build more flexibility into your workstreams. Hire more women at the entry levels and promote them when they deserve it. Studying women’s work habits and communication styles will help you utilize those skills to better your teams and show your employees their voices are being heard.

Help your women leaders grow. Courses like ACE – Leadership by Influence will help the women in your organization develop authentic leadership, strong collaboration, and build empowerment within a peer group to be supported in advancing their skills, network and careers. 


How can you share knowledge with your company about IWD?

International Women’s Day is a wonderful reminder of the importance of women leaders in our organizations. Find information on women in tech: https://www.internationalwomensday.com/Mission/Tech