“Over the past two years of my life, even though I’ve become a pro at navigating the land mines of boundary setting, bureaucracy and judgement in Silicon Valley, there are some occasions when I feel ultimately defeated. This is one of them.
This past week I was banned from one of my favorite conferences because I wouldn’t have sex with one of the organizers. Given that this is the third time a similar situation has happened in a year’s time, I’m learning how to swallow this pill of injustice without throwing up every time.”
While you may think this type of behavior is a rare occurrence from an occasional bad apple, the truth is that it’s far more prevalent that most people are willing to admit. I’ve had private conversations with many women in the technology industry about similar experiences they’ve had, some tales more gut-wrenching than others.
Let me be clear: this type of behavior is unacceptable and wrong, no exceptions. There’s a difference between dating/mutual attraction and using a position of power to discriminate against the opposite gender. It’s something I learned as I have matured in my professional life. That’s why I want to fight this type of discrimination with all the resources at my disposal. Women shouldn’t have to be the only ones standing up for their right to equal treatment.
To close out this post, I am embedding one of my favorite talks. It’s by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg on why we have so few women leaders: