"The women of tech want more women in tech"
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The women of tech want more women in tech
Welcome everyone to CNET, live at CES in our first annual Women and Tech Panel which is also open to man.
I am Molly Wood and I will be your moderator for the panel.
I am looking forward to an amazing, fascinating, exciting conversation today.
We have an incredible panel of guests and we've tried to put together a special introduction to give them really their due.
So let's have a look.
Marissa Mayer started at Google in 1999.
She was the company's 20th employee and its first women engineer.
These days, she running location and local services and in her time at Google, she's been responsible for the look and feel of Google News, GMail, Google Images and even Google Search itself.
She's one of the most powerful women in Silicon Valley and she's a big fan of Bejeweled Blitz.
Padmasree Warrior is the CTO of Cisco Systems and she was CTO of Motorola before that.
She joined Motorola as one of very few women and its Arizona facility.
And during her time as CTO, Motorola won the 2004 US National Medal of Technology.
She's been widely recognized for her creativity, influence and her promotion of Science and Technology Education especially for women.
Her role in Cisco is to evangelize what is possible and she has a team of 10,000 engineers behind her as she rides in to battle.
Catarina Fake is Co-Founder of Flicker and a highly successful serial entrepreneur.
Her most recent startup Hunch was just purchased for eBay for a reported 80 million dollars.
At just 37 years old, she was included on Time Magazine's List of the World's 100 Most Influential People.
She is a Founder/ Partner at the Founder Collective Venture Capital Fund.
She sits on the board of directors of Creative Comments, she is Chairman of the Board of Etsy and she really loves duct tape and weather.
We're all fascinated by the weather thing.
We're gonna ask about that later.
Joining, Marissa, Padmasree and Catarina on stage.
It's CNET's Reviews Editor-in-Chief Lindsay Turrentine.
Next year, she's gonna have her own video.
Lindsay has been at CNET for 12 years.
She's seen just about every phase of consumer electronics development by which I mean, she has been through all the pink gadgets and so have I, as a matter of fact.
So that may come up.
Let's get right to it because I know that you're here to hear from our amazing panel.
You know, I was reading an article.
There was an article that came up in November of 2011 in San Francisco Magazine and it was called Who is the Next Female Zuckerberg.
And it really got me thinking about sort of the state of the industry.
There seems to be a lot of attention on this question of women and tech lately and so, I just wanted to ask the panel generally where do you think...
we'll start with you Padma, where do you think we are in the industry in terms of women and tech right now?
Yeah, I think they've come a long way.
Actually feel pretty good about where women are in technology.
I think if you kinda look at two of the largest tech companies today, IBM and HP, they have women CEO's and there are a lot of amazing founders creating technology companies that have made a lot of difference in our lives.
So I mean, it's not that progress that's ever, you know, done, right?
I mean there's more we can do and we should do to get more women.
Actually I was thinking as I was walking the CES floors, am I going to be on the panel just to see some women and I would like to see more women out on the floor as well and I think that is more we can do but I do feel like in the last 10 years, we've made a lot of progress.
That magazine article that you mentioned, San Francisco Magazine ran an article about all of the new startup founders in the Valley which was a wonderful thing to see.
There were dozens and dozens of companies, some of it that I hadn't heard of...
Me too, yeah...
And it was...
I think that was Landmark magazine article for the industry.
It just showed all of the different businesses that are out there.
Some of them are...
Some of them are highly technical companies that are coming out.
Some of them are social medias.
Some of them are very consumer-oriented but it was a big variety of companies.
It was founders of all different ages, levels of experience and I was really happy to see that.
It made me a feel a lot better, you know, actually...
Yeah, it was great.
It was like okay, we're doing fine.
Yeah, I can't agree more.
I think this is a great time to be a woman in technology, be the founder, be the executive.
I think this is an incredibly exciting time in technology in general specially with the rise of mobile and I just think it's a really fast moving industry but I think that's something that makes it possible for women to move fast, catch up.
Now, you can actually come in to Computer Science late like I didn't really get in to Computers and Technology until I was in college.
But, you know, because it is a fast moving industry, it's an easy pace for you, pretty to pick things up.
So with that said, the article also had a lot of very (sobering?) statistics as well.
It said things such as there are only, I think, 4.3 of venture back companies are led by women.
There's only less than 7% of women are venture partners in venture capital firms and there's...
this is a long way for us to go still in the industry.
I mean, yes, we should always be celebrating our successes but we should never rest already.
There's still a long long way to go.
And I think the panels such as this one are great at...
I think it's really important for women to know that there are women out there and know this is a career choice and know this is a path that you can follow and that it's doable.
I have a little bit of a media perspective and I think that one of the difficulties for women is that when we put ourselves out there in the media representing technology, the response can be wildly (berry?).
There are a lot of, you know, women in media and in the technology media like Molly who have really a lot of respect and following, but I find it over and over and over again, we publish about the industry and about technology and we get public responses, really wildly sexist comments and you know, comments about appearance, comments about whether or not we have any authority to say anything about technology.
And so I think there are a lot of successful women in business but on the way up, there are a lot of barriers and there's a lot of questioning that happens on the...
at the public level.
So we really need to work on because I think if we represent then we keep doing this and we keep having this conversation, that will fade.
I hope so.
I mean I think we are very lucky.
Obviously none of us are distant (??) women in the technology industry.
We are all smart, successful, you know, we've gotten to a certain level and we're able to have this conversation with other smart, successful women but you're right.
This, I think, represents a big chunk of the women who are CES.
There is never a line for the ladies room at the Consumers Electronics Show.
And we asked ourselves going into this panel whether one of our questions was do there need to be more women at the Consumer Electronic Show and what would change about the industry if we had more women at all phases of consumer electronics and product development in general.
By women, you don't mean boot babes?
And by women, I do not mean boot babes, yeah, and how much longer do we have to endure?
You know, I think of the things that's happening in the consumer industry but broadly in the technology industry I would say is product development and product design itself is changing, right?
You know, whether...
Previously when I started this industry 20 years ago, it was very (bifurcated?) in a sense there was engineering that was done and then there was product development that wad done and then there was user experience, user design and ease of use and you know, how people use the technology (??) different feel and actually it didn't exist about...
even decade ago.
That's what's changing rapidly.
If you kinda look at how any of develop technology, develop products and what it takes to bring a successful product to a market, you really have to have skill sets that come by all these.
It's not just pure engineering.
It's not just hardware.
It's not just software.
It's user design, user experience.
We actually have sociologist now that study how our products are used especially video and what video means and how we translate.
I think this is an opportunity for women who...
and I am generalizing here.
And I think have a better scale integrating a lot of these different domains.
I think women are better at integrating across the domains and I think that's the scale that will be needed going forward in the future.
It's a great opportunity.
If you kind of looked at it from that perspective, I think, it shows like the Consumer Electronic Show is absolutely is a place where you would like to see more women.
Not only just actually designing products, actually even women that are consuming these products and what it means.
Do you feel like women are better evangelists for tech products?
I feel like there are certain products that women can very quickly generate excitement about in the marketplace and then of course, generalizing, it's really hard to have this conversation without generalizing.
We kinda started from that point in some way.
I think women like that.
You know, I think women adapt to technology in a different way.
You know, I think it's early adaption but we also look at different aspects of technology, I think, that men do, right.
When I look at a product and you look at both the artistic view of the product, as well as the engineering view of it, right?
Although I am an engineer and I am trained as a engineer, I think I have a different bent on how I review products and how I review milestones and so forth than my male counterpart.
And I think that...
I don't know if it's an evangelism but we adapt to technology in a different way.
I think if you have a product that you want to be used by a diverse user group, it really helps to actually have that diversity represent in the product design.
So one idea that I've been excited about for a while that I just so realized when I walked on the floor is there is this amazing 3-dimensional cameras that are available now and someone said to me a few months ago, you know probably someone is going to figure out how to make a 3-dimensional body, you know 3-dimensional model of a body and figure out how to try on clothes on your television screen.
And it's here.
It's actually like 200 yards that way.
It's called Body Matrix.
And I was just talking about that idea.
I know, it's (??)..
But it's called Body Matrix.
It uses the (primes?) of technology and really amazing but just yesterday, I was talking to someone about this concept and it turns out men's clothes and women's clothes are totally different.
Guys were like why would you need 3 mm accuracy?
You know, you just tell them the measurement and all the (nag?), length of the arm, you got the shirt, it's perfect and I was like well, for women like, you know, it's gotta fit in the waist, it's gotta fit here and there.
I was like fitting a women is completely different than fitting a men, I could imagine.
I didn't actually had a chance to stop and ask but I can imagine the Body Matrix team hopefully has women on that team or at least studying them really carefully.
Women are also very big social media participants and if you look at the way that media has spread around and how people learn about it from one another, it's often...
you'll see these communities that will sudden burst on the scene that will flourish suddenly.
I've worked with Etsy and Etsy is an example of that.
Etsy was a company that was started by a bunch of guys, young guys.
They are in their 20's and it was largely a company of the (??) women.
It was mostly (handmade kits?) and you look at something, like for example, like that more like Pinterest and women are incredibly good at spreading the word, at telling each other about this.
It's just sort of the...
sort of word of mouth form of marketing is extremely effective with women's products and I think that that is very effective and some of the social software and media and startups that you see out there that are directed towards women such as Pinterest and they really have an amazing growth pattern.
I actually wonder if the...
sort of the current hot technology trends don't lend themselves perfectly to getting women more involved in tech and interested in, right?
In the past 3 phase, somewhat of an interest barrier in terms of technology but you can talk to anyone on the street about using your cellphone and about using social to communicate and to consumer products and is that sort of...
is that serendipity do you think that's just gonna help or is it just, you know, the sort of the title waive of women getting as technology just becomes part of life?
Yeah, I think that's what I was talking earlier.
I think more and more technologies become multi-disciplinary, right?
I think it is.
It's a combination of hardcore engineering with soft design and ecstatic appearance and artistic ability.
Then it is multi-disciplinary.
I mean, even engineering itself is becoming multi-disciplinary.
And I think this is an area where we excel.
You know, I think the ability the move from one domain to another somewhat comes naturally to women and I think that is an opportunity for us to really get in to these fields which are traditionally more logic and you know, analytic and hard domains and I think that itself is changing.
So as domains changes, it becomes multiple disciplines coming together.
And so as marketing, all right, when you're building technology, really you are understanding or trying to understand how it's gonna be used as you're designing which is not the case training years ago, 10 years ago, and I think this is an opportunity for us to really bring diverse viewpoints in to the product.
And that's another question specifically that I think is really relevant to Consumer Electronic Show and the marketers are here.
The first part I guess is how do you market to women?
The second part of the question is do you need to market to women separately if it's not, for example, a very female-focused product?
I personally think making a good product is the best way to market to women and I think why we're seeing more excitement about consumer technology from women now or maybe I am just more excited but is it consumer technology is increasingly about communication and 10 years ago, it was about consumption.
It is consuming media, consuming television or maybe creating something at a single point but not sharing that so broadly.
Yeah, I don't know if you...
specifically, I agree.
I don't know if you specifically target a consumer product or a technology to women.
I think it is...
If it's a great product, women automatically will consume it and I think...
as I think Catarina was saying, I think we have better environment in sharing information.
I think it's just something we do.
And I think that, in a way, adds to both positive and negative, right?
If a product is not good, then I think it gives you that feedback as a product manufacturer or a designer quicker if you are marketing to that population or that segment of the population.
But if you don't and you miss that out, you don't get that feedback.
So I think that's a benefit of perhaps making sure that you're including women in the segment that you're targeting with products.
Unlike my esteemed colleagues on the panel, I did not...
I was never a programmer, I was never an engineer, I did not study CS and my background is really is in design and I came from a kind of a web design and development background.
I thought myself a little bit of code.
I was never a very good coder in fact, you know, after a certain amount of time, people would say yeah, look at my codes and say please.
And just stay out of here.
And I think the influence of Apple cannot be underestimated in the rise of the product designer.
I really think product design, you know, with all of the Apple (??) that, you know, all of us have in our pockets and on our desktops, all of them are very design-oriented.
And so, the role of women in terms of, you know, the designers and sort of the role of the product designer has sort of risen within the company.
It's no longer as much hard tech and the, you know, I think the industry has evolved in that direction, in a very positive direction for products.
I consider myself and hope to, aspire to be a product designer and designing things that people love, that people need, that people want, that people will use and that if you were able to hit that, then...
you know, men or women, it doesn't matter.
You could be, you know, it doesn't really matter.
It has this universal appeal.
Well, the other interesting points in the San Francisco Magazine article was that when I came to women and sports, women and soccer particularly, (Title 9?) was introduced in 1972 but women didn't get very excited about soccer until 1999 with the Women's Olympic Team that it takes heroes in some cases.
How are you, in the panel, how do you feel about taking that mantel?
In some cases, you do.
How do you think you'd be a hero to women who are interested in technology and do you ever see it as a burden.
I am actually very passionate about it.
I don't know how I see myself, but maybe some of these guys are my heroes.
But I think...
But you should own that?
I think that is (??).
That is value in sharing your experiences and that is something I really believe in and I think I often talk to people, I kinda share my experiences and it's not that anybody can translate your experience to theirs and it's not something you can extrapolate and say, okay, this work, this will work for me.
Therefore, it may or may not work for you but it's actually just relating a story of this is how I dealt with this situation and I think there is value in that.
And sometimes, you know, it's also makes you vulnerable when you share your story and you're talking to people about "Hen, I was really depressed when this happened" or when somebody criticized me and I felt (??) about this and then you know, I had to go, you know, absorb that, internalize that and come back the next day to work to be better.
It does make you vulnerable as a leader but I think in away it does a lot of benefit in sharing experiences with other women who may be in that point, in that stage in their career where they're doubting whether they can get to the next level or not.
One thing in that San Francisco Magazine article that stood out for me when I read it was is there is a full quote that said it's very difficult for a 25-year-old woman to call up a 45-year-old man and invite him out for a beer...
And say, I would love to get some advice on this.
It's just there is some kind of social barrier about that happening and so I think it's important that there's more and more women in technology to be available for those kinds of questions like, you know, to answer questions to...
read their blogs and sort of share that experience because there are a lot of barriers around younger women and you know, industry...
you know, kind of industry mentors who are potentially male.
It's just a slightly awkward social situation.
I agree with that.
I don't think it's about being heroes.
I think it's about being a resource for people who are getting started and also showing that there's not a stereotype.
A lot of the studies show that women has to take (??) technology or computer science because they think it's a certain culture, right?
You know, you can't (??) you stay up all night.
You, you know, eat espresso.
You know, it means covered.
You wear jeans and t-shirts.
And I think it's more about seeing all kinds of different women who can do this...
who can wear ruffles.
You can be a jock and you can still be a great computer scientist or a great technologist or a great product designer and by seeing many different people who can all do it on their own terms, you realize that you can do it on your own terms but you don't need to kinda (??) that stereotype and that culture and you can bring what you have to offer in the table.
I am thinking about the 80's era of women in business is there was a lot of...
I just remember all those horrible suits.
Shoulder pads, lots and lots of shoulder pads.
You have to wear the shoulder pads and you know, and they're back too.
Let's all boycott them together.
And there's all this research that was done that women would wear really high heels and lower their voices as they were speaking in sort of business situations.
And in many ways, they have modeled themselves around the culture in which they were trying to fit in and I think more and more, you can just...
so you can be yourself.
You know, it does very differently.
I've got them like (??) on ruffles.
we're kind of individuals and we have our personalities and that we're conforming to the 80's, you know, (??) shoulder pad suit or business.
And isn't it an acknowledgment maybe that...
I think sometimes even now and very often, right, when you read about how to get ahead, you still do sometimes see articles that say that women have to be more aggressive and that you have to make sure that your voice is being heard and that sometimes to me creates this sort of gray area in the conversation where I think, well we don't have testosterone, right?
So it might not be in our nature to be aggressive and do we have to act like men to get there?
Is it really about having those mentors and if you could put women in some key areas in each of your industries or business, what do you think they would be?
If you just make sure there was a women in a few spots throughout the industry?
Oh yeah, I think that what we're really playing is a numbers game.
Right now is a great time to be a woman tech but there is not enough women in tech.
But I worried a lot as the conversation gets really confused on what percentage of the pie is women.
And the truth is the pie isn't big enough.
We're not producing enough computer scientists.
We're not producing enough product designers.
We need a lot more people to keep up with all of these gadgets, all of the technology, all these possibilities, the jobs of the future.
We really need a lot more people interested in mobile technology, in computers.
We need a lot more people and if we grow that number, the number of women by its very nature go up, right?
These are just the sort of things that the Advanced Placement Exam, 200,000 students a year take the Calculus exam.
Only 14,000 take the Computer Science exam.
SO 7% of the kids who think they're good at Math take both the Math and the Computer Science exam.
But if you talk to Google Engineers, they've actually done studies.
Only 2% of Google engineers weren't exposed to Computer Science in high school which means if you graduate from high school and you haven't been exposed to Computer Science, the odds that you're going to end up being an engineer somewhere are incredibly low.
So you really just need to get that number up, right?
Imagine if we had 200,000 or 500,000 students graduating from high school every year that were taking Computer Science as well as calculus as opposed to just 7%.
So are we setting ourselves back even farther by falling behind in Science and Technology education across the board?
I think that is probably true in a macro level but back to your question about what do we need to do specifically to get women in to the tech industry whether as engineers or marketers or whatever, right?
And I would say we need to kinda have successful role models in every level and I don't mean just that the executive level or the high level in the organization, if you kinda look at, you know, Cisco for example.
Other things we find is a lot of women enter the workforce but we lose them after they work for 3 or 4 years or 5 years and I think it is that point where they are trying to decide.
Do they wanna have a career at all?
It doesn't matter whether in tech or not or do they want to give up the career to raise a family and I think that seems to be a point of decision for women and I think it is at that critical juncture that they need to see that you can do both and you know, and isn't just one or the other and that's why I don't like the word balance at all because to me, it just seems like you are always driving for perfection.
You know, you can never perfect everything.
I think it is really at that point, telling the stories about how did I raise my child as I was working too?
What challenges did I face?
How did I have to integrate all of these things?
That is important and I think that is important in addition to what Marissa saying, how do you just keep women in the technology workforce and making sure that they're contributing at whatever level?
That is very critical.
So I would say we should have role models, both men and women, that talk to people because every parent has a challenge, right?
And I think as parents, when you're thinking about do I want to become a parent or do I want to just strictly focus on the career, it's important for people to know you can have both.
You don't really need to compromise one or the other.
It seems like that argument is for role models for younger women, both male and female.
And I know that (Cheryl Sandberg?) has talked a lot about how choosing...
not get too soft here but choosing the right partner is one of the best choices you can make for your career and I think, you know, I have a son and a daughter and it's really important...
really important for me to model for my son that I can do both of these things and that he gets to see a partnership at work, at home and that model extends to our children and also maybe to our high schools and I really appreciate the comment about getting people involved in engineering at the high school level because I suspect that many high schools have Computer Science programs at all.
And certainly in them, I doubt there are many female computer science high school teachers.
Yes, that's probably true.
(Cheryl Sandberg?) kind of quote that you mentioned earlier, from her famous...
now famous tag top where she was saying and I think that the crucial thing that she said was don't leave before you leave and that women who are planning on having a family, she found sometimes they would...
they would not take that promotion.
They would, you know, not lift it or definitely not be as assertive and aggressive in pursuing their career path anticipating that they were going to be going on maternity leave and starting a family.
And that being a kind of a crucial point, a crucial juncture in any young women's life and instead of studying her career path and I read another article which was really...
which influenced me a great deal and this was years ago when I was younger and there was an interview with an elder States woman in technology.
And she said that she had always...
She said how is it possible that you raised 4 children by yourself, your husband had died when the children were very small and she was single mother.
And so, in addition to being a high level executive, she was also seemingly had to be raising 4 children.
So she said I had always taken the promotion.
I had always driven for more.
I had always taken, you know, the path that lead me to a greater level of achievement and success and status within the industry because what ended up happening is once I was at that level, I was significantly more free with my time.
I was an executive.
I could start work at 4 AM.
I could leave at 3. I had more flexibility in terms of making my own schedule because I was the person in charge and I could make these determinations and that actually influenced me a great deal.
I thought that was a very significant thin.
That instead of, you know, sort of setting your slide slower, you set your slides higher.
And that was a very influential article for me.
That's very powerful, I love that.
That's distracted me now.
I just wanna go find it and read it.
Work-life balance, can you...
Do you have stories that you can share with us?
You know, we've talked a lot about the stories and I think that that is obviously hugely influential and the audience would like to hear it.
How do you accomplish it?
Is it by setting your own schedules?
How do you ask for help?
For me and I've shared this story before, and so it's kinda of, you know, what I like about the integration, you probably met or seen this before.
I was told a story of when I had my son and he was really small.
I was running a factory, a semi-conductor factory and I have to travel a lot and I was managing a multiple-shift operation.
So I would be at work all hours and one other things that I realized is actually not the decisions I made that caused stressed but was actually the guilt associated with whatever decision I made that caused me stress.
You know, if my son was sick and I stayed home and I wasn't working.
I felt guilty I wasn't at work.
And if I was working, then I felt guilty, I wasn't at home and if I would bring my work home and stay with him and work from home, then I felt guilty 'cause I wasn't looking like the supermodel because I was in the gym working out.
And so I soon realized that it actually doesn't matter what decision you make 'cause you make whatever decision based on what is best for that day.
Maybe one customer meeting you missed because your kid is sick, it's okay.
It's not the end of the world.
There's somebody else that can take that meeting and the customer will still be there and they'll understand and same thing if you leave your son at daycare even though he is sick and you had to be at work, it's okay.
It's not the end of the world and he'll still love you because you're his mom.
And I think I learned not to be guilty about the decisions that I was making.
That was a big learning for me.
And the other thing I would say is actually making your kids part of your life, right?
Your work is part...
my work is part of my life and I actually said this to one of my bosses once and he said, well, how do you balance your work and your life?
I said, I only have one life, you know and that is my work and my family.
So I don't have 2 lives.
And I realized this because I would travel a lot and then when I was going on a business trip, I'd be packing and my son at that time was like 2-1/2 or something and he'd start crying because for him, the symbol of me bringing the suitcase was mom would be gone and it caused a lot of depression and then I would cry and then my husband would go running 'cause he didn't wanna see us both cry and keep me out of the house.
So it was a very dysfunctional preparation for a business trip.
And then I discovered this game, a back (??) called (Where in the World is Carmen San Diego?) and I started playing this with him and you know, it's gonna be Where in the World is Mom gonna be and you know we would go and search that country and learn about that country.
It's actually turning a painful experience into something that is fun and I think that was the other learning for me.
Don't try to shut your family out of your work, try to include them.
And I think that makes it easier.
And also talk about what goes on at work.
So my daughter was very jealous of me going to meetings.
So she knew that whenever I was going to my meeting, it was something that excluded her.
So she would...
she started doing this...
I am sorry, it's gonna be a little bit cute.
So she started doing this sort of meetings with her stuffed animals and things and I was like what did you guys talked about in your meetings and she says balloons and elephants.
And so I just said what we would do is we would start having our own meetings and I would kinda include her and this feeling of being involved in work.
And so we started having family meetings.
We have them every Friday morning at 8 AM.
And we sit around the breakfast table and we literally have a family meeting.
We talked about what was good, what was bad.
We talked about our work.
We very specifically talked about our work with each other and how our week went and, you know, what we wanna learn in the coming week.
And so now we have meetings.
And she kinda feels like she has meetings now and a really big thing about the meeting really is the...
having a notepad and a really sharp pencil and I don't know, that ended up working very well.
Yeah, it's sort of including them.
My philosophy and advice isn't gender-specific.
It;s find your rhythm.
When you look at really successful people, you often hear stories of people who just worked 80 to 100 hour a week, decades.
Like look at people like Winston Churchill or Einstein, like they...
like how do they do that?
But I really think that, you know, a lot (??) burnout, being related to not getting 8 hours of sleep per night or not having time with the family or not getting 3 meals a day and I don't think it has anything to do with those things.
Those were some people but really is, is what causes resent and what causes burnout is resentment.
It's that feeling of I worked 80 hours last week and I had to blow off my friends or you know, I worked a 100 hours last week and I missed the soccer game, right?
And then not feeling a resentment kinda builds on you and makes you feel like, well, I won't do that this week.
And so, I think that one of the exercises I've done with my team and for myself is what is it that you need in order to not be resentful and I've done this exercise a few times.
There is a young guy in my team where I was worried he was just working really hard and I said, you know, take a month, really think about while you're working, what is it that you need in order not to be resentful?
And he came back to me a month later and he said Tuesday night dinners.
He just graduated from school and the whole friendship group would kinda just potluck on Tuesday nights and I was like come at Tuesday night dinner.
He said well no, Tuesday night dinner, all was potluck and if I have to, you know, skip it when it is someone else's house and not see them or even worse if I have to cancel it when it is on my house 'cause something comes up on Tuesday night, I am just resentful the whole rest of the week.
I just feel like, you know, I did all this work and I couldn't even get to Tuesday night dinner.
I said okay, then let's just never miss another Tuesday night dinner.
Now, my (??) helped make sure it doesn't happen.
I had Katie, a soccer mom, who was really worried about her team on Google Finance was in Bangalore.
She kept doing video conference calls at 1 in the morning and I was like Katie, I got 3 kids, like 2 of them are twins, like you know, I am really worried, all these 1 AM conference calls.
She (??) don't worry about those damn conference calls.
They really don't bother me.
What does bother me is missing the soccer game or being 10 minutes late for the recital and then walking into the middle.
And I was okay, then my job is to make sure that you never miss something for your kids.
And it was actually really interesting to go through that process because there would be days when we'd be sitting at our meeting at like 3:35 and I know that Katie had to be out of there for that 4:00 game.
And it was to be like, Katie, you'd have to go and she would be like :Oh, just 5 more minutes.
We're almost there and like, you know, let's just finish this and power through." And I'd be happy to say "No, Katie's gotta go." Like we can get this back together again tomorrow and it didn't really matters.
And you know, I think it also changes for people throughout their life.
I don't have kids right now.
For me, it's travel.
Once every, you say, 4 months, 6 months, I like to go somewhere I've never been and I also have the benefit of being out of the office for an entire week missing every standing meeting once and then you know, my team understands.
I was like the world is (??) when I am not there.
I understand the world is (??) when I am not there and it's just really very...
it just provides a lot of sanity and I think that that would change over time but it's really about thinking about what is it that you need so you don't hit that resentful point.
For a lot of people, that is.
A good night sleep, you know, time with the family, a few good meals a day but you know, sometimes it's something that's just really personal and really basic and it's about really tapping in that side.
I think that is a great point and I talked about this a lot.
For me, it's an integration and I think (??) thing, right?
You know, Yourself.
And I think what you're saying about how do you do things that actually energize you that doesn't (??) yourself, your work, your family and your community and it can be your Church for some family, for some people, it's their dance or it's their friends or whatever it is.
I think if we only rotate and don't spend...
I don't think we can have a goal that says every week I am gonna spend equal number of hours on each side of those core, and then that's never gonna happen.
But if you (??) and you're not spending any time at all in one of those...
any one of those, then I think that resentment happens and that's really true.
I mean, if you're just doing family and work and you're not doing anything that interests you, then also that guilt and resentment starts to build out.
So I think that is just something to be aware of in the back of your head.
I think, Marissa, you raised a really important point which is that you're saying that you as a manger are aware of those issues in your workplace.
And, that seems to be something, you know, how do we sort of bubble up?
A lot of times, we are feeling those resentments but we don't ask our managers because maybe...
some of those I feel like is a conversation about being a human in the world.
You know, everybody, I think let's resentment bubble up and they don't ask.
What they say about it, it's a pill that you take and you hope the other person will die.
You know, you let it bubble up when you're afraid to ask your manager because you're afraid that you won't get that support.
How do we sort of institutionalize support for not balance but the things that your employees need in order to keep themselves in sync and keep doing a good job.
I think it is a conversation.
I think, you know, usually even somebody's resentful of something, you notice it in your team, right?
Because they're not fully there and I think that has an effect and you notice it.
And as a manager, you can choose to either (approve?) or you know, in a nice way or ignore it, right?
You know, I mean, my resentment, (??) okay 5 more minutes, let's take 5 more minutes to finish that and that would be the natural thing that a lot of us would do but she didn't do that and I think it's just kind of noticing that and keeping that in front is important because ultimately you're able to get more from that person.
And I think what that creates is return of loyalty, you know, I think in a relationship there's a loyalty now because as a manager you understood that and you know, Katie now feels like, you know, Marris is more to sensitive to that and I think that is really important.
Other things, little things that I do, you know, I travel a lot and my assistant schedules my trips all the time and she's always like invisible in the places I am going to and you know, I used to never...
I just feel for me and I would take it for granted because I was thinking my assistant is taking care of everything.
Now, wherever I go, I bring her back something.
That's a small gift.
And so she now feels like I appreciate the work that she does and that's another just thing.
And the reason I am using that example is just being aware of things as you said, the human things and letting that be shown as I think, that's how small but I think it makes a difference to people.
Do you mind if we take a few minutes for questions from our audience.
I see some eager faces out there and they look like they're just dying to ask you a few things.
I think we have a microphone in the back that we can pass around a little bit.
Well, just 3 or 4. Okay.
So they're gonna go grab us some microphone right now.
And while we're looking for that actually, one sort of question, you know true life experience again, you've all reached amazing plateaus...
not plateaus, amazing points in your career and you will only continue to go up, what was one of the biggest challenges you faced that was not related to being a woman and/or have you ever framed those challenges that way?
I mean I think that sometimes women talk about, women in tech, well I never thought about it.
I am just working.
Like what was the biggest sort of barrier you faced to getting where you are today?
I think the biggest barrier, I don't know if it's a barrier but I think...
if I think back to my career or a few decades in the tech industry, what I would have...
if I could redo it, I think sometimes be hesitate to take the next step, right?
You know, when you're doing well, you are comofrtable, you have a great team, great company you're working for and an opportunity comes up and you just don't want to move there, right, or go there.
And I think earlier in my career, I've let a lot of opportunities go by just because I was comfortable where I was and I think that, in a way, I don't think it was a barrier but I think it is something I would do differently.
I think it is okay to be uncomfortable in your life and in your...
I mean in life actually.
It forces us to be uncomfortable, right?
It's not our choice.
Sometimes we're pulled in uncomfortable situation whether you lose somebody in your life who is supporting to you or lose something or you've gained something and that causes, you know, you can be uncomfortable too.
But when it is in your work, it's almost deliberate, right?
You know, and those things are things I would do differently.
I don't think I knew what I wanted to do and so what many people, I think these days would consider very late.
I was almost 30 before I kind of hopped into technology and I guess, that's not entirely true.
I had been a bit of a nerdy child.
However, I didn't have a particular career path.
I look out there now and I see these kids out there that are 19 or 20 years old and they're...
they know what they wanna do.
They know that they wanted to do a (??), you know they wanna be in technology and I am amazed by that because I really did not start out in that frame of mind at all.
In fact, it's been a long time searching.
I was kinda backpacking around and traveling and doing all jobs here and there and waiting tables and doing all kinds of jobs and I...
You're the opposite type.
I know, I wanna tell the 19 year old to do that and so, to be so...
Which actually (??) No.
In the end I think really, you know, influenced me a lot and the work that I do and the things that I care about.
So, I really think it's important to have that time for yourself to figure out what it is that you wanna do.
I mean, I went down a lot of paths that were, you know, clearly the wrong path.
When I started working in web design and, you know, sort of the 90's, I was definitely (??) kinda gone through 3 or 4 careers.
I haven't really thought about how the categories challenges whether or not they're related to gender 'cause I would always like to say that, you know, I am not a woman at Google, I am a geek at Google.
That's what I mean.
I do think the biggest challenge, I've been at Google now for 12- 1/2 years and the biggest challenge throughout has been scale, scale of the service, scale of the company, the scale of different processes and you know, that's (??) point about that moment when you're uncomfortable.
Like just at the moment, really like this is a great process and it's working perfectly and I really like it, it breaks.
I mean under that kind of scale, watching Search literally grow 10,000 times over.
I was in the first 20 employees and Google now has grown like, you know, 25 to a 100 times.
You know, I really do think that it really is about thinking about when do you say hey, this is a great process or a great system for last year or this piece of architecture worked when we had millions of queries a day and isn't going to work when we have tons of millions of queries today or hundreds of queries today and so, that notion of it, trying to figure out when should you take a step back and rework the foundation, be it an internal process or actually technology itself is something I just always found really challenging.
Well, I haven't...
I can't say that I've reached the same career point perhaps that these...
one of the women have but I would say that I wish that when I was much younger, I had felt more self confident about networking with people who are gonna matter to me later.
When I was in college, I think I was so happy to be there but I didn't...
I didn't really take the step that I needed to take to reach out to professors and make a relationship and to really learn from them.
I kind of stood back and let them talk and took notes and then turned in my paper and I wish I had just had the self confidence at that time to say here's who I am and here's what I think and can I benefit from a personal conversation with you?
That's what I would do differently.
That's still a hard thing to do as an adult.
We have our microphone out.
So we'll do a couple of questions and then we will free you because I know my butt is starting to go to sleep.
I don't know about you guys.
Well firstly, thank you so much for this panel.
It's very refreshing to have this at CES.
So my question is around social media.
Specifically we see in the tech world that women are driving so much to social media, sharing, posting, fan pages, is there a way to target women specifically on social media?
And if so, I'd love to hear your opinions on that.
That's sounds for Catarina.
Everyone is looking at me.
That's what we're doing.
I don't know why we're doing that.
I am not sure I have the magic recipe for that.
There are, you know, it's essentially...
before we start talking, Molly asked if...
it was actually Lindsay who asked if the majority of users on Flicker were women and the asset, it was the case and women are frequently the family archivist, so the people who take the photos, you know, connect everybody and they tend to be very involved in the photo taking.
I don't actually know whether or not women still dominate in, you know, on Flicker or not but there are actually...
I mean there are certain places that women tend to congregate online, there are certain products that they tend to go to, there are some environments that they are attracted to, you know, women have never really penetrated all male environments.
There are some, you know, kind of classic examples like (Slash Out?) was not chick-friendly.
Like there's kind of a common principle and so for a media designer, you know, if women are there, men will come but it's not the same in the other direction interestingly.
It's a sort of a pattern that you see repeatedly happening on social media networking sites.
It's hard to say.
It's hard to say what the magic thing is because a lot of this is really, I would say aren't Science.
It's not something that it can be formulated.
In some ways, it's kind of a knock, it's sort of a feeling, you get a sense for product that has a general and broad appeal.
It is something that women are drawn to and participate in.
I can't really...
it's interesting because this is the work that I do but I would not say that there is any sort of set way of doing that.
Although I think from the perspective of designing the product, for me I think what's appealing to me about online social spaces is the idea of a safe space.
That's what I like about Google Circles and that's what I like about our Google Plus Circle and Facebook.
I like the idea of creating sort of a place that I know it's okay to place...
You know, I would never advocate walling off the internet but I think there's something to be said for social experiences that are shared in a private way and I feel like that's one of the things that I have embraced about using social networks and using a site like (Guild?) where it's a sign out for...
you know, and it may not be about the comments there but it's sort of...
it feels smaller, it's local.
I think a lot of that is actually...
how does (??) itself is develop and maintained and how the administrators and moderators of those sites take care of them.
Lindsay mentioned in the beginning of this conversation that you will actually go on to many many tech sites and you will find women being written about in the press and then the comments would be just like, (??) comments, just these horrible things that were written in there and what that means to me is that the site, that site itself has not given very much consideration to developing a civilized conversation space.
Whoever is maintaining that product where all of these sort of hostile and, you know, sexist comments are taking place is not doing a very good job in terms if cultivating a community of, you know, reasonable voices and people who are making positive contributions and not just, you know, not just trolling in and hating.
That's a tough one though.
I have to admit with Mercy here 'cause you two (??) to me.
That is a tough one though because there is a difference...
there's a fine line between creating safe spaces and centering speech online and I think it's, you know...
I think it depends...
We would definitely feel more comfortable if people weren't saying that stuff about us on the internet.
But I think it's your option.
I think it depends on what you're sharing and in certain things, you're willing to share publicly and some of the things you're not.
And then (??) as long as you have an option to do that.
I think that makes sense and I think what you're saying though is I like that.
I think the person creating that needs to take the responsibility, almost somewhat editorially looking at the comments that are being posted and what is being posted.
And I also looked at things like Pinterest or even Google Plus Circles.
And I think what is interesting about it is it's changing the conversation.
It's changing why and how people connect to each other.
This is actually based on interest.
It's not based on demographics and I think when you move the conversation from demographics to that sort of interest space because even when you look at how people use Google Plus Circles, it will be like, you know, you're ski buddies, you're art buddies or fashion buddies like whatever...
however you're categorizing them, a lot of times those circles are actually based on interest and I think that kind of shipped to the conversation actually makes women more comfortable.
I have a casting circle on Google Plus, little known fact I swear like (a trickier?).
Any other questions out there?
But only in my (??) circle, we have one (??).
I was wondering, at CES specifically, I know you went a little bit about the boot babes and the lack of women attending, but one of the things that I've noticed is in North Hall every year, there's not parenting tech but mommy tech.
So I was wondering if you had any comments to maybe part of the problem with making a choice between family and career is that once you have a family, you're expected to be a mommy.
Not just a mother.
Not every person who has children that they are (??) but a mommy.
I think that is incredibly unfair to men to be honest.
It is really.
This drives my husband bananas.
I mean he will say wait a minute, I take care of my children, how come nobody wants to talk with me about this?
That's what I...
Why is it not Mommy and Daddy Tech, right?
Why isn't it a parenting thing?
I think at this point, I think that is a great point.
It is sort of the...
it does seem to be sort of...
it's just sort of easy to say that once we're a mom, that's all we become, you know?
I think of (??) colleagues who decided that being a mom was gonna be it and that...
So it's partly about identity and you're right, it's partly about spreading the wealth in terms of parenting responsibility.
Yeah, we'll do yours and then one more.
So I proudly work for Padma.
Oh, you have a player.
And right next to me, I have a fresh graduate new hire from (Brooklyn?), some background and experience design.
Earlier you were talking about experience plus technology and how critical that is going forward.
So my question is what kind of advice would you have to new people into the workforce for pushing experience 'cause you know, experience often gets run over by technology and product management and product lines and things, you know, how would you advise someone fresh in the workforce to go ahead and you know, evangelize technology or experience amongst all of that?
Yeah actually I think Marissa is probably better to qualify to answer that than I am but I think one of the things that I was talking about earlier...
and welcome by the way in to the workforce...
But it's important not just to think of products as technology.
You know, products are something that we use to make our lives simple.
And if you kinda look at it from that point of view, whatever the product is, the value isn't making our lives simple.
Then I think you focus on how do I use it to make my life simple and that is all about the experience and the technology really becomes the foundation, almost behind the scenes of making that happen.
And you know, what we captured there is really the experience...
how we experienced that product.
So you have a great, a very important role to play.
Yeah, I mean, I think experience is what makes technology compelling and interestingly, it doesn't only do that on the user side but I've actually done studies across the country of Introductory Computer Science Programs and there are better enrollment across the board if the curriculum focuses more on problem solving as supposed to just saying hey, write a routine that does (??) numbers or just get the mechanics down, the ones that say use this technology to solve a problem in Chemistry or use this technology to solve a problem in organization.
Like when you actually think about how the problem solves, (??) not only is experience what makes technology compelling when you buy anew gadget but also what makes these people compelled to learn about the technology is the experience of being able to solve a problem.
And I think as Catarina was saying, she started off as a designer and you know, she made it a point to say I am not a engineer like these two.
So I think this is a living proof here on what we can accomplish, right?
And there are more and more companies that have started by designing theirs or have design as a very strong focus and I really do believe that a well-designed product can overcome, you know, lots of technology flaws.
If the product itself is something that people want, people love and people will use, the technology to support it will come up to meet it.
Does somebody have the mic out there?
Thank you so much to our amazing panel.
You women are brilliant and beautiful and we are happy to have you.
And thank you all for coming out.
I hope you enjoyed it.
This will be posted online later at CNET so definitely check that out.
A full slate of programming for you will be starting again tomorrow.
We will have the Best of CES Awards Presentation right here on the stage.
You don't wanna miss that.
That is the 10 absolute best products that we've seen at CES, plus of course, the People Voice Award and the Best of CES Overall Title and then after that, a few more podcast and we'll be taping a CES special.
So you can come and spy on that.
We'll see you guys later.