The San Antonio Business Journal printed a very interesting article in this weekend’s issue. The article starts by informing the reader that
About 22 percent of the nearly 30,000 San Antonio-area businesses with paid employees in 2012 — the most recent year for which such Census data is available — were owned by women…
With these numbers, San Antonio is the fifth-highest among the top 106 markets analyzed by American City Business Journals. This really excites me and I want to elaborate more on why that is the case.
I was raised by a single-mom who did a great job being there for me and go to work every day. Nonetheless, it was not easy for her and I know that she had to compromise often to make things work. I was also blessed with loving grandparents who helped whenever they could.
Before working as a programmer I was active in law enforcement, which gave me insights into the troubles of humanity. A friend recently asked me what I learned from that experience, and what I thought was the best measure to prevent crime. I didn’t have to think about the answer at all – good parenting is the single-most important factor in crime prevention. If children are raised with good values by loving parents, then the likelihood of those kids growing into healthy, contributing adults is highest. Europe and the United States have a very high rate of single-mothers. While I won’t deny that there are single-fathers too, who deserve the same levels of support, we cannot ignore that most single parents are females. We live in times though were location no longer needs to be a limitation when it comes to being employed, or running a business. There are numerous examples of very successful mom-preneurs. Technology is a field that lends itself very well to remote work since it often is location independent and based on an exchange of intangible services. By supporting women to work in, and with technology we open a whole new paradigm of possibilities to the many single-mothers who desperately need to make a decent income to provide for themselves and their children.
I do have one more self-serving argument. In my personal experience women are amazing communicators and listeners. It’s easier for them to make concessions. They are team players who usually have a common goal in mind, and understand the need for flexibility and prioritization. I am a firm believer that those are invaluable traits when in comes to problem solving. A programmer should be a problem solver more than anything else. Wanting to create the most complex and complicated solution is ego-centric while willing to find creative solutions to solve common business problems is what we really should aim for as professionals.