13 March, 2020
Expanding our Network!!
One of the best ways to expand a professional network is to engage with other business organizations or industry-specific associations whose focus aligns with your own or that have overlapping mandates. This is especially true within a smaller population base, where holding joint events with other associations is a way to encourage a larger and more diverse audience which might otherwise be limited, as well as provide the additional benefit of promoting networking between association members.
Our last two meetings have been joint events, supported by our Edmonton Chapter of Women in Big Data in conjunction with ISACA (formerly, Information Systems Audit and Control Association) Edmonton Chapter’s SheLeadsTech initiative. I am President of the Edmonton Chapter of ISACA and the Edmonton Chapter Lead for SheLeadsTech. These joint events have been attended by individuals from both associations, where the topics were of interest to everybody, and which allowed for significant networking.
The SheLeadsTech initiative seeks to increase the representation of women in technology leadership roles and the tech workforce, whilst educating employees and professionals to overcome unconscious bias. ISACA has over 160,000 members worldwide and more than 220 Chapters; one of the advantages of WiBD is the supporting sponsors and partners. As such, SheLeadsTech and Women in Big Data have significant synergies and similar goals.
To further establish our Chapter’s reach and to build a comprehensive and extensive network in Edmonton, in the fall, when students are exploring options for the start of the academic year, we are planning an event to invite numerous other associations to attend: a sort of trade fair. These associations will include Meetup and other groups including: Women in Technology, Ladies Learning Code, Edmonton Women in Machine Learning and Data Science, YEGWIT (YEG Women in Technology), etc.
This will, hopefully, promote further engagement and awareness of our Edmonton WiBD Chapter, allow us to become even more firmly established in the community, and build on our reputation of diversity and inclusivity.