We're quite used to hearing about our favorite fashion bloggers, but today's #Itlist shines the spotlight on the awesome girls that are heading up a different part of the digital industry.
These are our kind of It girls for sure— smart, innovative, and they've risen the ranks of the tech world by putting their revolutionary ideas to the test. They're on the teams that have developed sites like Kickstarter to fund our creative projects and Rent The Runway
which puts designer dresses within our reach. Thanks to them, you can be the mayor of your local coffee shop (or anywhere else in the world) on Foursquare
. And if you follow us @NYLONMAG
you already know about our serious hobby: posting photos of every thing we see on Instagram
They serve as a good reminder that the tech world isn't just a boy's club. If you're thinking of joining the wave, these wise words from the leaders of the tech industry (and the smart girls club) will inspire you to get moving on your own bright ideas.CASSIE MARKETOS, EDITORIAL AT KICKSTARTERHow I Got Started:
I moved to New York on a whim, determined to figure out…something. (Who am I? What am I doing? You know the story.) I was open to everything and met anybody that I could. By chance, I crossed paths with one of the co-founders of Kickstarter within a few months of the move—it was a connection that turned into job a couple years later, when it came time for Kickstarter to get underway.Why I Love My Job:
Easy! For literally everything. I wouldn't have taken the job if I didn't sincerely believe in the people I work for, and I still feel that way today. Plus, Kickstarter itself is an amazing doorway into the creative lives of thousands of people. There's so much stuff to get excited about: citizen science, outer space, robots, maker projects, civic pursuits, wild-eyed abstract art projects, etc. It's crazy! There are such good things happening out there—it's nice to be reminded of that on a daily basis. My Advice:
If you're still figuring things out, say yes to everything. You never know where a chance opportunity will lead you. In general? Stick up for yourself. Don't ever be afraid to speak up.You may doubt yourself to your core when you're first getting started somewhere, but suck it up. The worst you can be is wrong, and you'll find out pretty quickly how not big of a deal that is. If you lack confidence, ask questions and educate yourself. Seek out people you admire and talk to them. There's a lot of wisdom to be gleaned from the experience of others, and amazing people are everywhere. Find them, but be prepared for them. Make those conversations count! MARI SHEIBLEY, DESIGN LEAD AT FOURSQUAREHow I Got Started:
I had worked in client services designing websites for several years which was my first foray into digital. In 2009 a couple friends were putting together a mobile app and although I had no experience in mobile design (who did back then?) I jumped at the chance to help out and learn. That app was Foursquare. Why I Love My Job:
I love that I work with really smart people who are passionate about what we're building. I love that we're trying to solve really interesting problems. I love being able to constantly iterate; if something isn't working we can fix it. My Advice:
I think side projects and taking on challenges outside of your normal day to day is huge. It's a great chance to think about different problems and learn new skills. JESSICA ZOLLMAN, COMMUNITY EVANGELIST AT INSTAGRAMHow I Got Started:
When I first moved to San Francisco in 2008 I was pursuing a career in Music Business. Having grown up in the Bay Area I always knew that SF was a hub for technology, and that the music industry was struggling, so marrying those two passions would be vital for my career. To be honest, I had absolutely no idea what "technology" or "social media" meant in relation to any sort of career at that time. I just knew I loved spending time on Facebook, once I signed up for Twitter I was addicted, and I saw the potential for leveraging social services for brands right away. I ended up meeting several incredibly motivating people in the SF tech scene, landed an internship at SPIN Magazine assisting with their online presence, and soon realized I had discovered my passion.
I was forced to climb the "startup ladder," since proving the value of a Community Manager or Community Evangelist to startups trying to spend their money wisely was no easy task. I worked in support for companies like Linden Lab and Formspring all while investing in promoting my personal brand through social media. It eventually paid off and lead Kevin Systrom, CEO of Instagram, and Josh Riedel, Instagram's Community Manager, to notice my drive and passion for interacting with and promoting online communities and asked me to join their team as the fifth member.Why I Love My Job:
I haven't run into any negativity in the tech industry as a result of my gender. I partially attribute that to the fact that I treat people I interact with exactly how I expect to be treated in return -- as equals and with respect. In addition to that, I have always been driven and simply continued to believe I would succeed in the tech industry even when I was responding to live chat support requests in a dark windowless office. My Advice:
If women starting careers in tech just believe in themselves and their abilities, they will certainly succeed.JENNIFER HYMAN, CEO & CO-Founder OF RENT THE RUNWAYHow I Got Started:
I started Rent the Runway so that women everywhere could have access to the amazing designers and styles that they see on the red carpet and covet but can’t afford. With the prevalence of social media I saw an increased social pressure of constantly updating your outfit and began noticing how confident and fantastic wearing a designer outfit made women feel. Why I Love My Job:
Rent the Runway tells people they are good enough to wear real designer dresses and enables them to enjoy Cinderella moments in their lives to the fullest extent.
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