By Victoria Ayodeji
N their 2022 Women In the Workplace study, research conducted by McKinsey & Company and Lean In shockingly found that 32% of women in technical and engineering roles are often the only woman in the room at work.
Frontier technologies like AI, AR and VR are reshaping society and redefining the way we interact with each other, making representation of women in the technology space more important than ever. Our Founder and CEO Sharmadean Reid sat down Valentina Culatti from Snap Inc. for a fireside chat proudly sponsored by Snapchat on the Power To Build Tech For Good at The Stack World Women & Power Summit.
As the Director of Creative Strategy and Production EMEA at Snap Inc. Valentina has great expertise and focus on leveraging Snapchat’s innovative, industry leading Augmented Reality (AR) technology to drive impactful business results for clients. Helping brands to use Snap’s creative formats in order to reach its highly engaged global community of 750 million+ monthly active users.
Valentina has a particular focus on leveraging Snapchat’s innovative, industry leading Augmented Reality (AR) technology to drive impactful business results for clients. The insights Valentina shared left the audience with valuable takeaways and fresh perspectives on why women’s voices and their creativity are needed now more than ever in the tech world.
Here's a recap of some key points from Sharmadean and Valentina's fireside chat:
Valentina began by giving us a glimpse into her role as a creative strategist at Snapchat. She explained the dynamic nature of creativity and strategy in her day-to-day responsibilities, shedding light on the impact she has within a dynamic and innovative tech company like Snap. She then shared her fascinating journey into the technology world, from her earliest inspirations growing up in Italy to her pivotal career choices. Prior to Snapchat, Culatti spent almost five years at Meta where she held the position of Director of Creative Shop Northern Europe. Before Meta, she spent almost nine years at innovation production studio UNIT9 where she held the role of Managing Director and Director of the Board, leading a team of over 200 creatives, producers and digital technologists around the world, working across VR, Digital, Gaming, Experiential and Film, overseeing projects that garnered Cannes Lions, Emmy and BAFTA awards. Valnetina’s incredible journey inspired the audience by highlighting what motivated her to pursue a career in technology, showing that it's never too late to embark on this exciting path.
As an advocate for diversity and inclusion at Snapchat and in the wider industry, Valentina elaborated on why it’s a necessity for organisations to adopt the principles and values of diversity and inclusion. As a woman in the technology industry, Valentina discussed the unique perspective she brings to her role and the valuable lessons she has learned along the way. Her experiences have underscored the importance of diversity and inclusion in the sector. Striving for a more equitable society and designing technology products and services with women in mind and not as an afterthought fundamentally acts as a catalyst to innovation. Making technology products and services more accessible and appealing to a broader audiences is at the heart of progress in the in the industry.
Irrespecitve of your background, entering a new industry especially one as competitive as tech can be incredibly daunting. But Valentina provided invaluable advice for those aspiring to enter the tech industry from non-traditional backgrounds. She echoed the value of passion, determination, building support networks, and continuous learning in making a successful tech career transition. As well as why you should use your non-traditonal background as a unique selling point in allowing you to bring different perspectives and ideas to the table.
The session was closed with Valentina sharing strategies and initiatives aimed at inspiring and supporting the next generation of creative women in tech leadership. Her insights were both motivational and provided actionable steps for both organisations and for women looking to leave their mark on the tech world.
If you want to learn from tech industry leader Valentina, on how to make the technology world a more inclusive and innovative place, particularly in shaping the future of frontier technologies watch the replay on Stack TV.
Photos courtesy of Kiran Gidda.
Frontier technologies like AI, AR and VR are reshaping society and redefining the way we interact with each other, making representation of women in tech more important than ever.
By Victoria Ayodeji
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