How can women succeed in IT startups?

Startups provide entrepreneurs with the ability to turn their passions into a business. Here are some tips for women to get ahead.


Success in IT startups is all about innovation. The barriers that can restrain larger companies are often nonexistent, meaning individuals can exploit ideas and capitalise on current trends.

Startups are also a potential remedy for the gender imbalance in the IT industry, handing control over to women who want to make their own mark with their own company.

A July 2 Women’s Agenda article focused on five Australian women who have achieved notable success with startups they founded and the mindset that got them there. Essentially, the key to success is to use the benefits that startups offer, most notably freedom.

Another key to success is knowing the market you’ll be joining. What has succeeded in the past? What hasn’t?

Who did Women’s Agenda highlight?

The article highlighted Biggest Loser judge Michelle Bridges as a great example of analysing a market and spotting the potential for innovation. According to Women’s Agenda, Ms Bridges noticed that some people don’t always have access to a personal trainer, inhibiting their ability to get fit.

Her response? Become an online trainer, so anybody with an internet connection could be have consistent access to this service.

Passion is also likely one of the motivations for any startup owner. Women’s Agenda provide the example of Stephanie Alexander, who was able to turn her passion for cooking into a successful app. Ms Alexander’s goal was to bring her favourite recipes to a new audience, which she did by embracing technology’s potential.

How can mentors help?

If you’re looking for inspiration and advice from people who have found success in the industry you’re pursuing, it can be worth contacting a mentor. After all, some things can only be learnt through experience.

The Australian government has acknowledged the need for strong guidance, announcing the Women in Global Business (WIGB) Winter 2015 Mentoring Program.

Now open for registrations, the program ensures female professionals have the knowledge, skills and connections to develop a startup business in overseas markets.