Marketing & Advertising

The Female Quotient Is Working to Transform Corporate Culture

This article is a based in part on a story that originally appeared in It Is Innovation (i3) magazine, published by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)®.

Overview Shelley Zalis, CEO and founder of The Female Quotient, works with Fortune 500 companies to advance gender equality, and is hosting the FQ lounge, tours and more during CES 2020.

Shelley Zalis launched The Female Quotient and Girls’ Lounge (which has evolved into the FQ Lounge) to support and mentor women to find their voice, embrace their feminine leadership powers and work to transform corporate culture.

The FQ’s signature pop-up experience, the FQ Lounge, brings a ‘Home of Equality’ to major conferences, companies and college campuses worldwide and attracts leaders at events including the World Economic Forum, Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and CES.

Through this movement, Zalis has connected more than 18,000 women in business and created the largest female-led community to change workplace culture.

“You have to break the rules to write new ones.” She explains, “This really is our moment; when purpose meets passion, you are unstoppable.”

Zalis spoke about what The Female Quotient will be doing at CES and more.

Can you tell us about your plans at CES 2020?

We’re thrilled to be working with CES. Within the FQ Lounge, we’ll be featuring key female leaders and up-and-coming female leaders in tech. We will feature equality partners and do our annual floor tour with more than 200 women in official partnership with CES.

We’ll also be working with the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)® throughout the year to help advance equality for women in tech. One of the most important things for us is focusing on the future and creating this pathway for evolution and change. And that is how we truly make a difference in the world.

Can you talk about the new partnership with CTA and CES?

Partnership is a really important word for us.

Several years ago, I sat on an airplane next to Tony Robbins. We talked about life lessons during the whole flight. He said that most partnerships are old school models. A true partnership is where we work together on activating a new product — something that is out of your comfort zone but becomes your new comfort zone because you are doing it together. And that is what this partnership means to us.

It really is bringing the best champions, the best technology, the best thinking, the best needs and the openness that we don’t know where we are going to go right now but we are moving forward together. And when you go together, you go faster and further and smarter.

How do we help women bring their best selves to the table? We come with that knowledge and that community. And what CES and CTA bring is the openness to be better, to evolve. And when you make mistakes, you own up and move forward with positivity and proactivity.

Companies that have an equal representation of women are more innovative and resilient.

Shelley Zalis
CEO and Founder, The Female Quotient

How can tech companies bring more women into the workforce?

By 2024, more than two-thirds of com­puting-related jobs in the U.S. could go unfilled due to the insufficient pool of college graduates with computing-related degrees. Women could help meet this demand.

Adding more women to the digital workforce will do more than just fill a growing need for talent. Companies that have an equal representation of women are more innovative and resilient.

Research from the Boston Consulting Group suggests ways to recruit, retain and advance women in digital that include:

  • Identify every possible candidate.
  • Rethink candidate events.
  • Consider candidates from non-STEM and STEM-related fields.
  • Make fair job offers.
  • Use technology to eliminate biases.

Who inspires you?

I am inspired by champions of change. I am also inspired by my team. Most of my team is under the age of 40, many under 30. We inspire each other. We are a group of the collective and all of us together bring this magic to the table.

Learn more about how Zalis is bold, brave and fearless in i3 magazine.

Keep Up with Innovation

It Is Innovation (i3) magazine, the flagship magazine from the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)®, focuses on innovation in technology, policy and business as well as the entrepreneurs, industry leaders and startups that grow the consumer technology industry.

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