What It’s Like Working in Tech Startups as a Young Woman


It was her tweeting that got Joanna Woo a job in tech.

The University of Waterloo graduate has always loved technology. In high school, she built her own websites. In university, although she completed an honours psychology program, she took a few STEM courses just because. And after she entered the job market, she still kept a toe in the field, volunteering at and helping to organize tech conferences.

It was at the Human Resources Professional Association annual conference in 2010 where Woo’s social-media presence got her noticed. Twitter, which launched four years prior, was becoming more popular. Nick Bontis, an academic and management consultant who was the keynote speaker at the event said that everyone should be like Woo, who was tweeting at him during the conference. “That’s when BlackBerry stepped in and recruited me,” she says. “I’ve been in…

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