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Coaching Women Engineers: Professionally, and for Life

Coaching / Training / Mentorship
Team Processes
Career Path

20 January, 2022

Yang Wang
Yang Wang

Head of Product Engineering at Bond

Yang Wang, Engineering Manager at Bond, shares how she coached several women engineers in her team to boost confidence and help them grow in their careers.

Confidence Issues Hold Back Women Engineers

In my previous company, I was very focused on mentoring women engineers because I wanted to help them get into the next step. Working with women engineers in general, I found out a common phenomenon: lack of confidence. They are more concentrated on what they want, but the issue is not knowing how to bring this up to people they are working with, including their manager. In some cases, some women cannot articulate well enough what they might be looking for.

Coaching Women Engineers in Their Career

When I was coaching and working with a female engineer, the first thing that I did was help them clarify, or understand what exactly they were looking for. In essence, help them be able to phrase that clearly in front of their managers. Being affirmative, and asking for further explanation when needed is something that most women engineers need to assure.

A bigger part of me was actually guiding them to recognize their goals and work towards them. Working with my tech leads, and other individuals in my team, I made sure that they are aware of themselves and their surroundings; like what resources they had and how they could utilize them to get the best results.

Mentors who actually offer help to others might sometimes be very inspiring. They might talk about things that are easier said than done.

Normally, I like to dig deeper into conversations with different people. Sometimes a lot of people say something that they might not be looking for. However, I have been thinking about having a group discussion, more like a cohort, with different people.

Lessons learned

  • Building confidence can be a game-changer. It’s crucial to get out of one’s comfort zone and be able to present their idea. Be aware of your skills and you might as well come up with an idea of a lifetime.
  • If you’re a mentor, try to be as inspiring as possible to others. Remember that others will follow in your footsteps, and you need to prove the best of your abilities as an example.

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