Sunday, September 13, 2009

Where are all the successful female Visual Mappers


I am motivated to post this very short commentary based on what I have just watched on BBC Canada. The program was a documentary regarding Norway’s laws, designating gender equality within all aspects of society. The focus was aimed at women sitting as board members and directors.

Taking this facet of Norwegian society into consideration as a professional Visual mapper; I have had one of those epiphany moments where I have abruptly realized there are very few female professional visual mappers. The potential reality though is that, I may indeed be looking for professional female visual mappers; they’re there but I just don’t see them because of my male dominant conditioning.

From what I gather from the documentary, It has been measured that gender balanced teams perform more effectively than gender dominant teams. The findings were indeed very revealing, and I wanted to open up a discussion regarding the absolute need for finding, dialoguing with and creating business relationships with professional Visual mapping women.

Taking into consideration that a few of my colleagues and I are now in the process of founding a Visual Mapping Body of Knowledge (VMBOK), and also acknowledging the Visual mapping arena may indeed be male dominated.

This is an invitation to our female colleagues who are professional Visual mappers to connect with us, with a view to involvement within the VMBOK.

What are your thoughts on this issue?

1 comment:

MsTechArt said...

Hi Wallace,

I heard from a visual mapping software vendor a few years ago that there appeared to be few females using visual mapping software. I was surprised to hear that and am not sure that I understand why that may be true. I am female and learned mind mapping many years ago. Then about 4 or 5 years ago I ran across some software and have relied on visual mapping since for just about all my professional efforts. However, I have always been a bit of a 'tom-boy' -- love fly-fishing, did some hunting, just basically enjoy hanging out with the guys rather than doing the 'girly' things. My tech services manager (male) tried visual mapping and it just doesn't work for him. Sometimes when we are brainstorming I'm saying "I need to draw a picture" -- he's fine just talking. So in that scenario it is not a gender issue. Maybe this is more a right-brain left-brain tendency?? I know in my small professional world (public sector) I have seen no other visual mappers -- except recently our DBA (female) has jumped on board with some visual software she saw me using. It just might be that we need to work harder to get the females' attention and demonstrate the value of visual mapping.

take care!