Sonya Sigler – CEO at PractiGal

“Over the last three years since I started PractiGal LLC, my own coaching and consulting company, to help women reach the next level in their career or business, I have been mentoring and coaching others. It’s important to me that we share what we have learned so other women coming after us do not make the same mistakes and can rise higher in their careers.”

“In male dominated industries, it helps to share advice and talk about what to do in certain situations. In my first job as a lawyer at SEGA, I noticed very few women in the videogame industry and even fewer women in leadership positions.”

“To change this, I co-founded the Women’s Interactive Entertainment Association, which was a group to help women not only enter the videogame industry but succeed in their chosen career. It was funded and supported by men and women.”

“To promote gender equality and salary parity, one of the most effective things men can do is to stop making assumptions about a woman’s situation, career wants and desires and to simply ask, “What is your career goal?” Listen carefully to her answer and then help her where possible to achieve those goals. It isn’t all about salary negotiations or asking for a raise, it is about opportunity – knowing about it and taking advantage of it, preferably with men’s support.”

“Women can help themselves regardless of what industry they are in, but especially in male dominated industries by seeking out mentors. My best (and for a while, only) mentors in the videogame industry were male.”

“Mentoring can be done formally through alumni groups or trade associations, or informally on your own. Informal mentoring can be very effective, and it can simply be started by asking someone (male or female) how they became successful or what career path they followed. This conversation starter that can lead to a great mentoring relationship.”

“You may seek out mentors for different purposes. Aspiring entrepreneurs can just ask about what they are interested in. “How did you do it?” is a powerful question. Don’t be afraid to ask that and any other questions you may have!”

“I have succeeded in my career because I am not afraid to pick up the phone and ask for help. Almost everyone I talk to is willing to help. All you need to do is ask.”