As per global survey, “Journey into Web3” by KuCoin, 49 per cent of professional women have worked part-time or as freelancers in Web3-related industries, and 33 per cent full-time. However, only 27 per cent of women are engaging in their own Web3-related projects or businesses.
The industry facts state that women have the quality of recognising more benefits of Web3 jobs, especially when it comes to the flexibility and culture of the Web3 workplace, but while coping with this fast-changing industry, the biggest challenge is the male-dominated culture.
Due to this challenge, 60 per cent of professional women recognise their unique value in facilitating better culture in the Web3 workplace and communities.
Manasa Rajan, CEO, Jupiter Meta, a Metaverse and Web3 advisory, feels it is important to empower these women professionals who are emerging as contributors through diverse perspectives and skill sets in the Web3 space.
As a woman entrepreneur, who has built her own metaverse space, Rajan tells People Matters how women can seize opportunities and broaden their presence and horizons in this industry.
Changing forms of discrimination
Back in the day, it was all about overt discrimination. But today that discrimination has evolved into a sort of unconscious bias, feels Rajan.
“Today, very rarely are women told, “You can’t get this done,” or, “You can’t accomplish this yourself,” instead it becomes about the “small things”, things like: for every 100 men promoted to upper management, only 86 women are.
"20 years ago, those women would have simply been told that they didn't receive their promotion, but now there’s a subtle stumbling block sitting in the shadows. The challenge then becomes about whether they’re one of those women who didn’t make it, even if they are (more often than not) extremely qualified for the job,” she contends.
Rajan adds that the system today, though very different from the way it was, is still a slightly uneven field of operation.
“And that slight unevenness makes a huge difference in the lives of the women that actually face it.”
The leadership factor
Another issue that Rajan highlights is the leadership aspect.
“No one should ever have to conform to what leadership looks like right now. Human beings should be allowed to lead in their own unique way, but the current ecosystem does not allow for that. We have a model for how leadership is supposed to look like, and it is strongly biased towards extroversion. And that’s something I felt like I needed to conform to and learn,” she says.
Need for a change in mindset
When it comes to the role of women specifically in this new and vibrant space, the tech and its implementation can be a barrier to some, but that challenge can be easily overcome with a change in mindset, says Rajan.
“Creating a much equitable ecosystem, driven by the skills one brings to the table, and the opportunities they can solve for! Because at the end of the day, all we need to remember is that technology can solve real problems, as long as we can form a solid perspective on what those problems are.
"Of course, the tech industry is already bridging the gender equality gap in a big way, but Web3.0 is definitely driving that change at a faster clip. And as more startups consciously build a workforce that drives home the change, the impact of Web3.0 on the global tech scene will be so much more evident,” she adds.
Metaverse more about adaptation than adoption
The Metaverse is a technology in its nascent stage of adoption. And this can be largely attributed to a perception issue across industry and society.
Though solutions like augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR) and virtual reality (VR) drive disruption to a certain degree, the possibilities of what a convergence of metaverse and Web3.0 tech can lead to, is truly beyond imagination, says Rajan.
“I am of the opinion that the metaverse is already having a positive impact on different industries and functions, more so at a social level of environmental safety, sustainability and mental wellness.
"But with structured development and real consumer-centric solutioning, this tech can impact everything from customer engagement, digital product launches and HR interventions, to L&D, training, social events and more. And the key aspect of success around its implementation, is the ability to design solutions that deliver measurable results, without getting too carried away by the technology itself,” she says.
This means significant dwell time on creative storytelling, gamification and design infrastructure for building functionalities, combined with a detailed understanding of the target audience and their engagement behaviour.
Rajan says Metaverse, XR and Blockchain technologies that make up the core of what Web3.0 has to offer, are here to stay. And these technologies will drive a change in the way businesses interact with each other, and more importantly, how they interact with their consumers.
“While many talk about the unpredictability of this space, the disruption it has created in many industries is evidence enough that it is more about adaptation than it is about adoption. With Web3.0, business models will have to undergo a strategic shift from the Internet of Information to an Internet of Value,” she adds.