Chapter 1 Introduction

The digital age offers women a unique opportunity to achieve their dreams and share their knowledge. As a software engineer and agile management trainer, I have seen firsthand how the digital world has evolved. But still, too few women dare to venture into the world of software. That’s why I want to encourage you to discover the creative side of shaping our digital future and to participate in it.

Digitalization has taken hold in every industry in the world. With the lockdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic, this trend has accelerated. Digital products have accompanied us in the home office. It is not necessary to be able to program in programming languages such as Java or Python in order to exploit the potential of digitization. Platforms and their programs, such as Facebook, Google, and Instagram, are useful tools for bringing visions and dreams into the world with the help of digital products. Software is a major determinant of our shared future on this planet. That’s why we talk about the digital age. Surfing on this technology wave can be learned just like surfing.

Agility and femininity are useful qualities for the digital age because the ability to deal with complexity and unpredictability is better handled with feminine principles, also called Yin qualities by the ancient Chinese. Being agile instead of doing agile.

As a member of the Diversity Council of, I first dealt with the topic of diversity in gender, culture, language, generations, disabilities, and others. Since the greatest interest was in the topic of gender and women were looking for my support in the technology environment, I took a closer look at my own story and my path as a woman in computer science to show other women a way. The pandemic with home office has forced almost everyone of us to acquire technological tools. Women often find it difficult to accept these. I want to show here how women can use these opportunities for themselves.

Even though feminine and masculine energy should be balanced by both sexes, just like Yin and Yang by the ancient samurai thousands of years ago, the feminine principle plays a greater role for women in general. In my trainings on the topic of agility, I have observed for many years how the dynamics change when a team has a large proportion of women. Men also allow themselves to live the feminine principles, which I will describe in more detail in a later chapter. In teams that consist only of men, the masculine principle predominates. In the composition of a team, a balance of Yin and Yang is also healthy.

Surfing the technology wave

For women, surfing the technology wave means having digital tools available to realize their wishes and life goals. Women use the latest technology to use it to make the world a better place. They want to use the tools as tools for their goals. Technology is not an end in itself for them.

Women encounter inner boundaries, intangible barriers, where they have to learn to deal with their self-doubts and self-judgments in order to exploit their potential in the digital age. They have to dare to do so. This way, this path becomes a personal growth path. This means overcoming fears and shame.

When I asked talented women who are aware of their great potential what they experience as the greatest challenge and frustration in business, they named the following:

  • The feeling of not being valued and rejected and not being taken seriously.
  • Self-doubt about one’s own qualifications and competence.
  • Old-fashioned hierarchies and power structures that prevent women from moving forward.
  • Feeling overwhelmed by constantly new technologies, which can damage self-confidence.
  • The feeling of loneliness in a management world dominated by men. This puts pressure on self-confidence. Women are a minority in management, especially in the technology sector, and therefore feel lonely. They want like-minded people as conversation partners. Be stronger together.

But there is hope. Women are the world’s up-and-comers and will have more autonomy and opportunities in the coming years than ever before. To meet the needs of women in the digital world, we need their participation. We cannot expect men to design all these applications and platforms for us without our visions.

Women have many skills and talents that they want to give to the world as a gift. They feel like they can’t fully express them in the way they would like to. So there is a gap between what they currently think is possible and what is potentially possible for them. To close this gap, an inner growth process is necessary. Women long not only to fulfill jobs in which they earn exactly as much as men and have exactly as much influence, but they want to make a positive contribution to the whole that gives them time for relationships, family, and children at the same time. They want to move towards their destiny.

In the digital age, there are enormous opportunities virtually at our fingertips. With new technologies such as the Internet, the cloud and blockchain, humanity has created a new nervous system of interconnectedness. New forms of collaboration and sharing are possible. But the complexity of the systems is also increasing. These new systems are not linear but chaotic, contradictory and vulnerable. The feminine, which is particularly embodied by women, can handle these qualities well. The new systems are more like a living organism than a machine and need care and attention like a garden. Women are predestined for this. Unfortunately, I come across very few people in this domain, probably less than 20%.

My mission is to empower women to find their place in the digital age. For a healthy future of our civilization, the feminine is more important than ever. There are scientific studies on this. In a TEDx video about the “Athena Doctrine” John Gerzema describes his research on this.

Why is it that women do not use these new opportunities as a means to fulfill their longing to follow their destiny? This is a paradox. It is because they cannot yet use this potential for themselves and cannot experience, see, hear, smell and feel it. It takes a personal growth step. Abraham Maslow called this self-updating, essentially upgrading the self, like a software program.

In the next chapters I would like to describe how it is possible to bridge this gap with the help of the Feminine Agility Model