Subscribe

Archive | Event Review

What goes on at a Girl Geek event?

Girl Geek Dinners – A TechGirl Review

A few weeks ago we hosted the second dinner for 2016 of the Girl Geek Dinners Johannesburg. Tech Girl was invited, at the beginning of the year, to come on as the official media partner and I’ve spent a considerable amount of my free time hunting down goodies for our goodie bags and sourcing interesting speakers. Leigh-Ann Fowle and Kirsty Sharman started the dinners in Johannesburg a few years back and are still very much involved. We all dedicate a considerable amount of our personal time to the dinners, as do so many others (shout out to Jade here who always offers to help! Thank you!).

Girl Geek Dinners
Leigh-Ann, Kirsty and me!
Our more recent dinner took place at Hard Rock Cafe on Nelson Mandela Square in Sandton. This is one of my favourite local restaurants, predominantly because of the gorgeous collectors items they have gracing the walls. If you’re a music fan you’re in for a real treat! The food is also rather delicious. Think sliders (mini burgers), yummy Tacos and Cheesy nachos. I think anyone in attendance can agree that the food at Hard Rock goes down as some of the best.

Girl Geek Dinners
All the blur when getting ready to start!
While the ladies in attendance enjoyed a wine tasting arranged by Van Loveren Wines, I was manning the entrance desk. We had a section of the restaurant dedicated to the dinner but the bar and outside area was still open to the general public. Two men at the bar came over to me and asked me what was going on. They’d been listening to our wonderful speaker, Lori Milner, who recently co-authored Own Your Space. Lori was discussing how we, as females, can better function in the corporate arena and, ultimately, own our own space. The gents announced to me that they thought the dinners were sexist.

Girl Geek Dinners
Registration
I had a good chuckle because the dinners have never specified that men cannot attend. Over the last few we’ve had a few gents added to the guest list and they’ve all had a great time (ask them!). While our focus has always been on uplifting women in the tech space, over the years I think the Girl Geek Dinners have grown to encompass something more. They’ve grown to represent the coming together of positive individuals (yes, mainly females) and sharing information relating to the corporate and tech space while just giving attendees a great night out and opportunity to meet new friends.

Girl Geek Dinners

Sexism is defined as (pulled from Merriam-Webster):

1 : prejudice or discrimination based on sex; 2 : behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex.

I think the very thing the Girl Geek Dinners do is go against sexism. We don’t discriminate and we try counter those typical stereotypes placed on women in the corporate sector (specifically industries like technology) while also encouraging open dialogue and education. It’s an interesting discussion that has touched a cord with me. Recently I was made aware that a few of my (male) colleagues in the industry had verbalised that Tech Girl, as a blog, was anti-feminist. That the content I was producing went against everything it should stand for. It’s an interesting thought really. This blog was built by me from the ground up and anything it stands for is what I stand for. What should it stand for? Blogs are an extension of ourselves and so they can only really embody our own thoughts and feelings. Unfortunately (or fortunately), I’ve always felt confident in my space as a woman crafting content in the gaming and technology space. Because of this confidence I’ve also been able to embody a sense of humour and been able to take a tongue in cheek look at certain aspects of the industry. I like that about me and, I hope, others like that about the blog. I’m proud of what I produce and proud of the spare time I’ll happily sacrifice to hunting down sponsors for an event like the Girl Geek Dinners or helping a fellow woman fight a Tinder battle.

I think this is what the Girl Geek Dinners are about.

Girl Geek Dinners
Our speaker Lori Milner
They’re not about sexism, or discrimination of women in the tech space or about one upping your social network. They’re about a group of women helping each other love who they are. They’re about us supporting and uplifting one another in a space that is fun and friendly. They’re about all the good we sometimes miss.

It’s a special organisation and one I’m proud to be apart of.

Girl Geek Dinners

So to answer the initial question: no, the Girl Geek Dinners are most definitely not sexist.

They’re a fantastic opportunity for us to uplift one another, women or men, in a fun space over a good glass of wine. You also get to take home a really great goodie bag packed with some great products. This last dinner saw a voucher from AlwaysOn (I spent mine in the airport on the way to rAge), a sample can of Batiste dry shampoo (my go to after gym), funky socks from ToePorn, a Cadbury PS bar and vouchers from Take Charge SA, Placecol, Poise Brands and the Blogger workshop happening in Johannesburg later this month.A

Our 1st 2013 Dinner!

Our 1st Dinner for 2013 was a wonderful success!

We had two lovely speakers for the evening – Dr Julie Taylor from Google and Melanie Minnaar founder of the Twitter Blanket Drive.

Melanie Minnaar and Dr Julie Taylor
Melanie Minnaar and Dr Julie Taylor

Julie’s talk was around technology, women and Africa. She looked at the opportunities available and what Google is doing to help women enter the tech space. Melanie spoke about using social media for good and the impact that the blanket drive has had, as well as how phenomenally it has grown since inception.

Our venue was the beautiful Gwefey. With a gorgeous view & stunning food, they were wonderful hosts.

Our Stunning Venue - Gwefey
Our Stunning Venue – Gwefey

Once again, thank you to our fantastic sponsors. Without them our event would not be possible! Sponsors for February were: Mowana SpaFred FeltonFair Lady MagazineHeavnly Handmade (they sponsored our stunning bags), Rainbow NationShoe Candy, Capzi, Nescafe SAStandard BankVodacom and Ki Fit. Thanks to Melanie for arranging a host of amazing goodies this month!

A special mention to VW who sponsored a new Golf 7 and Beetle to be driven by two lucky Girl Geeks!

Leana & Mr Shai Guy from VW
Leana & Mr Shai Guy from VW

Lastly, thanks to BrandsEye for sponsoring our tracking report.

Our next event will be in April – look forward to seeing you all then!

Our 1st Birthday Bash!

With the festive season well and truly behind us, we thought it was time to review our last event – our 1st Birthday party!

IMG_6325

As usual, our sponsors did not disappoint. We had a fantastic goodie bag and a plenty of prizes. A special mention must be made of Blackberry who kindly sponsored our welcome drinks. Thanks to all our other sponsors: @KiehlsSA  @RussellHobbsSA Apple SA Bobbleheads SA @TheCupcake_Lady  @CandiMakeup  EA Games @SKTheatres @DigitalSushiZA  @FinWeek Pulse DJ’s & @PrezenceDigital.

Our welcome drink sponsor Blackberry

Our lovely goodie bags 🙂 

IMG_6420IMG_6423

Our two lovely speakers for the evening were Lynette Hundermark and Tiana Cline. Lynette gave an interesting insight into the world of Mobile App development and her career journey, while Tiana shared some great gadget reviews.

IMG_6461

Thanks to everyone that joined us and has shared in the Girl Geek journey this far.

On that note, we are looking for AV equipment for our Girl Geek Dinners – if anyone has a contact for us, please get in touch.

Our next event will be held in February – look forward to seeing you all there!

A Fantastic Geeky Event

The Girl Geek Dinners have proved to be extremely popular in Jozi, and our September event was no exception. Tickets were quickly sold out for the event and what a night it was!

Girl Geeks were welcomed with a stunning drink provided by The Reciprocal Wine Company. They are importers of a stunning range of international wines. Later on in the evening, there was an opportunity for wine tasting. They also offered up a fantastic prize!

Leigh-Ann (Event Organiser) & Tarryn (Reciprocal Wines)

We have to thank our venue – the fantastic Moemas for supporting us! The menu was absolutely amazing – if you are looking for a fab spot for dinner (or lunch, or any food really!) you won’t be disappointed.

Our speaker for the evening was the lovely Sarah Britten (or @Anatinus as she is known on Twitter). She shared her insights into being a brand ambassador for Land Rover in SA and on social media in general, as well as her amazing lipstick art!

Our goodie bags were once again full of awesome things. Thanks to our sponsors: Moemas, Reciprocal Wines, Glossybox, Wireless Wipes SA, Brainstorm Magazine and Cadbury Bubbly chocolate. A special mention to those that sponsored prizes too: Glossybox gave three lovely boxes away & Reciprocal Wines for their wine decanter.

In November, Girl Geek Dinners in Jozi turns one and we plan to celebrate! Save the date for our last dinner for the year – 21 November 2012.

Until then!

Leigh-Ann 

Event Organiser

Girl Geek Dinners JHB

A Fantastic Girl Geek Evening!

The Girl Geek Dinners have been gaining momentum in Johannesburg, and our July event was no exception.

Our venue was the gorgeous Full Stop Cafe and it proved to be a fabulous choice.

The Girl Geeks were welcomed with a stunning cocktail from Bos Ice Tea and each received a fabulous goodie bag.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our first speaker for the evening was Tiana Cline – she spoke about “Tech Makeovers” and gave the audience some insights into the latest gadgets on the market.

Next up was the dynamic Heidi Brauer who gave us her take on marketing in tough times. In case you didn’t realise, we are all in marketing in one form or another!  The best part of her talk – her advice to stay true to yourself – in life and in business.  Everyone left feeling incredibly inspired.

We would like to thank our generous sponsors, without whom our Dinners would not be possible: BiogenBos Ice Tea,  Carmien TeaTip Top NailsThe CounterITWebGet SmarterThe OOH! Box 

We look forward to welcoming everyone to our next event in September!

Our Fabulous February Dinner!

The second Girl Geek Dinner took place on 21 February 2012 at Higher Ground Restaurant. What an amazing venue! Gorgeous view, amazing food and a stunning welcome drink – the restaurant dazzled us.

It is amazing to see the success of the Dinners and how we have grown from our first one – Geek Girls (and Guys!) of Jozi turned out to show their support and we more than doubled our event attendees.

Our first speaker was the dynamic Lana Strydom, who heads up Digital Marketing and Media for FNB. She gave a very interesting talk on FNB’s approach to social media and how it has helped grow their brand and sales.

Second up was the fabulous Tiana Cline, Editor of Girl Guides. Tiana is passionate about women in tech and she gave an amazing overview of some of the new gaming devices on the market. It certainly got people talking and we look forward to having Tiana speak again at future events.

A big thank you has to go out to our amazing sponsors who supported us – without them our event would not be possible: Higher Ground (Welcome Drink), Body Thrills, Bos Ice Tea, Get Smarter, Worker Ant Production & Design, Elizabeth Arden, O Magazine, Connect Magazine & T-Thyme Catering.

All in all a stunning night was had with many ladies chatting, making new contacts and simply enjoying a night out!

We look forward to the continuing success of the Dinners in Jozi!