At just 31 years old, Katy Lynch is a leader in the social media game and the bad*** new CEO of Techweek, an annual tech conference that takes place in six cities in the U.S. (seven if you include the newest addition, Havana, Cuba). Since the third annual Techweek NYC kicks off on Monday, October 12 with tons of code-savvy female speakers, including Alexandra Wilkis Wilson, CEO and Co-founder of GLAMSQUAD (an awesome company that's funded by Built By Girls Ventures, who also funds us!), we were excited to have the chance to chat with Katy for a few minutes. She dropped a whole lot of knowledge on us about being a girl in the tech world and achieving your career goals (and clued us in to a very on-point pizza app).
Cambio: So how did you get to be the #GirlBoss that you are today?
Katy Lynch: When I first moved here, I worked for a travel startup called Where I've Been, it was Facebook's largest travel application, and I was hired as the head of social media...There were a lot of marketing agencies that were doing social media but they weren't doing it well, and I was doing it well. And so I kind of...recognized that there was truly a need for social media services, which was one of the biggest reasons why I spun off and started SocialKaty, which was my business [editor's note: she has since sold her start-up company, SocialKaty, to Manifest Digital] which essentially specialized in helping startups and tech entrepreneurs with their social media strategies.
What made you want to sign on with the Techweek team?
I think it all goes back to the fact that I ran SocialKaty for four years and a huge focus for the first couple years of that company was with helping startups...and I really built up my name and reputation by helping the local tech community...I know ultimately my passion lies with helping the tech community.
What does #BUILTBYGIRLS mean to you?
#BUILTBYGIRLS is, in my opinion, shining a light on young girls today who are building cool technologies or companies that will impact today and tomorrow.
Why should girls consider joining the tech industry?
Today we use technology in almost every aspect of our lives. We use it to travel, we use it to communicate with our friends and family, at work. When you start thinking about the next generation...technology is really going to have a much greater impact on their life. Which is why I believe that tech is an industry that young girls should be pursuing. We should be encouraging the next generation to for example, [learn] to code. I mean, I think that every kid and every young adult should know the basics of coding. It should be taught in schools. If mathematics and science are being taught, then so should coding. Kids should have a basic understanding of how technology works and the best way to do that, I believe, is for kids to understand that technology and coding is a big way for them to understand how tech works.
How can girls get involved in the tech industry?
I would say a couple things. Networking. When I was getting started with SocialKaty back in 2010, I looked into female entrepreneur groups, I looked into tech conferences, like a Techweek, and other meet ups that I could join. It was important to me and it's still important to me to mingle with other entrepreneurs and thought leaders who were doing similar things as me...Never underestimate the power of networking and the power of getting yourself and your ideas out there to likeminded people....The other piece of advice is seek a mentor. Right? So get awesome advice from other men and women who can share their knowledge and their expertise, things that they've experienced within the tech industry. I think thats important, too.
So, let's talk fun stuff. What are your fave apps right now?
I have two, and they're two very different things that have very different uses. So the first is ...Dryv, and it's for dry cleaning, for getting like your clothes washed. So you essentially enter your address and the type of clothing you want: folded, washed or pressed, whatever. And they send someone to your apt, they collect your clothes, they wash your clothes and then they deliver them back to you beautifuly folded. And it's a good price as well for what you get. The other app that I love is called Push for Pizza. So essentially you enter the toppings that you like on pizza, and then the app tells you pizza places near your location. And so all you do is once you've entered your information every time that you want a pizza you push a button and pizza arrives at your doorstep. It's genius.
And with that, we're in love.