InfoComm 2019: Leading Women into a More Diverse and Empowering AV Industry


The Audio Visual industry is dominated by men, with women making up a mere 14% of the industry. But that does not mean that the women in AV are not making waves and pushing for change. In fact, from one year to the next, change can quite literally be seen.

Take the AVIXA Women’s Council Breakfast at InfoComm 2019 this year. The large exhibition room where they hosted the event was overflowing with people; they had to bring in new tables as more people poured in. AVIXA leadership couldn’t stop touting the growth of their local councils, more than doubling from 17 to 40 in one year.

Though things aren’t quite leveled out for women in AV, strides are happening. What does this mean for women in the industry today, and women who might join the industry in the near future? In this podcast, we listen to thought leader, technology marketing strategist, and former head of marketing at Sennheiser Petro Shimonishi.

After enjoying the event, Shimonishi joined us to speak authoritatively on the benefits a company can reap by building diverse teams, both in gender and culture. She confidently cited a study demonstrating a 25% revenue increase as a result of diversity in the workplace.

“Business is all about teamwork,” Shimonishi said, and a strong team is one made up of a variety of genders and backgrounds. With women making the majority of tech purchases for the household, having females on an AV team gives new insight to marketing strategies for sound and visual purchases, and what end-user are looking for in this experience economy.

Beyond divulging financial insights for marketing tech, Shimonishi gave sage managerial advice for leaders. “Know your people,” she said. This constant conversation between team members and management, regardless of gender, is what nurtures the sharing of ideas and uplifts the strengths inherent in a diverse team.

Listen to Shimonishi give her thoughts on recruitment efforts for women in STEAM fields, how leadership has evolved in AV, and ways AV women can lift each other up, exchange ideas and empower each other to push the industry to new heights.

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