Olga KravchenkoOlga’s VR App Musemio transforms the way children experience culture by using engaging VR elements to educate.

She now plans to develop the app so that parents and families can track how their children are learning, whilst also continuing to help cultural institutions improve how they interact with younger digital generations

Tell us a bit about yourself, background and your current role

I am CEO and co-founder of Musemio, a VR edtech platform that brings culture to life for children. We create educational games based on cultural concepts and museums around the world to open up children’s imagination. Our next biggest project coming right after International Women’s Day is an international museum partnership that will help children to get excited about technology and coding all powered by culture and history. Our newest product that is selling internationally is a unique AR/VR book “The Case of the Missing Cleopatra” that allows children to deepen their knowledge in Egyptian history and develop 21st century curriculum skills at the same time.

Did you ever sit down and plan your career?

No, but I was always encouraged by my parents to explore any crazy ideas that would come to my head of what could be my passion in life – from being an actress to running a VR startup.

Have you faced any career challenges along the way and how did you overcome these?

As a young woman in technology, people have been very encouraging and supportive of my initiative, while at the same time, some people have not taken me seriously enough to want to do business with me. I believe this is a persistent unconscious bias that exists in business relationships, but I just keep going and find people along the way that see me as s professional and help me to get to the next step in my entrepreneurial journey.

What has been your biggest career achievement to date?

Launching the Dino Learning Pack, this is an educational box that expands and it bridges physical and digital learning. We’ve seen a huge spike in users on our app on Christmas Day.

What one thing do you believe has been a major factor in you achieving success? 

Support from people around me. From my universities, both Queen Mary and King’s College London, who provided me with free business education as well as my first funding to prove the idea to initiatives like Sky that helped me to believe in myself and actually turn the concept into a business.

What top tips would you give to an individual who is trying to excel in their career in technology?

Don’t be afraid to try and believe that you are capable of delivering on a big vision. Follow your passion, find people that achieved what you want to achieve in 2-5 years time, and try to make them your ‘secret’ mentor’. ‘Secret mentor’ is an individual you look up to and who can help you with practical advice on how to get from point A to B.

Do you believe there are still barriers for success for women working in tech, if so, how can these barriers be overcome?

We live in the best time for women to realise their potential and there is a huge amount of support available to kickstart careers both in technology and entrepreneurship. However, unconscious bias is still an issue that stops our society from becoming its best version of itself – a safe and equal space for everyone. Also, we need to take intersectionality into consideration when speaking about equal access and barriers and think critically whether we are really creating equal opportunities for all.

What do you think companies can do to support and progress the careers of women working in technology?

I think that there is a lot of talk about diversity in the workplace and tackling gender bias, but not many actions are being taken in reality. Companies should stop just talking about it being a safe place, but put the actionable steps to actually make it inclusive. This would encourage more women to get into the tech sector which is still very male-dominated and can seem intimidating, especially for young women.

There is currently only 17% of women working in tech, if you could wave a magic wand, what is the one thing you would do to accelerate the pace of change for women in the industry?

Stop parents from calling their daughters bossy when they assertive and show leadership at a young age. It seems irrelevant, but those early years really shape us and our perception of our self-worth. Technology has the power to change the world and I wish young girls were encouraged to think seriously (but in a playful way) about how they can contribute to this world when they grow up.

What resources do you recommend for women working in tech?

  • com
  • Femstreet
  • Invisible Women: Exposing Data Bias in a World Designed for Men
  • LikeMindedFemales