It seems like today women are better positioned than ever before to rise to leadership roles in technology.

Not only do companies have many kinds of support structures in place, such as women’s networks and leadership development courses, but there is an increasing number of women at the top who can serve as role models or inspiration. Externally, groups like the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), the Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology, Girls Who Code, and other organizations aim to support women in the industry and increase the percentage of women entering the tech space as well.

Nevertheless, women are still a distinct minority in the technology workforce –and an even smaller proportion of corporate leadership. In the 1980s, women represented a peak of between 35 and 40 percent of the computing and information technology (IT) workforce in the U.S. By 2011, that percentage dropped to about 25 percent, according to NCWIT. This coincided with a decrease in the percentage of women majoring in computer science degrees in college.

Our research in this area shows that while women in tech are working hard, they don’t necessarily believe they know how to get to the top. At The Glass Hammer’s November 2012 Women in Tech career event, we repeatedly heard that young women were confused about the practical steps they need to take to make it to leadership.