It’s one thing to talk about increasing diversity at your company. It’s another to both recognize there’s a need to take steps to better balance opportunity and representation for different types of people, and then put the processes, goals, and measurements in place to make that reality at your organization. That’s what TaskRabbit CEO Stacy Brown-Philpot (pictured)has been working to do since her arrival in Silicon Valley. My Colleague, Paula Bernier goes into some detail about how Brown-Philpot went from collecting newspaper subscriber payments in Detroit to CEO of TaskRabbit – with stints at Goldman Sachs and Google in-between.
This woman can and should be a role model – hopefully paving the way for more diversity in the tech world.
Harvard Business Review surveyed 1,800 professionals and showed companies with more diverse management are more innovative and perform better than their peers, confirming that it's not just Olympic athletes who can benefit from this effect. Similar research has shown a direct link between increased diversity and similar levels of creativity and ease in hiring talent.
Yet, with all this research to support diversity, many were quite shocked last year when it was revealed the combined black workforces of many of the world's largest tech companies could fit on a single jumbo jet. Once the news came out, the tech industry became center-stage for increasing workplace diversity.
In other words, increased diversity is a win for those who are hired as well as the companies doing the hiring.
In some cases there is a lack of interest from the minority community in attaining tech jobs… It’s unclear if this has to do with the perception they may not get hired. The good news is Brown-Philpot shows everyone that you can make it in the Valley... The goal is attainable.
There are many companies now actively looking to increase their tech diversity. It's really great news. We’re doing our part as well here at TMC – we recently launched a Tech Diversity Award (application) specifically to shine the spotlight on the companies looking to make a difference by increasing the types of people they hire.
We’ve done this as part of our Workplace Excellence Award program which also recognized Tech Culture (2016 winners) and Social Responsibility (also new). Together we hope to make the tech world a better and more inclusive place.