Dec 4, 2018 | Techcelerate Ventures |
Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 2018 A Practical Guide for Entrepreneurs 2 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech FOREWORD 3 INTRODUCTION 8 THE GUIDE 15 Understanding bias and building consensus 16 Planning your D&I strategy 26 Building and implementing 36 Diverse and inclusive hiring 37 Creating an inclusive workplace 43 Creating inclusive products and services 47 Case studies 54 Tools and resources 66 METHODOLOGY & GLOSSARY 71 CONTRIBUTORS 72 Contents 3 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech Foreword Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 2018 has been an enormous year for the global technology ecosystem, with new initiatives, companies and technologies emerging that truly have the potential to change the world. Karma raised its Series A to continue its fight against food waste; Zinc, the company builder solving the developed world's toughest social issues, launched its second mission to help people hit hardest by automation and globalisation; Zola, The RealReal, 23andMe and ClassPass raised some of the largest funding rounds of 2018; Stitch Fix stock is currently up 80% since its IPO last November; the first CRISPR clinical trial began in Europe for people with blood disorders; Entrepreneur First expanded into Berlin and Paris There is so much to be excited by. The common thread connecting each of the companies above is that they all have female founders. This was not intended to shock or amaze. Such a range of achievements - from running public companies, to developing life- changing biotechnology, to hyper- scaling tech businesses - can be expected of any high achievers. Yet the reality today is that these women are an exception to the rule. Other underrepresented groups - minorities across race, class, education, sexual orientation, self-identification, and physical and cognitive ability - are still not even a small part of the overall narrative, sadly. The environment is not changing fast enough. 93% of capital invested in European companies this year went to all-male founding teams. We cannot measure the imbalance in funding allocated to other underrepresented communities, but those figures would certainly be tough reading also. Venture investment has the privilege of granting companies runway with which to build the future. It is a scary thought, particularly as technology's impact on humanity accelerates, that this future is in the hands of an undiverse minority. At the root of this culture are long-standing, deeply entrenched stereotypes and misconceptions sewn into the fibres of tech over 40 years ago. We cannot shy away from how difficult it will be to turn this tide, but with initiatives like this guide we can become increasingly conscious of the forces that hinder us, and equip ourselves with the practical skills and mindfulness needed to allay them. It is difficult to quantify how much talent and value has evaporated away from our industry because of diversity inertia. Only once people of all backgrounds, abilities, and perspectives feel safe and confident to participate will we truly realise the potential we are collectively capable of. I am confident that there are a majority of good souls out there who are aligned to win and engaged to make a difference. Together, we can cultivate an environment that equalises opportunity and accelerates outcomes for all. Niklas Zennstrm FOUNDING PARTNER AND CEO AT ATOMICO 4 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech The uncomfortable truth is that the technology industry today is not a place in which everyone, of any gender, race, disability, religion, sexuality, socio-economic background, can thrive and succeed. This is one of the most significant challenges we face, and the damaging impact of excluding so much talent compounds with each year that passes. At the current rate of progress, it will take hundreds of years to reach a point where women get an equal share of funding to men. Less than 0.2% of funding is raised by women of colour in the US, and we have no idea how many LGBTQ+ or founders with disabilities there are in the tech industry, as this has yet to be measured at scale. Technology, and the architects of that technology, have tackled some of the world's biggest problems: they've helped eliminate diseases, and even landed robots on Mars. By connecting people all over the world, technology has helped to disseminate education and increased our understanding of one another as human beings. I'm convinced that together, and in spite of the challenge facing us, we can tackle the lack of diversity and inclusion in our companies. This practical guide2 is intended to help anyone leading, working or investing in technology companies promote diversity and inclusion in their businesses. It's not a silver bullet and there is no 'one-size-fits-all' solution. Instead, this guide is intended to increase understanding of the complex and nuanced subject of diversity and inclusion in business more fully. It's also intended to be a living resource for founders to continue to add to as they create and discover new answers (at www.inclusionintech.com). As an investor in very early stage companies and running a small organisation myself, I understand that implementing best practice isn't always straightforward. However, this resource should make it easier to make a start. I hope it prompts thinking and initiates progress in advancing diversity and inclusion in tech, which will further our collective understanding as an industry as to how to enact continuous positive change. Creating this toolkit has been a collective effort. It draws on the work of the VC Toolkit created by 10 Diversity VC volunteers and contributors published earlier this year. I'd like to thank all the people who have volunteered their time and expertise; we are extremely grateful for the contributions from everyone who took part. CO-FOUNDER AND CEO AT DIVERSITY VC Francesca Warner 1 British Business Bank, Diversity VC & BVCA Study, 2018 2 This guide is part of the wider body of work at Diversity VC, a non-profit group co-founded by a group of individuals in 2017 who work in the VC industry. Our mission is to promote diversity and inclusion in the tech and venture capital industries. 5 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 1 British Business Bank, Diversity VC & BVCA Study, 2018 2 This guide is part of the wider body of work at Diversity VC, a non-profit group co-founded by a group of individuals in 2017 who work in the VC industry. Our mission is to promote diversity and inclusion in the tech and venture capital industries. There are clear business benefits to a diverse and inclusive workplace. It promotes staff loyalty, efficiency, creative output, and attractiveness to new talent to name but a few examples. When you combine these factors together, we frequently see that diversity and inclusion leads to enhanced performance. Indeed, recent research shows us that companies in the top quartile for gender and racial diversity perform better financially,1 and inclusive workplaces are proven to attract and retain the brightest talent,2 as well as demonstrate improved channels of communication and improved social capital.3 When successful, Diversity & Inclusion strategies are proven to bring real bottom-line benefits to business; whether by improving efficiency, increasing productivity, driving employee engagement, or shaping an outstanding employee experience in an age of fast-growth and continuous innovation. Creating a D&I strategy that will meet your business requirements and successfully achieve your objectives can be a challenge. However, by clearly managing and communicating expectations, obtaining buy-in and resource, or simply getting your colleagues and employees excited and on board can all impact the long-term success of your D&I strategy. Get it right, and a D&I policy could transform how your business collaborates or works. Whether you already have a fully- formed strategy, or you're thinking about D&I for the first time, this simple guide will help you to plan, deploy, monitor and improve your strategy for tech companies big and small. Creating a fair and inclusive workplace in the tech industry 1 Hunt, V et al. Why Diversity Matters. McKinsey and Company: Our Insights (January 2015), accessed on October 01, 2018. 2 Keller, S et al. Attracting and retaining the right talent. McKinsey and Company: Our Insights (November 2017), accessed on October 01, 2018. 3 Heffernan, M. The secret ingredient that makes some teams better than others. Ideas. Ted.Com (May 05, 2015), accessed on October 01, 2018. Dr Victoria Bernath Editor-in-Chief, Diversity VC 6 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech Summary Diversity & Inclusion in Tech UNDERSTANDING BIAS AND BUILDING CONSENSUS PLANNING YOUR D&I STRATEGY Start by learning about bias Educate yourself and actively engage with the topic of bias. As a start, try watching Facebook and Google Ventures' videos on bias. Educate others about bias Share this guide, or run bias training within your firm. For small companies, you may involve you entire office from the start; for larger companies this might be a small, core team of stakeholders. Do note that not all bias training is created equal - read this guide and choose carefully. Evaluate all aspects of your workplace (including any existing D&I strategies) You can evaluate your workplace through discussion groups, surveys and perhaps independent consultants. Write a Diversity & Inclusion document Use the document to write down company values, expected outcomes of a D&I strategy and projected timeline. Map out communities within your company Your communities might be groups with the same social situation (e.g. employees with kids) or specific work teams (e.g. the HR team, the engineering team and so on). Give each community 'ownership' in contributing to their own D&I strategy Ownership could be obtained through surveys, or setting up voluntary 'task forces'. Build a timeline, and agree a budget, for implementing D&I initiatives Some D&I strategies might require minimal (maybe no) cost to implement (e.g. scanning job applications for gendered terms). Others might require funding (e.g. a bias training programme for the whole company). Allow for failure Let everyone know that not every new idea will work. Build a culture of constructive feedback. An overview to understanding, planning and implementing new D&I strategies. Overview 7 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech BUILDING AND IMPLEMENTING HIRING Source candidates from a diverse talent pool Build an approachable company profile Demonstrate an inclusive work environment (e.g. through offering flexible working) Remove biased wording from job descriptions (e.g. gendered words like 'competitive' and 'determined') Set targets for your 'candidate shortlist' to ensure a diverse candidate pool is fairly represented Experiment with new ways of finding candidates, such as Twitter or Instagram (sometimes the best candidates come from unconventional backgrounds and won't be on standard job boards) Remove bias when assessing candidates Focus on a candidate's competency, rather than their credentials Remove photos, ages, educations and company names Score candidates on the same objective criteria Don't rush the decision Early stages at the company Check whether your new recruit has any specific requirements (e.g. flexible working requirements, specific office equipment) so the company is ready when they arrive on their first day Educate new recruits about your workplace (give them a guide to any workplace jargon and let them know about different interest / support groups) and share the company strategy Create a buddy system (making sure the system is inclusive, e.g. crossing different ages, ethnicities etc.) WORKPLACE Balance your teams Use Belbin or Myers-Briggs techniques to check your teams have a balance of roles, and they each know each others' strengths Development plans and feedback Pair new hires with one or more team members (Buddy System) to make sure the new candidate feels welcome in their team and understand the company as a whole Working environment Check the physical environment matches the needs of employees and customers (e.g. gender neutral toilets, wheelchair accessible entrances, flexible furniture solutions and induction loop for hearing impaired colleagues and guests) Human resources Check both the legal standards and best practice for your workplace. This may vary between sectors. Try developing inclusion, parental and adoption policies; and consider training programmes for equality, human rights and bias. Social Consider whether an employee resource groups (ERGs) is appropriate for your firm - they may be a helpful forum for discussing community- specific needs and opportunities. Consider the time, location and nature of employee commitments and socials, to make sure PRODUCT DESIGN Look at guidelines for accessible design These could be legal requirements (such CVAA's requirements on video broadcaster) or helpful guidance (such as WCAG2.0, for websites and software). There may also be 'native' settings available in the operating system in which your building. Start early It is cheapest and easiest if you build inclusion into your product from the start. Think about / review your target audience: does it include underrepresented groups? Think about your mock-ups - do they represent a diverse pool of potential users? Think about tech specs Check your product will still work on basic operating systems. Think about language Translate your product into widely spoken languages such as English, Chinese and Spanish. Also think about reading ability and dyslexia - keep language simple, and try using dyslexia-friendly fonts. Think about visual impairments Use simulators to see how your app will look for those with partial sight or colourblindness. Also think about embedding audio controls, and options to scale font sizes. Think about physical disabilities Understand what assistive technologies are used by your community. Large buttons and clear fonts could be a useful starting point for inclusive design. FEEDBACK Seek feedback Whether they are your internal team, or your external users, make sure to get feedback (through customer surveys, forums, customer support and focus groups) to understand how your hiring, workplace, products and designs could be improved. This publication is intended as a living resource, we strongly encourage your feedback. Please don't hesitate to get in touch via our website, www.inclusionintech.com Introduction 8 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 9 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech Women are still under-represented in senior positions across the tech industry and female founders also receive a smaller share of investment: ck of diversity could not be more stark when it comes to how funding is allocated in that all-male founding teams receive 93% of the capital invested and account for rk to see that these shares have not changed in the last years. g Source: 92% 95% 94% 93% 93% 93% 2% 1% 2% 3% 2% 2% 6% 4% 4% 4% 5% 5% 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 0 25 50 75 100 Male Female Mixed Capital raised (%) / # of deals (%)Capital raised and # of deals by founding team gender (%) Male Female Mixed Introduction Diversity & Inclusion in Tech The current state of diversity and inclusion in tech Where does the tech industry currently stand on the issue of diversity and inclusion? A growing body of research in Europe and North America informs us that minority groups are still widely unrepresented in the tech industry. The 2018 State of European Tech is one report which offers a critical view on this issue. CONTEXT Baroness Martha Lane Fox Founder and Chair of Doteveryone We need to take the chance to shape the digital world before it shapes us. 10 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech However, the 2018 State of European Tech report made it clear that there is great opportunity and momentum to improve diversity and inclusion in tech companies across the continent. 45% of women and 36% of men agree that they've made changes to their behaviour in the last 12 months. Gender composition by job title for Executive-level positions of selected European Series A and B venture-backed companies t of 175 CTOs that work at VC-backed European tech companies that raised a Series ked Source: 270 Series A or 2018. % of Executives 6% 1% 11% 20% 21% 9% 9% 19% 94% 99% 89% 80% 79% 91% 91% 81% Chief Executive Officer Chief Technology Officer Chief Operating Officer Chief Financial Officer Chief Marketing Officer Chief Revenue Officer (or similar) Chief Product Officer CxO Other 0 20 40 60 80 100 Male Female Mixed ories of discrimination in the tech industry, the issue of diversity and inclusion has cording to many respondents, this changed how many now behave. 45% of women and e made changes to their behaviour in the last 12 months. esult of clusion Source: Female Male 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 % of respondents I have changed my behaviour as a result of increased focus on diversity and inclusion Agree Neither agree nor disagree Disagree Note: Based on a sample of executives in CxO positions at 270 European VC-backed tech companies that raised a Series A or B round between 1 October 2017 and 30 September 2018. Male Female Introduction Diversity & Inclusion in Tech Niklas Zennstrm CEO and Founding Partner at Atomico Diversity means difference. Whether founder or employee, each one of us is different. Typically, our differences can be grouped into three broad categories: Demographic age, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, physical resources Experiential economic or social position, education, occupation, faith, abilities, dependents, caring responsibilities Cognitive how we approach problems and think about things. Diversity describes the range of human differences within a group of people. Diversity is being invited to the party; inclusion is being asked to dance. Vern Myers Lawyer, entrepreneur and author WHAT DO WE MEAN BY DIVERSITY? 11 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 12 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech Inclusion is the act of making someone feel part of a group. Everyday business practices For example: poor quality decision-making, which is the result of homogeneous 'groupthink' (the practice of making decisions within a group of people that all conform to a certain demographic norm, i.e. team members are all of one gender or ethnicity). Business objectives For example: slower rates of innovation affecting competitive edge. In Spain, research involving more than 4,277 companies discovered that companies with more women were more likely to introduce radical new innovations into the market over a two-year period.1 Company performance For example: the quality and quantity of products/ services provided. In England, the London Annual Business Survey analysed data from 7,615 firms to conclude that 'culturally diverse leadership teams were more likely to develop new products than those with homogenous leadership'.2 Employee engagement For example: a lack of inclusive policies in the workplace regarding physical and mental wellbeing for working people incur enormous costs to businesses and economies. In the UK, 'lower work productivity due to common mental health problems costs in (approximate) excess of 15bn a year, and over 170 million working days are lost to sickness absence'.3 The risks of overlooking diversity and inclusion in tech companies are manifold and affect all aspects of business at great cost. Risks can affect: WHY DO DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION MATTER? In terms of the workplace, inclusion involves people's well-being at work, safeguarding people's mental and physical resources, and championing rights and cultural differences all of which collectively help people to suceed at work. By its nature, inclusion is difficult to measure in the workplace. Indeed, whether someone feels included may vary on a day-to-day basis. However, an inclusive environment allows individual contribution to matter and employees are able to perform to their full potential, no matter their background, identity or circumstances. WHAT DO WE MEAN BY INCLUSION? 1 Rock, D and Grant, H. Why Diverse Teams are Smarter. HBR online, November 04, 2016. 2 Ibid. 3 Carew, D et al. Employment, Policy and social inclusion. The British Psychology Society. Online, January 2010, Vol. 23 (pg. 28-31). 13 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech THE OPPORTUNITY Defining a great leader As Doris Kearns Goodwin said: "Good leadership requires you to surround yourself with people of diverse perspectives who can disagree with you without fear of retaliation." Whether a founder, investor or employee you should find that by using an inclusive approach, your team is more motivated, engaged and efficient in their roles. Ultimately, they'll be delivering better results to you. Building a stronger business There are clear business benefits to a diverse and inclusive workplace.4 Indeed, McKinsey's 2018 study showed that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity were 21% more likely to generate more profit than their competitors, and companies in the top quartile for racial and ethnic diversity were 33% more likely to generate more profit their competitors.5 In any fast-growing technology company there are always competing priorities for time, attention and capital. However by taking just a few small steps towards a more diverse and inclusive workplace, these actions could have a significant and positive impact on the culture and financial performance of your firm. Introduction Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 4 Kruse, What is employee engagement Forbes (June 2012), accessed on October 01, 2018. 5 Hunt V et al. Delivering Through Diversity, McKinsey and Company, (January 2018), accessed on October 01, 2018. We need to be far more ambitious and develop an agenda that ties diversity and inclusion to a fundamental commitment to social mobility, and where everyone, no matter their background, can reach their full potential working in our industry. In many ways, tech has and always will be a great enabler, but currently we are failing spectacularly in enabling social mobility. We can and must do more. Steve O'Hear Tech Journalist 14 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech THE ROLE OF THIS PUBLICATION Our mission This publication is meant to serve as a pragmatic and actionable guide for founders and employees for companies of all sizes within the tech industry. We hope to promote diversity and inclusion across the industry so that everyone, regardless of background, has a fair chance to succeed in tech. Who should read this publication? We have written this report to specifically target founders within the tech industries. However, founders can't do it all on their own. We want to give employees especially HR professionals and Diversity and Inclusion leads ways to convince others who have not yet made diversity or inclusion a priority. We want every tech employee to understand diversity and inclusion and its benefits. We also encourage investors, customers, politicians and national leaders to use their considerable influence to accelerate understanding and change. How to use this guide This document is made up of five parts, and describes the process of changing behaviours and attitudes towards diversity and inclusion. For those serious about making lasting changes to their business, we recommend reading this publication in its entirety. There's more work to be done. And we need your help! There is more work to do. The dialogue on diversity and inclusion is still relatively young; each company is different and many practices and tools are early in their development. This guide is therefore intended to prompt the type of questions companies should be asking: it is not a prescriptive set of rules to follow. It is up to the companies themselves to continually debate, innovate around and attend to D&I, to respond to the needs of employees, customers, investors and the wider world. This publication is intended as a living resource, hosted online at www.inclusionintech.com. We strongly encourage your feedback, along with any suggestions or additions you may have. Please do not hesitate to get in touch via our website. The Guide 15 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech PART ONE Understanding bias and building consensus In this section we aim to identify and articulate the need for a Diversity & Inclusion strategy and suggest ways to get buy-in from stakeholders. Building a D&I strategy is an ongoing journey, not a side agenda. Jacob De Geer Co-founder and CEO of iZettle TOP TIPS Define the opportunity for your D&I strategy. Include the precise value and benefits it will bring about for your company. Engage in training to understand the root causes of bias and the structural disadvantages of certain communities. Have internal discussions to understand your company culture around D&I so that you may custom build a strategy that reflects the needs of your company. 16 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 17 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech Crafting this document will also guide you in the process of planning and implementing your strategy. It will help you select the appropriate solutions to meet your firm's needs, ultimately creating a strategy or policy that will deliver tangible results for your team. Building a diverse and inclusive structure is a long-term commitment and requires time, energy, and in some cases, funding. It is important to ensure that the whole team is supportive in building these before you embark on particular initiatives. Technology companies are constantly having to make rapid decisions about where to allocate resources. It is important to ensure that board members of the company, any investors and the management and day-to-day teams are bought into the need for a cohesive and comprehensive Diversity & Inclusion strategy. A key step to ensuring company- wide support is to highlight the fundamental need for a D&I strategy. Ultimately, this means building awareness of the complex and nuanced nature of social justice, inclusion and bias. Where does bias come from? Generally speaking, bias stems from: 1. Excessive reliance on intuition and/or 2.Flawed reasoning.1 Bias is a term that is often misunderstood or misused. This guide is concerned with bias in reference to businesses. For the purpose of this guide, bias refers to preferences, associations and assumptions that align with the historical, social, economic and political disadvantage of specific communities. Later in this chapter, we outline different approaches to, and opportunities for, bias training. In order to get buy-in to a D&I strategy amongst stakeholders, it is worth preparing a short document, setting out reasons why management and employees alike should support the initiative, and the concrete benefits it will deliver. Who owns this document, where will it live, and will it be featured in a staff handbook? If you are a founder, those responsibilities need to be discussed with your fellow founder(s), and/or the leadership team. If you are a HR manager, set up a meeting to discuss these responsibilities with the leadership team. The guide Understanding bias and building consensus 1 Soll, J et al. Outsmart your own biases, Harvard Business Review (May 2015), accessed on October 01, 2018. THE DOCUMENT ON D&I WILL: State the reason for beginning (or revising) a D&I strategy DefineopportunityforyourD&Istrategy Secure senior level backing (i.e. budget, and commitment) Secure internal support necessary to deliver on the project Understand and evaluate the company's culture, (relate to sources of data to justify the business need) Acknowledge bias, and provide initial training Set out general objectives Conclude with a D&I statement which summarises this work INTRODUCTION 18 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech The guide Understanding bias and building consensus WHY BEGIN A D&I STRATEGY? DEFINE OPPORTUNITY FOR YOUR D&I STRATEGY At the start of your document, clearly state why you believe there is a need for a D&I strategy at your company. Where did the idea come from? Are you revising a pre-existing policy? Is this plan reactive (in response to an event) or proactive (a pre-emptive step to ensure your team starts off on a strong foot)? Or is this plan based on a data collection exercise, either of the diversity in the company, or the pay gap between groups? D&I strategies are multilevel action plans that have the capability to deliver a host of benefits across departments, business priorities and objectives. However, a list of every potential positive outcome will not create a compelling opportunity on its own. Use this step to outline specific 'unmet needs' or deficiencies within your business that your D&I plan will address and support your firm in achieving. Identify limitations or opportunities across all departments (for small companies, within your current team) that could benefit from a D&I strategy. For example, does HR need help with increased employee engagement? Does the product team need a greater understanding of the underlying users of the product? Does the customer success department need to reach more diverse groups of customers? From this list, select the key priorities which you can use to demonstrate potential value and benefits. These priorities will serve as the foundation for your D&I strategy. To ensure your D&I strategy stays relevant as an ongoing initiative, once the strategy is developed, make sure it is reviewed on a regular basis (i.e via employee surveys and/or as an agenda item at regular board meetings). 19 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech GETTING STAKEHOLDERS ON BOARD Why do stakeholders need to be onboard? Getting a 'yes' from those controlling the company budgets isn't the only reason to invest time in winning over your stakeholders. These stakeholders also have a significant role to play in safeguarding against common project risks, such as overrun on time or budget, low user adoption, or resistance from senior representatives in the firm. Given the potential impact a D&I strategy can have on your business and its employees, your leaders are also those who can champion the change from the top, down. This means motivating, exciting and engaging your team to ensure you get the most important outcome of all: colleagues championing your new D&I strategy. Map out the stakeholders For larger companies (this step is less relevant to small companies with fewer than 30 people), identify and map out who the stakeholders are. This covers anyone with a stake in the project from sign-off and budgetary approval to roll out, implementation, and adoption. Consider their level of interest in the D&I strategy and their power to influence it. This will help you define where to focus efforts during your planning and deployment process. For mid- to large-sized companies, you might want to consider your clients or customers, senior managers, talent managers, department managers, and the finance team. For small companies, identify how each team member can contribute their expertise to your strategy. Securing acceptance from stakeholders (for example investors, board members, employees) can be one of the most significant challenges for anyone looking to roll out a new company-wide strategy in the workplace. D&I often calls for better communication, education and cultural adjustment and careful change management: it's not a quick discussion followed by pressing the 'on' switch for take-off. Your stakeholders at every level need to commit to ensure its efficacy. When it comes to pitching a new (or improved) diversity and inclusion strategy, you also face the added difficulty of appealing for significant investment whether financially or in terms of time and resource for often hard-to-measure (yet no less real) returns. 20 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech The guide Understanding bias and building consensus GETTING INTERNAL SUPPORT Understanding your company's culture For larger companies, you will also need to ensure that you obtain internal support from your organisation, and that your document reflects the company's current culture. Identify a core team (consisting of at least one representative from each department) to discuss the company's culture. Allow people across the organisation to contribute (either anonymously or not) to the D&I strategy. The individuals involved should, if possible, represent as wide a group as possible. In large companies, you could have one departmental representative as a Lead Diversity Representative (LDR) for each team. The LDR should ensure that they inform their team of the discussion and listen to any concerns team members may have. This will ensure a channel of communication between you and relevant departments. To better understand the organisation's culture, ask the following questions: 1. What does it mean to work at your firm? And, in your department? 2. How would you describe the company's culture? 3. What is and isn't working for you? 4. Do you feel you can bring your whole self to work? If not, what would make you more comfortable at work? This is a crucial step. Get a clear understanding of where your company is now and take the time to explore successes and concerns across departments. For example, a possible concern might be that your company is homogeneous: ask yourself how missing perspectives will affect the insight you gather. Discussions will highlight any further areas you will need to address and will be of invaluable use when you plan your strategy. Additionally, discussions will help you to benchmark your strategy. You want to track the progress of your strategy going forward. To do so, evaluate and measure current performance against the objectives of your D&I strategy. This will give you a starting point to ensure that you can track progress each step of the way. 21 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech UNDERSTANDING BIAS Cognitive biases affect decision-making at all levels and unfortunately these biases may go unnoticed and unidentified. Bias training programs are designed to help organisations tackle the issue. But, before rolling out a bias training programme firm-wide, ensure that you yourself learn about bias and how to identify different examples. To do so, take the following steps: a. Read Outsmart Your Own Biases from the Harvard Business Review2 b. Watch Facebook and Google Ventures' videos on bias as an overview3 a. Take the Harvard Implicit Association Test to understand how bias is deeply ingrained4 Failing to engage employees as participants in debiasing organisational processes can limit the impact of those efforts.5 Joelle Emerson Founder and CEO of Paradigm 1. Learn 2. Identify 2 Soll, J et al. Outsmart your own biases, Harvard Business Review (May 2015), accessed on October 01, 2018. 3 Facebook, Managing Bias, https://managingbias.fb.com/; 4 Harvard, Implicit Association Test, https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/takeatest.html 5 Emerson, J. Don't Give Up on Unconscious Bias Training Make It Better. HBR: April 28th, 2017, online. 22 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech The guide Understanding bias and building consensus Training programmes Social justice or bias training can help tech entrepreneurs and employees to understand how their background and experiences help enrich the position they are in and how it impacts those they interact with. It is important to tackle bias at an organisational level. However, not all training programmes are created equal. Luckily, there is a growing body of research to help us identify effective bias training programmes and how to motivate employees to adopt behaviours which mitigate bias. At this stage, be mindful that teams may not have the insight or information with which to commit to ambitious or effective targets before training. In these scenarios, objectives may need to be revisited and revised after training. Before training 1.Identify priorities and objectives Your organisation must be serious about what they want to change. Training is effective when designed intentionally to achieve discrete results.6 Ask each departmental Lead Diversity Rep. to write a short list of simple, action-specific targets for their team. If you work at a small company, write one list on behalf of your team. Bring and discuss these targets at the training programme. Make sure that each target may be acted upon after your training. Examples of team targets could include: a. Have a team that reflects the society it makes products for. b. Think more broadly about team dynamics to ensure everyone feels comfortable and supported. c. Reduce bias during hiring. 2. Encourage training participation on a volunteer basis Firms that made bias training mandatory discovered that this enforced approach activated and stimulated bias creating a less open-minded work environment.7 3. Concentrate on positive messaging Some managers rely on negative messaging to encourage employees to sign up for training. For example, focusing on 'negative incentives do not generate converts (for example, "discriminate, and the company will pay the price")'.8 Instead, share a positive message that bias training helps to build an inclusive workplace. Build on that idea by preceding or following training courses with a team meal to encourage discussion about learnings. 4. Don't single out certain groups of employees for training (i.e. managers) Research has found that when selected groups of employees underwent special training, they disliked the implication of needing more work to manage bias and opposed the training.9 6 Emerson, J. Don't Give Up on Unconscious Bias Training Make It Better. HBR: April 28th, 2017, online. 7 Dobbin, F and Kalev, A. Why Diversity Programs Fail. 2016, HBR, online. 8 Ibid. 9 Ibid. 23 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 10 Dobbin, F and Kalev, A. Why Diversity Programs Fail. 2016, HBR, online. 11 Ibid. Three principles that encourage effective training: 1. Balance the conversation between limiting defensiveness and communicating the value of bias and social justice training "It is important to reduce defensiveness, some training programmes go too far and give the impression that, "we all do this, so it's okay." [This normalises bias] and people's actions are more likely to be influenced by stereotypes. It's important that training makes clear the importance of managing bias and offer strategies to do so".10 2. Structure the content of the workshop around workplace situations A bias training session should focus on specific situations the employees would find in everyday business practice (i.e. hiring and team dynamics). When information is presented in a way that is linked to an employee's current work environment, they are more likely to remember and act on it.11 3. Have action-led goals Make sure when raising awareness about bias to educate your team on the underlying causes and systems of inequality too. Training should provide employees with both an understanding of the issues and action-orientated plans. Encourage each employee who takes part in a workshop to bring a copy of their team's objectives, as well as individual goals, along to the session. Evaluate feedback Following workshop participation, seek feedback from participants by using a short, structured interview to identify positive and negative outcomes. Not only will this contribute to benchmarking your D&I strategy, it will also reinforce the fact that your strategy is about having conversations at all levels in the company. Evaluate the feedback against the initial priorities in your D&I document. Does the feedback support the priorities you previously listed? Does the feedback suggest new priorities to consider? Update your list of priorities accordingly. Tugce Bulut Co-founder and CEO of Streetbees I do see progress towards diversity and inclusion. I recognise that not every company is as lucky to have diversity hard-wired into it as we are. At a start-up, it can be hard to get the talent you want. It can be even harder to find talent while recruiting, or trying to find female coders or data scientists. But if you give in to that mindset and forget about diversity, that's how problems start - much better that you look to build an inclusive culture from day one. 24 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech The guide Understanding bias and building consensus Objectives, or purposes, normally fall into one of two categories: generic, or specific. At this stage, focus on the generic (high-level) objectives - a few examples are shown below. We recommend preparing specific aims with the help of the wider company during Part Two: Planning a D&I strategy. DEFINE D&I STRATEGY OBJECTIVES (GENERAL) Generic Objectives James Field Co-founder and CEO of LabGenius At LabGenius, we have a diverse team of talent: 31% of our team is female and 50% is international. As a startup (22 employees), we make it clear that we endorse diversity and inclusion by putting our D&I statement on our website, and also at the top of every job description. Our mission D&I statement is: Diversity makes for innovative teams. LabGenius is an equal opportunity employer and we do not discriminate based on gender, race, colour, religion or belief, national origin, age, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, or any other protected class. Develop internal communication Partner with customers to provide solutions Improve cross- departmental collaboration 25 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech WRITE YOUR D&I STATEMENT If you are a small company, sit down with your fellow founders to determine core values (the principles which define the ethos of your company), key objectives and consider a short D&I statement. For larger companies, once you have stated the need for your strategy, determined your stakeholders, and set generic objectives, write a D&I statement. Your D&I statement acts as your reference point throughout the planning and implementation of your D&I strategy. In the case of small companies, it will hopefully put you in good stead for developing a D&I strategy when you begin to scale at a fast rate! Your D&I statement should clearly set out the main aspects of your document: What does the discussion on D&I mean to your firm's culture Core values What problems will your D&I strategy address What are the expected outcomes Projected timeline (to be developed during the next section Part Two: Planning your D&I strategy) PART TWO Planning your D&I strategy In this section, we'll guide you in working out the specific needs and opportunities in your business for a D&I strategy. All Shades Covered is a beauty retailer for black women who have been under-served. Given this, it is at our core to be diverse and inclusive in the way we market, hire and raise funds. It would be impossible to build my business without this kind of proactive strategy and a diverse team who represent my consumers. Tommy Williams Co-founder and CEO of All Shades Covered TOP TIPS Map communities in your company with different requirements to determine key needs and appropriate actions. Open a communication (feedback) channel which people at the companycan use to input comments and suggestions. Resources: allocate budget, people and time as part of the strategy. Seek approval for these resource allocations upfront. 26 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech 27 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech INTRODUCTION REVIEW EXISTING INITIATIVES The first step is for mid- to large-size companies to define the specific needs and opportunities in your company requires you to review existing D&I strategies already in use. This review period will help you: 1. Integrate your plans with existing strategies 2. Highlight opportunities for operational efficiencies 3. Improve consistency of messaging 4. Develop a partnership, and potentially engage an important ally, with the manager responsible for the existing D&I initiative. After you review existing strategies, refer to the executive summary of Part One: Understanding bias and building consensus. Do your findings still support the D&I statement? The planning phase can be structured as follows: Review Existing Initiatives (for mid- to large-size companies) Determine Key Needs Resources: Allocating Budget, People and Time Maintain Ownership Accounting for Risk: Don't Be Afraid to Fail! STRUCTURE With consensus for your D&I strategy approved and your D&I statement defined, it's on to the planning phase. The process of planning a new or improved D&I strategy requires you to identify who will use your strategy and what their requirements are. This section will help you develop an appropriate action plan to meet the needs of your employees, customers and any other stakeholders. The planning phase will also require you to specify internal structures and resources needed to deliver your strategy successfully and to consider possible risk factors associated with the strategy. The guide Planning your D&I strategy 1 2 3 4 5 28 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech The guide Planning your D&I strategy An effective D&I strategy is focused on people. A strategy that is representative of the culture it seeks to assist will see higher levels of adoption and engagement these are the best indicators of success. Lou Gerstner and IBM's diversity turnaround is an industry-leading example of an effective D&I strategy1 which focused on people (customers and employees, alike). To establish key needs, consider the following steps: OUTPUT Outline key objective and action-specific strategies DETERMINE KEY NEEDS Map communities in your company 1 Determine community needs, and assign D&I Task Forces 2 Open a channel of communication 3 Define specific objectives and purpose (define common needs) 4 Determine key objectives 6 Review and compare: How does the mission statement compare with community needs? 5 7 John Down Founding member of Series Q (the UK's first LGBT+ network for entrepreneurs) and COO/CFO of The Dots) and COO/CFO of The Dots Series Q is an inclusive space where people can listen to LGBTQ+ speakers, network with like-minded individuals, and discuss LGBTQ+ specific issues faced by entrepreneurs. 1 Thomas, David A. Diversity As Strategy. Harvard Business Review, (September 2004), accessed on October 01, 2018. 29 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech Map Communities in Your Company It's easy to group employees by department, seniority or job title, but a D&I strategy looks to expand a company's cultural awareness and support underrepresented groups. With the approval of your co-founders or leadership team, consider traditional categories and think outside the box to identify a balance of diverse communities at the organisation. Here are four examples of workplace communities, and their potential needs which would benefit from D&I initiatives: Define Diversity and Inclusion Task Forces to Help Define Community Needs To determine community needs and requirements, set up Diversity and Inclusion Task Forces. How many task forces you establish depends on the size and variety of communities at your firm. A task force's responsibility is to determine the needs of their communities (by means of surveys and focus groups) and to share their findings with you and other task force leaders. Ultimately, the goal is to identify key concerns and the best method of implementing a strategy which appeals to the broadest set of employees. Mid-size company (30-100 people): You probably only need one task force comprising one or more member from each community. Large-size company (100+ people): You may choose to have one task force per community. Example one Community: Parents Definition: Employees who balance work life with raising a family. Examples of requirements: Parental Leave Policy, flexible work agendas, childcare support. Example two Community: HR Team Definition: Employees who work together due to their shared profession in Human Resources Examples of requirements: Tools to mitigate bias before and during recruitment. Example three Community: Physically Disabled Workers (PDW) Definition: Employees who have physical, mobility or dexterity limitations. Examples of requirements: Improved access to building facilities, flexible workplace arrangements. Example four Community: Underrepresented Employees Definition: A group of minority individuals Examples of requirements: Greater awareness of cultural differences, Equal Opportunity Policy COMMUNITIES IN YOUR COMPANY 30 | Diversity & Inclusion in Tech The guide Planning your D&I strategy DEVISING CUSTOMISED STRATEGIES FOR YOUR COMPANY OPEN A COMMUNICATION CHANNEL Together with the feedback from Task Force groups, use this input to enhance your list of community needs. Your firm is made up of individuals. Each employee will have unique concerns and needs. Your D&I s
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