October 31, 2017

Diversity & inclusion roundup: Sharing big ideas to champion diversity

Recently investor Maynard Webb visited one of his portfolio companies and couldn’t help noticing that every new hire was white, young and male. He writes in Forbes, “I have to admit, there was a part of me that felt as if I had no business telling the company that they had to focus on diversity. After all, I am also white and male. But over the past seven years at WIN, and my 40-year career, we’ve come to see how crucial it is to be deliberate about making your company diverse — and doing it early is much, much easier.” He asked Talent Sonar’s CEO, Laura Mather, for her best advice on attracting and selecting talent from diverse backgrounds. You can read his full piece on Forbes.

In other Talent Sonar news, speaker Laura Mather and Co-chair Elaine Orler, will be in attendance at this year’s Recruiting Trends and Talent Tech, November 28-30, 2017 in Palm Beach County Convention Center, Florida. Will you be there? We’d be happy to book an assessment, today!

Read on for a roundup of headlines that got our attention this week, resources you can take back to your team, and recent findings in organizational psychology. Thanks and happy hiring!

In the news

Uber faces gender and race discrimination lawsuit

Uber has faced widely publicized allegations of sexual harassment and HR cover-ups, lawsuits, and board member resignations in 2017. Now add a lawsuit by three Latina engineers who allege Uber’s compensation and promotion practices discriminate against women and people of color. Will Uber ever repair it’s broken corporate culture? The Holder recommendations were accepted by the board in their entirety earlier this year, but it’s not clear what, if any, changes have been made.

VC firm shakes things up with data-driven selection strategy

Venture capital firm Social Capital has announced it no longer uses the traditional pitch as the means for deciding what ventures to fund. (Research shows that traditional pitches made by attractive men are 60% more likely to get funded than pitches from women. And in an MIT experiment, when identical business-plans were presented by either male or female voices, respondents chose the plans presented by males 68% of the time). Instead, Social Capital will use an identity-blind, data-driven approach. In a private beta that evaluated 3,000 companies, the company chose several dozen companies to fund in 12 countries. Of the funded companies chosen, 42% of CEOs are female and majority non-white.

Resources & Webinars

WebinarHow to build a data-driven recruiting process
November 15, 2017
Hosted by Teamable and Audrey Blanche, Head of D&I at Atlassian

Online Resource: 
Family Leave Workshop
Get the support, resources, and tools needed to change your company’s paid family leave policy. Free 4-session workshop from the experts at PL+US.

What we’re reading

Study finds bais, not behavior, holding women back at work

There are a lot of theories about why women continue to be underrepresented in executive positions, have lower salaries and are promoted less often than men. One theory is that women simply behave differently than men at work: maybe they put in less facetime with managers, aren’t as proactive as men in talking to senior leaders, or are slower to respond to emails. A small, but fascinating, study tested whether women and men really behave differently at work using sociometric badges that record real-life communication patterns using sensors. The study found no measureable differences. Women and men had the same number of contacts, same amount of facetime, same work patterns in-person and online. Yet, despite similar behaviors and performance review scores, women at this company still aren’t advancing at the same rate as men.

Hire the team you need, not the individual

Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Professor of Management, Sydney Finkelstein, argues that companies should try hiring entire teams rather than individuals. There is evidence that a team-based hiring approach may reduce bias, increase new hires’ satisfaction via the “cohort effect,” and even increase women’s competitiveness (research shows women tend to avoid being seen as competitive as individuals, but are happy to compete as a team).  At the very least, focus on all the skills you need on your team before interviewing candidates.