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Tech shouldn’t be a boys’ club

We believe in diversity in the workplace because it is the type of future we want to build toward.
Take a look at how the biggest tech companies stack up with diversity:
Diversity in tech
Fine, but are we doing any better here?
A lot of ups and downs... and many lessons learned. 

Still, as of today, we are proud to announce that we have more women than men in a coding bootcamp, which is the first time ever worldwide for our network!

Tech shouldn't be a boys' club. We will keep pushing hard for more balance in this field!

That is why in April 2019, Le Wagon will be sponsoring coding classes for women in Shanghai, China. Members of our partner organizations can contact their representatives to sign up now!

Can we all embrace more diversity? Can you push for it in your organization?

Today we will offer some specific strategies that you can implement today in your workplace.

Why is diversity important?

The diversity of thoughts leads to better problem-solving. This statement is backed by decades of research. Collaborating with individuals of different genders, sexual orientations, ethnicities, and race leads to increased innovation and enhanced problem-solving. Hiring for diversity means onboarding different methods and strategies of thinking, as well as the increased capability to understand the pain points of all members of your target demographic. Le Wagon currently has approximately 24.3% of women in the community, we are looking forward to more women joining this amazing family and bringing us diversity!
More women in corporate leadership roles lead to increased revenue. In a survey published in a Peterson Institute for International Economics working paper of 22,000 firms globally, researchers found that gender diversity is indeed profitable for companies. The survey shows that firms that went from no female corporate leadership to a 30 percent female share were associated with a one per cent increase in net margin and these female corporate leaders performed relatively on par to their male colleagues. So rather than being better at their jobs, increased gender diversity at the corporate level led to things like increased skill diversity in upper management and less gender discrimination throughout the firm, which led to an improved ability to recruit top talent.
An entire marketplace lacks Tech-driven innovation. There is currently a marketplace of female-oriented products that desperately lacks Tech-driven innovation. These are products that by definition only women buy, like menstruation products, ovulation tracking tools/apps, as well as products typically bought by women. This could be a direct result of having a majority of Tech businesses run by male-dominated corporate leadership since people are often less likely to start a company in a sub-industry that has no relationship with them. However, this industry presents a wealth of profitable possibilities that Tech-driven businesses run by women, or ones with more women in corporate positions, might be more apt to pursue.

How can we embrace more diversity?

Below are 6 diversity ideas you can implement today to build the foundation and expectation of a diverse workplace.

1. Use inclusive language. 

This can be as simple as cracking down on use of the colloquial “hey guys” greeting when you address groups of people, not all of whom may be men. Or, you can refer to this awesome flowchart from Tech Lady Mafia.

What should you call that group of people?
2. Consider your office furnishings. 

At the University of Washington, Sapna Cheryan demonstrated that adding more feminine decor to computer science classrooms strengthened women’s associations of female gender with the possibility of computer science careers.

3. Mix up the images you use on your website. 

We have shown images of people on different platforms: event pictures, alumni stories, article photos, we’ve recently taken strides to freshen up these pictures with more diverse imagery.

4. Invite guest speakers and take part in events on this topic. 

Bringing in smart voices who can help you learn about diversity and inclusion is an easy way to fill knowledge gaps or help the team learn new perspectives. We host a series of events focusing on gender diversity like Women in Tech series: Celebrating Female Entrepreneurs and women can tech, which helped the community to learn more about this issue.
Women in tech events
5. Rethink your interview questions. 
What questions do you ask in interviews? How inclusive are the questions? Transforming your interview process to reduce bias and level the playing field has made a significant difference in the types of candidates you attract and hire. 

6. Break your filter bubble by exposing yourself to new voices. 

Find and follow new voices on different platforms. Specifically, choose thought leaders and profiles of people who are different than you. Subscribe to newsletters from diverse perspectives. Check out different articles for a list of ideas! 

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