Diversity & Inclusion

A Means to Profitability

Johnny Ray Austin

https://johnnyray.me

NY Nasdaq CTO Summit 11/1/16

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Story Time

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Perpsective

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Perspective

  • Cognitive fingerprint
  • Dynamic - formed by life experience
    • Origin (hometown)
      • Quiet mid-west, busy east coast etc
    • Challenges
      • Non-traditional upbringing
        • Adoption
    • Beliefs
      • Family traditions etc
  • Relationships (more on this later)

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Inclusion

Bigger than gender and race

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Accessibility 

  • 18.7% (56.7 million) of US population have a disability
  • 3.3% (8.1 million) have a vision impairment
  • 3.1% (7.6 million) have a hearing impairment
  • Does your product or service exclude almost 19% of the US population?

Figures pulled from the 2012 Census Bureau

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Introverts vs Extroverts

  • Extroverts have lower baseline arousals
    • Require more exciting activities for mental satisfaction
  • Introverts become mentally exhausted
  • Extraversion bias society
    • "Put yourself out there"
    • Speak at a CTO Summit (I'm dying right now)
    • We tend to discourage introverted personalities

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Why?

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Snapchat

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How Can This Happen

  • Lack of Representation
    • Not necessarily racial/ethnic
    • Who was in the room?
  • Ignorance is not bliss - growth can be affected
    • How many users are never going to use snapchat now?
    • How many users are now "inactive"?
    • Bad press
    • Funding?

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The Data

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"Companies in the top quartile for gender diversity are 15% more likely to have financial returns above their respective national industry medians"

"Companies in the top quartile for racial diversity are 35% more likely to have financial returns above their respective national industry medians"

"In the US, for every 10% increase in racial and ethnic diversity on the senior-executive team, earnings before interest and taxes rises 0.8%"

Figures are from the McKinsey Diversity Report (2015)

McKinsey & Company

Diversity Matters

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Report from Scientific American (2014)

How Diversity Makes Us Smarter

"In a 2006 study of jury decision making, social psychologist Samuel Sommers of Tufts University found that racially diverse groups exchanged a wider range of information during deliberation about a sexual assault case than all-white groups did."

"Members of a homogeneous group rest somewhat assured that they will agree with one another; that they will understand one another's perspectives and beliefs; that they will be able to easily come to a consensus."

"...diversity appears to lead to higher-quality scientific research...Richard Freeman, an economics professor at Harvard University and director of the Science and Engineering Workforce Project at the National Bureau of Economic Research...found that papers written by diverse groups receive more citations and have higher impact factors than papers written by people from the same ethnic group."

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How?

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Not Cool

  • Quotas (​NO ONE wants these)
  • Explicit "culture" fit
  • The pipeline myth
    • Symptom of
      • Bad outreach/recruiting
      • Bad job descriptions
      • Biased networks (this is fine)
  • VP of Diversity*

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The Path Forward

  • Empathy
    • ​Exposure, relationships
  • Values fit (build culture organically)
  • Sincere effort
    • Recruit from diverse student bodies
    • Form relationships with groups that educate underrepresented groups of people
    • Address any lingering biases in your interview process
      • Blind submissions?

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Conclusion

  • Perspective drastically alters the problem-solving approaches
    • Don't leave money on the table
  • Studies tell us diverse groups are more productive, interpret data better and tend to perform better research
  • We know diverse groups generate more revenue
  • Consider more than gender and race
    • Personality types etc
    • Maximize your potential user-base by keeping accessibility in mind
  • Different perspectives help
    • Avoid silly controversies like Snapchat's "filter gate"

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Questions

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Diversity as a Means to Profitability

By Johnny Ray Austin

Diversity as a Means to Profitability

Slides for my talk at the 2016 NYC CTO Summit

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