Inclusion in the
​Tech Industry

Temple University, April 2018

Inclusion in the
Tech Industry

Temple University, April 2018

Follow along on your device at:

What are we talking about today?

Do you remember this video?

Or what about this one?

Why did that happen?


How could it happen?


Diversity refers to difference. As such, diversity is a property of groups, not individuals. Diversity refers to cultivating talent... An individual cannot be diverse, but groups of individuals (e.g., the scientific research workforce) can possess diversity.

- Kenneth Gibbs, Jr.



Inclusion is a call to action within the workforce that means actively involving every employee’s ideas, knowledge, perspectives, approaches, and styles to maximize business success.

- Shirley Engelmeier

Why should companies strive

for diversity/inclusion?

Diversity of experiences and viewpoints helps companies better navigate the rough times


More viewpoints leads to more ideas, increasing organizations' creativity and bettering their solutions


Companies without diverse staff often make embarrassing mistakes



Did your labels cover this photo?

Or this one?

Or this one?

Label Me... At Your Peril!

I'm a competitive, advanced tennis player


I lived for years in Zürich, Switzerland and speak German


I have been to events at the White House on three separate occasions


I have a husband


Stereotypes are characteristics ascribed to groups of people involving gender, race, national origin and other factors. These characteristics tend to be oversimplifications of the groups involved, however.

- Nadra Kareem-Nittle


The Tech Industry's Inclusion Problem

Male/Female Imbalance (Did you know that the first "computers" were all women?) [*]

Underrepresented ethnicities [*]



The Tech Industry's Inclusion Problem

Male/Female Imbalance (Did you know that the first "computers" were all women?) [*]

Underrepresented ethnicities [*]



Issues in Hiring

Most jobs are found through networking,
not job listings


Most recruiters & HR depts look to the same places. (No imagination, lowest perceived risk/reward ratio)


Looking only for "Culture Fit"


Stereotyping of candidates

Issues in Retention

Not being in the "In" Crowd that hangs out after work.


Company culture based on beer & pizza


Management valuing the opinions and promoting only certain types of employees




Microaggressions are intentional or unintentional slights - based on cultural/gender/age stereotypes - that serve to invalidate the group identity of target persons, demean them on a personal or group level, or otherwise communicate that they are lesser human beings.

- Derald Wing Sue

Diversity at Conferences

Mirrors the issues seen in hiring and retention


You might be the only one of your "type" in the room


The movement to ensure diversity of panelists and speakers

How Can You Help?

How Can You Help?

Volunteer with programs that promote tech skills/knowledge among girls, women, and underrepresented minority groups


If you see non-inclusive actions/practices happening at school or on the job, speak up about it to a dean, a manager,
or human resources

How Can You Help?

Actively recruit diverse candidates (from your networks, schools you've attended, conferences) to apply for jobs where you work.


Agree to be a panelist at a conference only if the diversity level of both the panel and conference meet your minimum requirements.

Who Am I?

  • Dennis Slade Jr.
  • 25+ years experience in web & desktop applications, software support, and training
  • 15+ years experience with PHP/MySQL  and similar technologies
  • 30+ years providing tech support to Mom

Thanks for listening!

Dennis Slade Jr.
• LinkedIn:
• Twitter: @DennisSladeJr


This presentation on



Inclusion in the Tech Industry (Temple U)

By Dennis Slade Jr.

Inclusion in the Tech Industry (Temple U)

What is Inclusion? What is diversity? What is the state of inclusive hiring in the tech industry, and where are things headed?

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