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Year-End Review: Closing the Gender Gap

2020 is almost upon us. Which means we’re heading into an entirely new decade. A lot has happened in our world since women were granted the right to vote on August 19, 1920 (100 years ago!). We saw more women entering political office this year, and we have shed more light on gender inequality and developed plans to close the gender gap. Check out below our year-end review on everything regarding the gender gap and more.

As we near the end of 2019, why not take a moment to ask: how did your company do this when it came to moving the needle for gender equality?

2019 Minorities in Tech Report Card 

While we do see the needle nudging slightly toward the right direction when it comes to minorities in tech, there really hasn’t been enough change in this industry in 2019. 

Yes, statistics prove that more women and people of color are entering the tech industry. 

The James Damore incident (remember that ex-Google employee who wrote a manifesto on why women didn’t belong in tech?) feels like it was eons ago (and like something out of an episode of “Black Mirror”). 

But the sad truth is that aside for hiring a few minorities and firing a misogynist employee, the tech industry hasn’t done much more to close the gender and race gaps. 

This is glaringly obvious as seen in these diversity records visualized using the logos of the tech giants they represent.

Where does your organization land on this scale?

Wait — Isn’t Any Step in the Right Direction Still Progress?

Yes — and no. Any step in the right direction would be a great step. But as you can see from the graphic, change isn’t really happening in the tech industry.

Yes, there’s more recognition for creating more diversity in the workplace. But one of the major problems is that many people in the industry still don’t believe there is a problem with diversity. If you’re benefiting from inequality in the workplace, it’s not easy to recognize the problem.

In April of this year, CNBC reported that “46 percent of men in the workplace believe the gender pay gap is made up.”

What’s also glaringly obvious is that many women don’t feel they deserve to be promoted. They won’t apply for promotion unless they have 100 percent of the skills needed for the job; men will apply with only 60 percent of the qualifications.

These statistics are just as dismal as the visualized diversity records.

So what can be done to fix this?

Year-End Review Diversity Checklist

Before you can know where you’re going, you’ll need to take a moment to assess where your company is right now. In 2019, did you:

  • Promote more women to the top? 
  • Create equal opportunity at junior-and-mid levels for both female and male employees?
  • Offer training programs for minorities to encourage them to apply for upper management?
  • Create a culture where employees can celebrate minorities’ successes instead of simply assuming upward mobility was a ‘diversity hire?’
  • Implement a parent-friendly parental-leave policy?
  • Allow employees to work remotely
  • Consider bringing fresh perspectives from outside in via an independent consultant?

Looking to the Future in 2020

No matter how you did on the checklist, there’s always room for improvement! How can your organization set actionable diversity goals for the next year-end review?

  1. Consider hiring an organization that specializes in closing the diversity gap.
  2. Shake things up in your office by hiring contractors to offer a fresh voice and ideas.
  3. Offer employees flexibility by encouraging them to work from home to avoid discrimination against team members who need to leave early because of family commitments. 
  4. Create programs for incoming employees that empower everyone to apply for promotions at every level.
  5. Don’t assume employees won’t be able to handle promotions because of family commitments. 
  6. Ensure employees at junior-and-mid levels have the training they need to eventually apply for promotions at upper levels.
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