A good hiring culture / pipeline is not on demand

Yesterday one of my roommates and I talked about the lack of diversity in tech / startups. 

In particular, we were thinking out loud about pipeline problems. In plain English that just translates as: how to get a set of good, qualified applicants who aren’t all white, male, and from upper economic tiers. 

This is a fairly regular conversation for me. It’s also something I’ve worked on in startups and corporate, at times directly via hiring and at times by supporting other people involved in or responsible for the process. 

Even the best founders / tech companies struggle with this. It’s common to hear people say that they are open to having a diverse hiring culture….and then find out that they don’t know how or aren’t willing to make the effort beyond posting jobs in a few obvious places. This is usually followed by wondering why they seem to get the same type of applicants. 

Other people have written extensively about why you might want to have a diverse hiring culture with respect to race, gender, sexual orientation, and other categories, so I won’t do that here…if you are looking for stats and research for the whys, here’s a good / fairly comprehensive resource created by Brittany Laughlin, GM of the Union Square Ventures Network and multiple times an entrepreneur. 

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