The WIT Network

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Blogs

Diversity, equity and inclusion is top of mind for most businesses. Whether leaders are looking to hire with diversity in mind, ensure that there is a culture of inclusion and offering equity across the organization for pay, promotions and opportunities, The WIT Network welcomes the opportunity to share stories from our members as well as experts in the realm of DEI.

Draw in diversity by changing the interview process and coding test – here‘s how

The biggest impediment to attracting and hiring female software engineers (and other diverse candidates) is the interview process and coding test. Change this process, and you‘ll start to change the industry.

The traditional engineering code test and interview process is extremely stressful, unnecessarily complex, fraught with implicit bias, and favors people who are good at testing and talking. We offer ways to make the process better based on women‘s experiences inside the industry.


Building an LGBTQ+ inclusive workplace
(or 10 ways to fly the Pride flag year-round)

From Alan Turing to Megan Smith, former chief technology officer of the United States, and beyond, LGBTQ+ technologists have made vast strides in helping drive the technology industry forward. A few years ago, data suggested that, in major tech hubs such as San Francisco and Seattle, the LGBTQI+ population is 2-3 times that of the national average. Research shows that diverse leadership makes companies more innovative (critical in tech) and can deliver higher revenues.

Academic estimates have found that 5.1% of U.S. women identify as LGBTQ+ as do 3.9% of U.S. men. Their representation in corporate America, however, is much lower than these levels.[i] Despite visible corporate support (such as sponsoring Pride events), today‘s workplaces are largely falling short of full inclusion. According to McKinsey‘s Women in the Workplace research, LGBTQ+ women are more underrepresented than women generally in America‘s largest corporations. Just four openly LGBTQ+ CEOs head these corporations, only one of whom is female and none of whom is trans.[ii]


Death by 1000 papercuts: How to recognize microaggressions and what we can do about them

A few of the speakers at The WIT Network International Women's Day Conference brought up microaggression as a critical challenge we are still working to overcome in workplaces. We seem, in general, to be getting better with diminishing macro-aggressions—the loud, outward actions of inequity. Likely because they are easier to recognize and name. However, microaggressions are still affecting corporate cultures and our ability to build truly diverse, equitable teams where individuals feel included: that they belong.

What are microaggressions?

According to Dr. Derald Wing Sue, microaggressions are the everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs, or insults, whether intentional or unintentional, which communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to target persons based solely upon their marginalized group membership. (Microaggressions in Everyday Life: Race, Gender, and Sexual Orientation, 2010).


Mental health impact on your DEI strategy

Women working in male-dominated industries, such as technology, often have similar stories of inappropriate comments made, times when they felt they had donned a cloak of invisibility, and situations that left them questioning their abilities, self-worth, and value to their company. These feelings coalesce into a sense of not belonging.

When someone feels like they don't belong, it can trigger fight-flight-freeze (FFF) mechanisms that cause stress, inhibiting active participation or contribution. Additionally, this FFF response can cause depression, anxiety, and other mental health concerns, especially if the instigating incident occurs repeatedly. "Stress and anxiety are already high in STEM fields, particularly in things such as med school, without the added pressure of being a "minority" in one of these fields."[i]


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