As a tech company, how does Enstoa engineer in innovation and dynamic thinking? We strive to create teams made up of individuals that don’t think the same. We like our teams to consist of individuals with different backgrounds, ideals, anxieties, experiences, and personalities. We fear group-think and have a core belief that heterogeneous teams always outperform homogeneous teams.
Workforce diversity isn’t easy to achieve. We tried to be at gender parity by 50 people but fell short. We’ve refocused our efforts, refined our recruiting pipeline metrics, and are on target to hit our revised goal of 50/50 by 100.
We have our work cut out for us. Taking the U.S.A. as an example, about 3.6 million people are employed in computer occupations (2011 data) and approximately 26% are female. On the surface, this percentage makes recruiting a real challenge. Looking at it another way, there are just under 1 million females in Enstoa’s field. We’ll have no issues reaching our goal so long as we stay focused.
We’re after diversity of thought and won’t limit our workforce strategy to the gender metric. That said, it is the best place to start. Once successful, we’ll tweak our processes and recruiting metrics to tackle the other important diversity categories and dilute majorities by function, seniority, and location.
I’m going to use a real world example to demonstrate how a small tech team without a dominate majority will generate better outcomes. Faced with a problem, individuals draw upon experiences tucked away in the conscious and unconscious parts of the brain. This stored knowledge leads to decisions and actions. If the aggregate experience pool across team members is narrow, the range of possible decisions will also be narrow. If combined conscious and unconscious experiences are broad, the range of decision options is also broad.
For the most part, men and women have had different experiences that lead to alternate views on tech solutions, client relationships, business strategy and so forth. At Enstoa, we’re after a wide set of combined experiences at team, function and company levels.
It is important for me to clarify that Enstoa’s diversity strategy isn’t about creating fairness or opportunities for disadvantaged social groups. That doesn’t mean I don’t feel deep sadness about centuries of inequality. I do. But in the world of Enstoa, our diversity objective is about enhancing innovation, decision making and team chemistry. It is a critical and top business strategy baked into our business plan since 2007. Come hell or high water, we’ll meet our 50/50 goal this time around by 100 people.