Monday, Jun 25 2018

Silicon Valley’s Bro Culture – Can It Be Fixed?

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Bro Culture


The tech industry has struggled when it comes to gender diversity. Many companies claim it is an objective, but don’t subsequently adjust their cultures to make it more welcoming to women.


Evidence has suggested that the gender pay gap in tech is closing, representing a solid first step toward equality. But eliminating what has become known as “bro culture” is also a vital part of the equation, and many wonder if it can ever be corrected.


The Beginning of Bro Culture

During the earliest stages of what can be viewed as the current technology landscape, many of the companies were comprised largely (if not entirely) by men. This resulted in a culture that met their needs and preferences, and it became ingrained over the years.


However, as time moved forward, the tech industry didn’t remain the territory of men. Women also became interested in computing, programming, and other areas of the sector, leading them to pursue degrees and seek out opportunities in IT. But the culture wasn’t always welcoming, even if a diverse workforce can help promote innovation and creative thinking.



Repairing Bro Culture

Any change in a company’s culture has to come from the top down. Leaders need to embrace not just the concept of diversity, but take active steps to create environments that feel welcoming and inclusive to all skilled professionals, regardless of gender.


Additionally, they need to communicate the benefits of diversity to everyone in the company, showcasing how people of varied background can bring in new perspectives, helping the business innovate and meet the needs of their customer base.


To help promote these goals, they also need to set clearly defined standards regarding employee behavior. This can include policies that guide expectations as well as repercussions for creating an environment that isn’t supportive of all members of the workforce.


In some cases, training may be required to help demonstrate which actions may be off-putting to other groups, including women, and how to correct any behaviors to craft an inclusive culture. Reporting mechanisms may also be necessary, giving workers a platform to discuss any problems they encounter so solutions can be identified quickly.


Further, hiring practices may need to be examined. Bias, whether unconscious or conscious, may be harming female candidates during the hiring process, causing them to be eliminated from consideration solely based on their gender. While gender discrimination is illegal, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t occur, and taking a hard look at a company’s hiring track record can help determine whether biases may have influenced decisions.


Overhauling an organization’s culture takes a significant amount of effort. However, if a bro culture persists, companies will struggle to find the high-quality workers they need to succeed, particularly with unemployment remaining low and skill gaps existing throughout the tech industry.


If you are interested in learning more, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our knowledgeable staff members today and see how our expertise can benefit you.