Amazon, LinkedIn, Google, Facebook, Black Enterprise, CES, technology to address workforce diversity, plus more

Can technology, including AI/machine learning, help address workforce diversity issues? Companies like SheWorks!, tEQuitable, Atipica, Textio and Pluto are just some of the startups trying to do this, but they have deliberately made this part of their mission. There are also companies like LinkedIn which announced this week it is using AI to recruit more diverse candidates. However, when leveraging technology, some companies may not realize that they may face bias issues they had not predicted, as we saw this week with Amazon. The recruitment engine the company used showed bias against women. More than 50% of HR managers in the U.S. saidartificial intelligence, or AI, would be a regular part of their work within the next five years, according to a 2017 survey by talent software firm CareerBuilder,” so this is something to continue to monitor. Ultimately I think what this also shows is that you need diversity on the management and development side to create viable solutions.

Google and Facebook announced that they are funding a machine learning course in Africa. This is just one example of how companies are trying to address these challenges but there is a lot of work to be done as diversity in tech continues to be a significant issue

It was great to see that CES listened to the concerns last year on the lack of diversity as Lisa Su, chief executive of AMD and Ginni Rometti, IBM’s CEO, were named as keynote speakers. Also, read this from  Black Enterprise titled “Black and Brown Tech Innovators and Enthusiasts Gather for Bigger, Better Techconnext conference.”

In other news, CNBC wrote about how Latino owned small businesses are “turbocharging growth,” I love this from the New York Times done to celebrate the International Day of the Girl and called #ThisIs18 and the Google Doodle honors Roberto Clemente

Finally, ICYMI here is one of my favorite ads this year, from JetBlue, celebrating Puerto Rico.

Photo by Alex Knight on Unsplash

Arlan Hamilton, Elizabeth Gore, Melinda Gates, Carla Harris, Freada Kapor Klein and much more

This week’s blog post has a strong focus on women as you can see from the headline. I did not realize that until I was close to finalizing it.  So this morning one of the first tweets I saw, fortunately, was Arlan Hamilton on the cover of FastCompany. Here is the story here.  This photo Arlan shared was not quite my reaction but close to it. Read here on why Stephanie Mehta selected Arlan. Listen to her interview with Tanzina Vega on The Takeaway. I recommend you follow Arlan to see how, via Backstage Capital, she is disrupting the VC industry. 

Then later today I read this by Elizabeth Gore in Inc. She is absolutely right. I am grateful that I get to work with entrepreneurs and disruptors like Genius Plaza founder Ana Roca Castro and SheWorks! founder Silvina Moschini and other entrepreneurs who are making an impact and are a part of the #NewMajority.

Other interesting reads this week include “Dell, other tech giants team up to improve diversity in training pipeline,” “Beauty Is More Diverse Than Ever. But Is It Diverse Enough?,” “Fifty years of economic history proves that inclusive workplaces make us all richer,” “Female Role Models Empower Young Girls to Pursue STEM Careers in Latest Ad Council Campaign,” and this “Few minorities, only 45 Latinos, in U.S. House’s top staff jobs, report says.” Here is this report from Nielsen titled “From Consumers to Creators: The Digital Lives of Black Consumers.”  

I also recommend reading this from Melinda Gates on closing the gender tech gap and listen to Carla Harris’ podcast with Freada Kapor Klein on the “Leaky Tech Pipeline.”

ICYMI this is from the New York Times titled “As TV Seeks Diverse Writing Ranks, Rising Demand Meets Short Supply.”

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Nonprofit diversity, Harvard, Vogue, Magazine Covers, Politics, Startups and the PR industry in the #MeToo era

Every day I save articles to include in the weekly blog post, and also do some searches to find some of the best coverage about diversity. That is why I appreciate it when some of you share articles I may have missed or catch a mistake and flag it for me. Thank you Xochitl Yañez for sharing this one focused on diversity in nonprofits, a very interesting read.

I also follow a number of individuals that share great content, including pieces they have written. Here is this from Monica Castillo focused on language, Ana Valdez shared this written by Miriam Rivera titled “How to be an ally in a diverse community,” One area that I focus on is startups, and follow leaders like Arlan Hamilton and Mandela SH Dixon and try to include articles like this piece on “105 black and latino founders who have raised $1mm+ in VC funding…”

One of the topics I talk about almost every week is that representation matters, which is why we we should celebrate that  “For the First Time, Black Women Will Run Four Schools at Harvard University,” and that, as the CNBC headline states,Women are shattering records in the 2018 primaries with more than a dozen states still to go.”Another story on the politics side, in Michigan, the Democrats have an all-female statewide ticket.  On the entertainment side, the fact that black women are on a number of magazine covers this month is also something to celebrate. Also, if you missed this from Vogue about advice for your 20 year old self based on Beyonce’s cover story, it is a great read.

We do have a long way to go, which is why Tuesday was Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, read more here. This New York Times piece “When a Female C.E.O. Leaves, the Glass Ceiling is Restored” has great insights and data in general about women in the C suite.  

Finally, ICYMI, here is a must read post by Jane Randel, co-founder of Karp Randel, focused on #MeToo and the PR industry.

Thank you for reading and following. Please share any articles you think are important to include!

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PRWeek 40 Under 40, Board Diversity, Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, Beth Ford, LeBron James & More

Every industry has “power” or “leadership” lists, conferences and events that are important validators, provide access and awareness and can be important both for companies and for individuals. Yes these are competitive. Yes they are time consuming. Yes many require an investment in time and many times funding.  Why are they important? You see those that are being recognized are getting access and potentially more opportunities. Representation matters. That is why every time we see a list, a panel or industry awards that lacks diversity we speak up. I’ve seen several lists recently that make me wonder what the barriers for having more diversity are – i.e. Adweek Power List. The most recent one PRWeek 40 Under 40. Now if you look at this year’s list, it is diverse, and according to editorial director Steve Barrett, it is the most diverse. However, I do wonder why there seems to be only one Hispanic and one Asian American on the list, especially if you look at the demographics. Steve says he sees this as an anomaly if you look at previous years. I believe him as I’ve seen first-hand PRWeek’s commitment to diversity, in fact they produced one of the best videos on the topic for the PR industry, so my questions in this instance are more to those that nominate professionals in our industry. Also, don’t get me wrong – yes every individual on that list deserves to be there. I am also not advocating for quotas, that would be a mistake, but I go back to the numbers and demographics. If this generation is more diverse, and if as I’ve been told, we are seeing more entry level diverse individuals in PR, why is this not reflected in this list? Are there barriers we are not thinking of? Could this impact the pipeline of Hispanic or Asian American talent in leadership roles in PR? Food for thought.

Board diversity continues to be another issue, and something getting coverage today because of CBS, this from the New York Times: “Mr. Moonves, 68, has been the chairman of the CBS board since 2016, and the majority of its 14 members started their tenures after he was appointed chief executive in 2006. Three of the 14 are women, and the board’s average age is 73.” Here is this 2017 report from Deloitte on board diversity, a recommended read. Also some good organizations to follow and work with on board diversity include Women Corporate Directors, The Executive Leadership Council, The Latino Corporate Directors Association and Ascend.

Other stories I am following this week, this Annenberg study that highlights the ongoing diversity issues in Hollywood, Latino leaders asking for Paramount boycott, “Venture Capitals Diversity Disaster,”and this from Forbes, “‘I Want To Hire Someone Who Is Nothing Like Me’: An Entrepreneur’s Approach To Diversity.”

Congratulations to Beth Ford, named Land O’Lakes president and CEO and breaking new barriers. I love this, “Two Kenyan Entrepreneurs Create and Afrocentric Stock Photo Marketplace,”  and of course the new LeBron James school. Watch his CNN interview here. Also congratulations to Jorge Plasencia and Ilia Calderon being honored by HPRA this year!

ICYMI “Your Career, Your Terms” is a resource for women. Created by Perry Yeatman she has great interviews that, as the site describes “provides insights and inspiration to help ambitious women have the careers and lives of their dreams.” Don’t miss the second season of “Your Career, Your Terms: Pivot Points.”

Photo by Andre Hunter on Unsplash

NAHJ, NPR report, ClassPass, Blavity, LULAC, N.B.A., “Vida”, Adweek, Walmart, Goldman Sachs, Humanæ & more

Last week the National Association of Hispanic Journalists hosted its conference in Miami and I loved having the opportunity to visit with some amazing journalists – the featured photo is one group – thank you Olivia Tallet! While visiting with attendees I had numerous conversations about the lack of Latinos as sources and how many Latino journalists continue to work to change this. On that note, thank you Lulu Garcia-Navarro for sharing this and this from @NPR that validates my earlier posts of lack of representation of Latinos in media. Of course this is not just a problem at NPR, look at this from the Columbia Journalism Review. The list we started of Latino sources now has close to 100 entries, so if you need Latinos as sources, save this link! Plus thanks to the NPR piece I found this – which I love – #womenalsoknowstuff. You can register as a source here but note “To be listed on this site, you must have: (i) a Ph.D. in political science or be working towards a Ph.D. in political science or (ii) be employed in an academic political science department.” CJR is also compiling a list, here is a link to that list (save this link too) and the form to submit other names.

This week there are many reasons to celebrate including ClassPass raising $85 million in Series D, Blavity securing $6.5 million in funding, Mindy Marqués Gonzalez, executive editor of the Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald, was inducted into the NAHJ Hall of Fame, I posted about two Latina entrepreneurs being profiled in key media publications this past weekend, LULAC selected Sindy Benavides as its first woman CEO and a first generation immigrant and Domingo Garcia was elected president. I had missed this article on five women mobilizing the Latino community for the midterms which includes Sindy. Also loved this story from the New York Times: “N.B.A. Power Brokers Gather, With No Men Allowed.”

Of course there is still so much work to do, which as Cindy Gallop points out is evidenced in Adweek’s Power list which only features 12 women and no African Americans. 

Stories I am following this week include “This VR Founder Wants to Gamify Empathy to Reduce Racial Bias,” “How Latinos Are Shaping America’s Future,” “Possible key to black boys’ academic success: Hire black men as elementary school teachers,” Walmart investing $2 million in “diversity internships,” and Goldman Sachs has named Erika Irish Brown as its new chief diversity officer. 

Other stories include this from NBC News about Diane Guerrero’s new book titled “My Family Divided,” this from FastCompany about sunscreen startups catering to “long-ignored minorities,” and this New York Times apology for its Los Angeles travel story – another example of the importance of having diverse talent in newsrooms.  Actually after you read the New York Times piece that led to the apology, read this about the show “Vida,” written by two Latina writers.  For more stories on Latinos, here is this week’s Latinx Collective.

ICYMI, watch this great TED Talk: “The beauty of human skin every color.” Not new but something that I read about this week.

Corporate Diversity, ThePowerofAll, Latino Startups, TimesUp/Advertising and more

He who controls the budget controls the output –  Antonio Lucio, Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, HP. This is a must watch interview talking about his leadership in diversity.

This is probably one of the most talked about diversity stories this week:“It’s Up to White Men to Improve Tech’s Diversity, Says Uber Exec Bozoma Saint John.” I have to agree. Other recommended reading this week includes this from the Wall Street Journal titled “Small Changes Can Increase Corporate Diversity,” this one titled “Why Diverse Marketing Teams Possess A Competitive Edge,” and this one about Goldman Sachs Group plans to increase gender diversity.

Last week the Latino Donor Collaborative launched a month-long campaign to make sure that accurate facts about the contributions of Hispanics are being used – who would have thought that in 2018 this would be needed? Having worked at Univision for many years I know how difficult it can be to 1) get covered by general media (I actually had one reporter tell me he was not writing any more about Univision after one story because he had met his “quota” for the year);  2) that we are not seen as a niche, in many places we are actually the majority; and 3) that we are not monolithic, we are a diverse community. Yet there is still so much work to be done to change misconceptions and that is why this campaign is important. Congratulations to the Latino Donor Collaborative and Ana Valdez for a great initiative – a first, of its kind.

Staying on the Latino theme, here is this important read from Giovanni Rodriguez, “Stanford Study: Latino Startups Are Growing in Numbers But Are Unbanked.” This line caught my attention: “Latina business owners, many of whom perceive themselves as ‘not qualified’ to receive funding from financial institutions compared to men, even when holding firm size constant.” Something we need to address.

This week we also saw the release of the second annual 50 Most Powerful Latina women in corporate America from The Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA) and published in Fortune. Get to know these amazing leaders, tap them as speakers, for boards and as mentors!

Another announcement this week that I am following is how women advertising leaders are partnering with Time’s Up – read more here. Also, remember how CES missed the mark with the keynote speakers? Seems Cannes Lions took a different approach and I must say the program looks fantastic.

This week’s ICYMI, here is Vogue Magazine’s profile on the women rebuilding Puerto Rico.

Photo by Jonathan Daniels on Unsplash