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Mar 04

3 things we learned from increasing gender diversity in the workplace

The benefits of gender diversity in the workplace are many. But it’s no secret the tech industry is still behind on the gender-diversity front. We’re incredibly proud that Choozle, as a medium-sized company with 54 people, has achieved gender diversity across the board, from leadership to engineering roles.

Overall, women make up 53.7 percent of the workforce at Choozle. They also make up 55.6 percent of leadership roles, 50 percent of development roles, and 60 percent of sales roles.

Here’s what we’ve learned along the way to becoming a gender-diverse tech company, including some thoughts from our CEO Andrew Fischer on the business benefits of gender diversity in the workplace and advice from four women at Choozle on growing your career in the tech industry.

Total employees

Leadership roles

3 benefits of gender diversity in the workplace

1. Gender-diverse teams bring more creativity during the ideation process. 

The trouble with homogeneous teams is that they really can’t innovate when everyone shares the same background and, consequently, lacks the perspective to solve for a particular problem. Nowadays, it takes more than just technical know-how to make a game-changing product. Innovation requires a diversity of thinking.

A study by Harvard Business Review even found that gender-diverse teams are quicker to get new technologies into the market.

2. Create gender diversity not just at the team-level but at the top as well.

Just as teams lacking gender diversity in the workplace aren’t as effective at innovating, the same goes for leadership. The Global Leadership Forecast, a study that looked at demographic data from over 2,400 organizations in 54 countries, suggests that gender diversity can increase a business’s bottom line and accelerate company growth.

3. Stay persistent and avoid complacency. 

Yes, overall, the U.S. workforce is becoming more diverse. Still, the tech sector has been slower to catch up, especially at major tech companies where the gender diversity gap is staggering. While a business might become profitable, it won’t see long-term success or reach its potential if the company lacks gender diversity. Companies should be careful not to let today’s success create complacency on their initiative to increase gender diversity.

“Knowledge is power, especially within ever-changing tech industries, and it’s immediately within your control. I’ve found that growth-stage companies provide an equalizing ground because there is too much to achieve in too short a time–all helping hands are appreciated. Finally, having senior-level mentors, female & male, who can, beyond providing insight, help open doors to key opportunities will make a huge impact on your career trajectory.”- Rachel Mimken, VP of Operations
“You belong! Within any industry, including tech, some women can feel the pressure to fit their personality, presence, and appearance into the pre-determined stereotypes of how women should be. It is hard to fight off impostor syndrome and the nagging feeling that you don’t belong. But I am here to tell you that you do belong and your strengths and perspectives are needed. When I started working in the tech industry, I was the only woman in the room for a while. You know, where you rarely saw another soul in the ladies' room and on too many occasions was mistaken for someone’s assistant. I had to constantly remind myself that I belonged and deserved all the success that was given to me. If anything, all women should practice saying these words out loud: ‘I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished and belong based on my strengths and perspective.’”- Megan Sullivan-Jenks, Senior Director of Brand & Product Marketing
“Get involved in your local tech community! I've met a ton of great people by going to tech industry meetups and classes at General Assembly, Denver Startup Week, and Colorado Product. If you're not sure where to start, search for different groups in your area.”- Julie Pifer, Product Manager
“As an engineer, there were many times in my career when I was the only woman in the room. Not just at work, but also outside of work at meetups. There was one time I attended a CTO meetup in New York and got asked if I was a designer. In these moments, I had to fight back against falling into imposter syndrome. It's a natural response when no one else in the room looks like you. My advice is to remember that you belong, speak with confidence & authority, and be proud to be the only woman in the room.``- Genevieve Bulger, Director of Engineering
“Many companies focus on gender diversity simply from the point of view of equality. And whereas providing great career opportunities is absolutely the right thing to do, it is also smart business. Every major study shows that diversity in the workplace contributes materially to increased creativity, innovation, and overall profitability. And for Choozle, it’s also a key contribution to our cultural identity–both internally and externally. With our efforts to maintain and grow gender diversity across all teams including our engineering group, it bolsters our reputation and continues our momentum of recruiting and retaining excellent team members. These efforts include community involvement and sponsorship of several local female-focused tech events such as Women in Tech, Women in Product, and Together Digital. And internally, Choozle provides an education stipend to all team members so they can level up their training or attend conferences.”- Andrew Fischer, Co-founder & CEO

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