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Former Google Female Technical Director: Stop asking for the ratio of men and women in the technical team!

via:博客园     time:2018/3/9 17:31:25     readed:281

Original English text:I’m An Ex-Google Woman Tech Leader And I’m Sick Of Our Approach To Diversity!

The author of the article, Vidya Narayanan, is a former Google technical manager who has presided over a number of cross-functional engineering projects of 20 to 30 (most of which are engineers). Most of the time, she is the only female in the project/team and can win the love and respect of male colleagues. The reason why the author wrote this article is that she really can't stand the current intention to make demands on the ratio of male and female technicians, and wants to explore how to improve the status quo.


I have participated in a lot of recruitment work at Google. At that time, I wrote a lot of requests to the recruitment committee to win opportunities for some very capable candidates. Although other male interviewers thought they were inappropriate, I believe that as a woman, the judgment in certain aspects is more accurate and We firmly believe that these candidates will become Google’s valuable assets.

In the vast majority of cases, I can persuade the committee, and almost every employee hired in this way will do well in the follow-up work.

It is worth mentioning that 98% of them are men. I don't mean to hire female employees. The truth is that 90% of the candidates in the pool are men —— Don't rush to oppose them. You can search for engineers’ resumes with sensor, wireless, and hardware experience.—— I can no longer Improve the employment rate of female employees.

Later, I left Google to create UrbanAMA. As a female entrepreneur, I hope to build a gender-diverse team. But unfortunately, I still have not succeeded.

We tried very hard. You have to know that we are still an early-stage startup and we haven't been able to raise the average market salary, but even so, we still provide superior salaries to some female candidates who performed well in interviews.

However, they did not perform well after joining the company. They did not become the team's strengths, but instead made the team lose its vitality. In the end we dismissed them for the sake of company development. So now I have become the only woman in the (technical) team.

Although I am very satisfied with the female employees of other positions in UrbanAMA, they are doing very well. However, in diversifying the technical team, we must admit that although we tried hard, we still did a very bad job.

I am also the mother of two children —— I have a 7-year-old son and a 9-year-old daughter—— they all have good math and logic skills, and you can think of them as such (because they have one The GRE essay took the perfect score of the mother and a GRE mathematics to get full marks of the dad.)

This summer we started teaching them Python. The son seemed interested and asked questions continuously, but his daughter stated that she did not want to learn. Instead, she was willing to learn Photoshop and make new filters and stickers for Urbanama.

Sometimes, girls are more interested in creative issues than logical issues, either by nature or by the environment. Although it has been my duty to encourage children to start, I have to do more than this.

I told my daughter that she must learn to program and wait until she has learned enough to choose whether to continue or give up (parenting experts don't want to turn me over).

After experiencing various different gender diversification attempts, I discovered that everyone’s dedication to gender diversity and the current methods employed actually harmed female technology people.

What does it mean?

We are dissatisfied with the gender ratio in the technical field, so we have established rules that require the employment of more female employees. However, there are far more males in the candidate pool than females. Because of the long absence of pellets, we have to reduce recruitment requirements in order to recruit enough female employees.

However, the performance of female employees recruited is not satisfactory. This makes those who are already opposed to gender diversity believe that women are not qualified for technical work. They even generalized this conclusion to the entire technical field.

These opinions will be disseminated and known to the outside world. Feminists will be angered. Then the gender diversity advocates rose again and once again established the rules for hiring more women.

So, caught in a vicious circle ……

We held the banner of gender diversity to complete the recruitment index, but in fact it has brought harm to the truly talented women in the technology field. I am deeply disgusted with this.

I do not oppose gender diversity. What I actually oppose is the status quo:

  • Inequality of wages and incomes of male and female employees;
  • There is a lot of potential bias against women's technology practitioners. There are a lot of things involved here (from "You are a woman, so you must not be an engineer", to "You are a woman, you have a high probability of sex and you can only wander in On the lower level ”);
  • Sexual harassment in the workplace;
  • Girls clubs and boy clubs are mutually exclusive;
  • My objection is to force gender diversity in an area that is inherently male-dominated. This practice will cause us trouble.

So what should we do?

We should start from the roots: Encourage more female students to apply for the engineering profession!

During part of my time at UrbanAMA, I worked with a group of young girls from high school or university, and took the opportunity to encourage them to study computer science and gain an engineering degree. Many girls told me about the unfavorable treatment they received on campus (even at a senior institution like the University of California, Berkeley) and thanked me for their support and encouragement. I think these are the places we need to change.

If the number of women receiving technical education increases, then gender diversity in the technical field will be solved.

I urge those outstanding technical women to exert your influence in the young girls group and encourage and guide them when they are at the crossroads of technical disciplines.

There are also some men who are sincerely trying to help us. They were scared off by radical feminists. They are actually willing to support and develop technical women groups. But those of us who are "response to the symptoms," "gender diversification movements" have made people Stay away from it.

For those who are willing to help, we should give guidance; and those who do not respect female technology people, we ignore it.

I understand the distresses faced by women, such as programming skills may be higher than the average level of colleagues, but it is not recognized, this is really a very frustrating thing. But instead of increasing complaints, it is better to face it positively and find a solution.

Sometimes it is an effective way to make people who hate women feel self-seeking.

What can we do?

  • Go out to talk with the female and female sophomores and tell them the benefits of choosing the path to technology;
  • Conduct mentoring activities;
  • If you are a manager, make sure your female employees are treated and recognized as they should be;
  • Whether men or women, tell them how to detect and correct potential prejudices;
  • Finding some male volunteers and letting them go to other male compatriots will be more effective.

Create a bright future for women technologists!

Author Vidya Narayanan, Translator Xie Jianfen

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