Question for HC 🐠 of color. If you were offered a role at a company where there was little to no diversity within the group you were interviewing for (not even at the level you were interviewing for, or at senior leadership level) would this be a red flag for you in terms of culture, & potential opportunities? I want to keep an open mind but this company has been around for 20 years. The people I interviewed with were great but im concerned that there’s a larger problem at play. Thoughts?

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No. I am a black woman and I always think of it as we make up 14% of the total Population. A large percentage of us are in jail or working a trade job. Those of us who went to college are working as a social worker or counselor, teacher, nurse, or a call center somewhere. By virtue of the systems that oppress us, be used to being the only person of color at your job. Until the systems are dismantled, do your part to provide opportunities to other people of color. I will say this...a giant red flag is if they are offering you a position you are clearly unqualified for. In this case, you will be used as a brown face in the department. You won’t be trusted, given responsibility, or any real work. You will eventually get depressed, burnout, and get fired or quit

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Good advice C1. I am a white male but my girlfriend is mixed race (Caribbean/white) and your last point hit home. I’ve spent all morning with her oppressions on my mind feeling very sorry for her and after reading your comment we’re really going to really keep this in mind.

I am NOT a POC but I own an agency that grew from just me to around 60 now. We were 30 people before realizing we weren’t very diverse and we believed it was because we hadn’t take a purposeful approach toward hiring. Our candidates were coming to us from one job posting. As such, we were just hiring whoever applied and could do the work. Thank God the POC we hired didn’t feel our lack of diversity was a red flag because we would not be the diverse organization we are today had she not taken a chance on us. Please give everyone the benefit of the doubt and maybe point blank ask what their approach to DEI is. You may find that this is a priority for them now because they just had no idea of the problem before. At least in my case, I needed someone on the leadership team pointing out and filling my blind spots because I had the desire to be diverse but not the tool box. I needed help in this area and I was lucky to have gotten it. I have to agree with C1 though in that we hired this person in the leadership role she deserved. It wasn’t just for the sake of having someone on staff that looked different.

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Look I have a lot to learn in the context of DEI. Truly. So my perspective is just that, the result of a lot of growth and understanding but an open mind for more. Maybe it’s just that there’s never a bad time to learn. And you’re right. There could be a million reasons why they should be punished for taking so long on the uptake. But if the tile is good and the leadership feels right then why not be the catalyst? Regardless, it may be a good question to just point blank ask. I’d respect the question and anywhere worth working would, too. Or I could be completely wrong. Happens all the time 😅

I do think it’s kind of odd being an Indian man. If everyone’s name is an “English name” I think it’s a problem. I once interviewed at a place where Nobody with immigrant backgrounds or first generation people. I find that very odd for a software company because most tech firms include a high number of East Asian and south Asians. I took that as the company is not open to other cultures or other viewpoints.

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I agree partially with C1. However, let me offer an alternative perspective too: It depends on the company. I used to think that if there weren’t any black people then they weren’t diverse and that was wrong of me as a POC. Diversity is age, gender, culture, etc. I got my start at a company that was mostly women who looked white but were in fact all different ages, cultures, and backgrounds. It doesn’t bother me if there are any POC or not, my job is to work hard and impact careers, not worry about headcount. Maybe it’s different for others but my skin color doesn’t impact my work lol I do the same work I would do anywhere. If you’re applying for a job that you know you aren’t qualified for then that is a red flag. You are being used for a cheap diversity number and it’s not worth the struggles you’ll face later with be under qualified. Good luck! Wishing the best! ☺️

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Some of these responses put companies in a catch-22: if they are not currently “diverse” enough then you shouldn’t join them because they may only be hiring you to help solve a perceived problem of diversity. If every candidate thought that way then these companies would never hire “diverse” talent and you’d still complain. Maybe see if you like the people and the job and don’t focus so much on skin color.

Nothing in my response dismissed your concerns - I offered another perspective for you to consider. You sure made a lot of untrue assumptions about me though.

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