For me, equity at the workplace means having the opportunity to progress as the person we are without having to take up more space or adopt toxic behaviors just to be equally seen. In recent years, universities and companies have made significant steps in creating an organizational framework around empowering minorities. We’ve seen an increase in mentorship programs, events, and support systems that aim to promote gender equality and diversity. However, despite these efforts, we have yet to see a significant increase in the number of minorities in STEM workplaces.
I am convinced it’s not due to a lack of passion but a lack of promise for an encouraging future work environment. We live in some of the world’s most developed countries and hold some of the most privileged jobs, yet we still struggle to create an inclusive industry for everyone who is genuinely interested. In my view, the global technology sector is still influenced by outdated social patterns that disproportionately affect minorities. If we were to ask them what they need, I doubt they would request another leadership conference.
For me, I think that the most powerful solution to change our team culture and behaviors lies in personal level. We need great management to initiate this process, but great management alone cannot take us all the way. We should all reflect on how our socialization and underlying beliefs impact our teamwork daily. I believe that the way we listen to others depends on the assumptions we make about them. We assign different levels of importance to people’s opinions, and although there is nothing inherently wrong with this, we should question why we do it.
Our perceptions form a part of our comfort zone, and it is healthy to leave it more often than not. Even as a woman in tech and a foreigner in a country, I am also learning. Speaking up as a minority does not always result in acceptance, and advocating for equity comes with social and professional risks. I do not think we fully know how much energy this takes from affected individuals.
Working at Lucinity and being surrounded by amazing people who care about equity in our teams is something I don't take for granted. Our company is a genuinely inspiring workplace, and I hope we can raise the standards for others.