How can an engineering team foster gender and cultural diversity in the team from the start?

Kevin is the VP of Engineering at Abnormal Security, overseeing all aspects of growth and execution. In this class, Kevin describes the requirements for building a well-rounded and highly functional engineering team from both a technical and cultural perspective. Kevin spent time at eBay and Quantcast prior to becoming an early-stage engineer leader at TellApart, then a Director of Engineering at Twitter.

I think the, from the start is a really,important distinction here too, because like most other problems as well, the longer anyone waits to address an issue.

Kevin W: Gender and cultural diversity, the harder it takes to make that kind of change and really, steer a much bigger ship or company leader stage versus prioritize that very thoughtfully intentionally very early on. So the things that I've always thought about in this dimension, it has to come from a variety of different mechanisms.

Number one, I think you have to have a very [00:10:00] structured and intentional recruiting process where you identify for every role on the team. What are the absolute must haves and what are the, what are not must has for that actual role so that you can objectively evaluate any candidate, right? That you happen to, evaluate and consider for a role versus letting any of your subconscious or just instinctual biases come into play about what's comfortable and familiar to you. And that really comes from working backwards from what is the job to be done, what will be the day to day expectations in that role? And therefore, how do I derive out the actual must have core competencies and functional skills needed to succeed in an actual role.

So I think that one's really important without that type of intentional and structured and objective evaluation frame. It's very hard to feel like you can evaluate fairly right. across the board. And then I think the other one that really matters as well is that you have to make sure that your.

Prioritizing top of the funnel, candidates. And make sure you're looking at a diverse kind of set. [00:11:00] Obviously, if you don't have the chance to talk to someone, there's no chance you can actually hire a set person, From that more diverse background. And that takes a intentional focus on looking at these different pipelines, for talent. And find them cause you want to talk to them. I think the third thing I would say as well, it's also super critical. just like any other leader, not just exclusive engineering, you have to find the rising stars in your company, And really nurture and promote and encourage them to actualize their potential and become leaders in the longterm.

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