The 2015 CES (consumer electronics show) unveiled more than just futuristic gadgets and retro-chic tech. Intel’s CEO Brian Krzanich made a bold announcement when he pledged his company would invest $300 million over the next five years to promote gender and racial diversity. Their goal is to have complete and equal representation by the end of that time.
In Krzanich’s own words, “It’s not good enough to say we value diversity and then have our workplaces and our industry not reflect the full availability of a talent pool of women and underrepresented minorities.”
David Frigstad, CEO of growth consulting firm Frost and Sullivan knows that the empowerment of women and minorities in beneficial beyond just moral responsibility – it has measured economic success. “The investment in diversity at all levels of an organization is proving to drive significantly higher performance results,” he shared with the Ecommerce Times. Despite the fact that women have a harder time receiving funding and resources from venture capitalists, women-led startups failed less often than men. Further, companies with greater gender diversity delivered better results from IPOs by as much as 30%. Doing the right thing can certainly pay off.
There is hope that Intel’s big steps forward will trickle down to its subsidiaries. Given Intel’s position as the primary technology used in PCs and a source of funding, gaming companies are now being watched. Rob Endrle, a principal analyst for the Enderle Group notes that if these gaming companies “aren’t in compliance with [Intel’s] policies, they could lose their funding.” In other words, bad behavior means big risks. While 2014 was characterized by the violent threats against women made by those in the gaming sphere, hopefully 2015 will be colored by positive strides toward a more diverse and increasingly welcoming technology and gaming community.
Adhikari, Richard. “Intel Takes Up Diversity Challenge to the Tune of $300M.” Intel Takes Up Diversity Challenge to the Tune of $300M. ECT News Network, 7 Jan. 2015. Web. 12 Jan. 2015.
Dockterman, Eliana. “Imagine If Half of All Tech Inventions and Start-Ups Came From Women.” Time. Time, 29 May 2014. Web. 12 Jan. 2015.