As one Silicon Valley bro after another rolls out his tech firm’s latest gadget or fancy new app, questions about the toxic work environment for women persist.
A recent survey, taken after the highly-publicized Ellen Pao gender discrimination trial, shows that women in tech still bump up against the old boys’ club in terms of advancement, and even blatant sexual harassment. A study of 200 women with more than 10 years’ tech experience shows that 60 percent report being subjected to unwanted advances. An even higher figure, 66%, said they felt excluded from networking events because of their gender.
For example, according to Kimberly Weisul in Inc., one respondent described an incident with a venture capitalist who was “going on about how committed he was to his trade organization’s diversity task force, and then effortlessly segued right into a conversation about which strip club he was going to visit with another VC.”
More than four out of five women (84%) were told they were too aggressive. A higher number (87%) reported men having made a demeaning comment towards them.
(See the survey results HERE)
Across the country, there are a number of well-intentioned programs to encourage girls and women to get into tech. But any such change should also include strategies that push companies to change the toxic work environment.
As Weisul noted, “It’s a sexist culture, and it’s not something women can fix on their own.”