I read a post on Medium by Rachel Thomas. Rachel gets tech. She has a phD from Duke in math. Enough said.
In her post she highlights some really great statistics that I will share. Her post is a worthy read.
41% of women in tech end up leaving after 7 years vs 17% of men. The main reason for leaving? Discriminatory work places.
Investors prefer identical pitches from a man vs a woman by 68% to 32%.
Women who ask for a salary raise were rated as being more difficult to work with and less nice vs their male counterparts who were not perceived negatively for negotiating for a salary raise.
In 248 performance reviews in high tech, negative criticism such as abrasive, strident and irrational showed up in 85% of the reviews of women vs 2% for men. Seriously?
The bias is huge. Things need to change. Men need to change their thinking more than women. Especially male leaders. Sexism is everywhere. The stories that I could tell are beyond but nobody wants to point fingers.
I have been spending the last few weeks talking to sponsors about the Women’s Entrepreneur Festival next April. This year it will be held at 1 World Trade Center as we are taking it on the road (no longer at NYU). One of the subjects I have talked about with sponsors is how unique the event is. When there is 400+women entrepreneurs in a comfortable environment it is amazing how they learn from each other, validate each other and inspire each other. Our tag line is connect and be heard.
When I read these statistics, I can’t help think about WEFestival. and I will be writing more about that in the months to come.
What I will share is that after reading so many of these statistics, watching first hand behavior in companies overwhelmingly male I have made an investing decision. This will be adding to my thesis. Already almost 75% of the companies I have invested in are women founders. I invest in men too but I will not invest in a company that are all bros. When I open a deck and see a bunch of smiling guys without one female on the team I close the deck. Change has to happen from the investors too. Building companies that have gender balance from the get-go will create different environments for women and if you look at the data around women outperforming men these days (ROI), I am pretty confident this is a very wise choice.