David Gilboa on Diversity at Warby Parker
Diversity is key to building a successful organization. Teaching yourself to shed your subconscious inhibitions to it is the first real step.
Dave Gilboa is the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Warby Parker, a transformative fashion brand offering designer eyewear at a revolutionary price while leading the way for socially-conscious businesses.
David Gilboa: Our team at Warby Parker is now several hundred people and I think we have really learned a lesson in that diversity is key to building a successful organization. And diversity and multiple levels whether it’s gender, experience, age, geography. People bring different perspectives that could be really powerful.\r\n
When we launched Warby Parker we were four males, but more than half our customers are females. And I think we recognized early on that while we might think we know what women want, but if our customer base is going to be more than 50 percent female, we need that perspective on our team and every element of the business. Once we hired our initial team we quickly appreciated that having different perspectives can be — is not only important to us, but is necessary.\r\n
When we hire for a role, we try to find the best person in the world for that role and we don’t have a specific goal in mind for what that person looks like or talks like. But we recognize that it’s inherent human bias to surround yourself by people that remind you of yourself. And so you have to be really deliberate in terms of casting a wide net to ensuring that you are bringing in people that have different perspectives that could challenge you and the existing team. And so now we very deliberate efforts whether it's where we’re recruiting from, where we’re posting job descriptions, really ensuring that at the top of the funnel we’re bringing in a lot of diversity and allowing ourselves to be surprised by candidates that we might not naturally gravitate towards.
When you run a business like Warby Parker, as David Gilboa does, it's important to bring in an array of perspectives that mirror your potential customer base (it's also just the right thing to do!). But in order to foster a diverse workplace, it's important to shed one's subconscious apprehensions. You have to recognize that inherent human bias pushes you to want to hire people more like yourself than different. You have to re-teach yourself how you analyze talent. Most important, you have to push yourself to be at your most deliberate when interviewing and choosing new employees.
Good science is sometimes trumped by the craving for a "big splash."
- Scientists strive to earn credit from their peers, for grants from federal agencies, and so a lot of the decisions that they make are strategic in nature. They're encouraged to publish exciting new findings that demonstrate some new phenomenon that we have never seen before.
- This professional pressure can affect their decision-making — to get acclaim they may actually make science worse. That is, a scientist might commit fraud if he thinks he can get away with it or a scientist might rush a result out of the door even though it hasn't been completely verified in order to beat the competition.
- On top of the acclaim of their peers, scientists — with the increasing popularity of science journalism — are starting to be rewarded for doing things that the public is interested in. The good side of this is that the research is more likely to have a public impact, rather than be esoteric. The bad side? To make a "big splash" a scientist may push a study or article that doesn't exemplify good science.
Moans, groans, and gripes release stress hormones in the brain.
Could you give up complaining for a whole month? That's the crux of this interesting piece by Jessica Hullinger over at Fast Company. Hullinger explores the reasons why humans are so predisposed to griping and why, despite these predispositions, we should all try to complain less. As for no complaining for a month, that was the goal for people enrolled in the Complaint Restraint project.
Participants sought to go the entirety of February without so much as a moan, groan, or bellyache.
Two space agencies plan missions to deflect an asteroid.
- NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) are working together on missions to a binary asteroid system.
- The DART and Hera missions will attempt to deflect and study the asteroid Didymoon.
- A planetary defense system is important in preventing large-scale catastrophes.
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