- Title: Google case shows the importance of diversity - business professor
- Date: 8th August 2017
- Summary: LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES (AUGUST 8, 2017) (REUTERS VIA SKYPE) (SOUNDBITE) (English) PEPPERDINE UNIVERSITY, GRAZIADIO SCHOOL OF BUSINESS AND MANAGEMENT, CHAIR OF MASTER OF SCIENCE IN LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT PROGRAM, DR. BERNICE LEDBETTER, SAYING: "It's going to showcase even more how important diversity is and how far organizations in Silicon Valley need to go in order to be gender-balanced and diversity-balanced. Right now, I think, the Valley is very male-dominated. So, it's not balanced. And it understands that. It's taking actions to remedy that situation, that imbalance."
- Embargoed: 22nd August 2017 18:50
- Keywords: freedom of speech Bernice Ledbetter employment employee anti-diversity manifesto James Damore hiring work free-speech rights diversity Google workforce employer email First Amendment Sundar Pichai job
- Location: SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, AND LOS ANGELES, AND SANTA MONICA, AND MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIFORNIA, AND NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES, UNKNOWN LOCATION / INTERNET
- City: SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, AND LOS ANGELES, AND SANTA MONICA, AND MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIFORNIA, AND NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES, UNKNOWN LOCATION / INTERNET
- Country: USA
- Topics: Company News Markets,Economic Events
- Reuters ID: LVA0056TARWP3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Google fired a male engineer, James Damore, on Monday (August 7) for what it called "advancing harmful gender stereotypes" in a memo he wrote.
In that memo posted on an internal Google message board, Damore wrote that men, in general, may be biologically more suited to coding jobs than women, and that gender diversity shouldn't be a goal. He also stated that his employer was hostile to conservative viewpoints and shaped by a flawed left-wing ideology.
Bernice Ledbetter, who leads the leadership program at Pepperdine University's business school, says Damore wanted to get attention.
"I think, that it is important to note that, by doing this, he's making a bold declaration to his organization and to organizations probably worldwide, she said.
"Had he stayed quiet, you know, had he not said anything, but still acted on his values, it actually would be worse. So, by sort of coming out, if you will, now the organization understands and knows, there's a pocket of misalignment in our organization, something that we need to address. So, I think, that, while it's disturbing, it's going to be helpful for the organization."
Google's chief executive Sundar Pichai told employees in a note that James Damore violated the company's code of conduct.
Damore said he was exploring a possible legal challenge. He also accused Google's upper management of trying to shame him into silence.
Damore's memo stoked a heated debate over treatment of women in the male-dominated Silicon Valley that has boiled for months following sexual harassment scandals at Uber Technologies Inc and several venture capital firms.
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