The one thing that’s worked so far

February 10th, 2013

I gave a talk last October at the First Round CTO Summit on what we’d learned at Etsy about hiring great engineers and in particular great women engineers for our team, and a little bit about the promising results we’d seen from the Etsy + Hacker School program.

The video went up last week, it’s 18 minutes long, it was given in a venue that was originally off the record and aimed at CTOs, and talks primarily about the work that Marc led. Folks seem to find it interesting, which is deeply gratifying.

NB: also when I say “81 of them were women”, obviously I meant “81 of them were men”. This is the problem with giving talks on back to back days on different topics in Tokyo and San Francisco, you aren’t at your most polished.

The slides are on slideshare.

The Atlantic wrote up their interpretation of the talk.

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2 responses to “The one thing that’s worked so far”

  1. Karen Catlin says:

    Thank goodness there are enlightened CTOs and companies such as Kellan Elliott-McCrea and Etsy. Keep up the great work!

    I would like to better understand the research that you refer to in your presentation: a) the CMU study on people performing better in math and sciences if fifty percent of the participants are women and b) the research from both the Kellogg and Sloan Schools suggest that cognitively diverse teams perform better on hard problems. Can you provide links to these studies?

    Many thanks, Karen Catlin, Developing powerful women leaders in the tech industry

  2. Sandy says:

    I heard your talk on this topic at Hack & Jill last year and was really intrigued. Thanks for posting the video so I (and others) could hear it again.

    I’m many years out of college, but can still remember how intimidating it was being the only female engineer on the team at my first job. In fact I was referred to as “the woman engineer”. I love what you said, that with more than 2 women engineers on a team, we are just “engineers”.

    Thanks also for sharing your learnings so loudly and repeatedly with your peers, even if, as you said yourself, that you don’t have all the answers. It’s important to spread the idea!


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