Participants:Kim CraytonJamie Anne HarrellThis frank and informative fireside chat centered on the idea that diversity and inclusion have a real world financial impact on businesses, and that when companies focus on it from that perspective, it is often easier and more effective to enact change from within.Kim started out by saying, "When people talk about inclusion and diversity they are often very myopic." She went on to say that this is an issue about business, and money, and noted that the discussion would be framed around dollars and cents rather than a moral point of view.Jamie reinforced those sentiments, saying that this was an important thing for businesses to approach. She also talked about the problem of cognitive dissonance, and how when you bring someone who has a strongly held belief, facts that are contrary to that belief, they are more likely to dig in and double down on their erroneous stance. Her advice was to approach these issues from the stance of an insider, with an emphasis on the higher profits possible for companies that embrace diversity and inclusion.Kim: "Its not a lack of caring, its a lack of knowing what to do." She elaborated on this, emphasizing the need for companies to implement strategic policies, processes and procedures to ensure that what they are doing doesn't have unintended negative effects.Diversity Stimulates Your People to Work HarderImproves employee engagementImproves employee retentionAn ENDA compliant work place gives you access to more talent Kim: "Everyone wants to bring diverse individuals into companies. But what they are doing is bringing them into toxic environments. It's not about people coming in and assimilating to your culture. Your culture has to expand as each person comes into your company."Jamie: "There are many tech companies that end up with diversity debt. That's a liability to company." She then spoke about the importance of implementing a strategy for inclusion from the very beginning, because if you don't, it will end up costing you exponentially more to recruit diverse individuals.Diversity Improves the performance of teams and helps connect with more customersImproves decisions and eliminates group thinkCreates more innovative productsHelps you understand and connect with a broader base Kim: "We are not an industrial economy. We are an information economy."Companies That Take Diversity and Inclusion SeriouslyHave statistically higher profitsAchieve higher growthPrivilege is About AccessJamie: This is often the ability to dismiss or ignore issues because they dont effect you. Underrepresented is about numbers.Marginalization is about treatment.Inclusion is not equalityInclusion is not quotasInclusion is experienceIntention is not good enough, you need strategy. Just intent without thought can cause more harm.Jamie: "It starts by saying we're gonna do better and it's going to help the bottom line."Jamie: "Use strategy to make financial gains, and you have to measure or you don't have any control."What's Working and What's NotDoesn't WorkForced Diversity TrainingGenerates backlashBackfire effectJob TestsInconsistently used.Not always applied to people who have a friend or inside track at the company.May not be interpretive.Doesn't really test what is important.Grievance SystemsManager resistance, lack of results, fewer grievances get reported.Does WorkVoluntary diversity training. One of the largest gains.Cross training.Focused college recruiting on women and minorities.Mentoring: Even gatekeepers who are white male can have a vested interest in a mentee minority. It raises their prestige if the mentee does well.Kim was, however, sure to remind everyone that a bad mentor is worse than no mentor at all.Diversity task forces.Diversity managers.Questions From the AudienceWhat's the difference between coaching and mentoring?Kim: Coaching helps you solve problems in your current job. Mentoring is advice that comes from across your professional career, helping you to get to the next level. A coach can have the same job as you. A mentor should have had your job and transitioned beyond it.How can someone who is working in tech every day handle these issues?They both had similar advise for this question. Kim said that if the managers at your company can't handle diversity and inclusion issues, then it may be time for you to eave and find another company. Jamie advised people to look for companies that are doing better, and which have the proper policies and procedures in place.