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THANK GOD FOR ASIANS: Google Releases Diversity Numbers...

First up, let's point out the obvious - anyone who doesn't think Google is a huge engine of innovation in the world is smoking crack.

Now, let's ask a tough question - do we expect Google to keep kicking out the innovation jams with a workforce that matches what America looks like?

That's what we call leading the witness or a trap question.  Here's what Google's workforce looks like per a recent post at the Google blog:

Screen Shot 2014-06-03 at 3.37.24 PM

Alarming?  I think not.  James Carville once said "it's the economy, stupid".  In this case, the quote would be "it's math and science degrees, stupid".  People who chase math and science (and are world class) get rewarded with careers at companies like Google.  Here's some stat magic from the blog post at Google:

"There are lots of reasons why technology companies like Google struggle to recruit and retain women and minorities. For example, women earn roughly 18 percent of all computer science degrees in the United States. Blacks and Hispanics each make up under 10 percent of U.S. college grads and each collect fewer than 10 percent of degrees in CS majors. So we’ve invested a lot of time and energy in education.

Among other things, since 2010 we’ve given more than $40 million to organizations working to bring computer science education to women and girls. And we’ve been working with historically black colleges and universities to elevate coursework and attendance in computer science. For example, this year Google engineer Charles Pratt was in-residence at Howard University, where he revamped the school’s Intro to CS curriculum."

If I react to anything in those numbers, it's this.  Daaaaaaaamn - Asians are kicking some ass.  For real.  If careers at Google are what you want for your kids, we probably need to take a look at the various nationalities that comprise the Asian category and figure out what they are doing right - even in American schools - to prep their kids for this type of work.  My kids are smart and actually decent at Math and Science, in advanced classes, but there's a couple of Asian kids that are the Michael Jordan and Larry Bird (threw in a white guy for balance - did you catch that?) of math at their school.

My kid was on the college bowl team for the stuff that didn't involve Math.  When a math question came up, all the other kids took their hand off the buzzer and just looked at the Asian kid I'll call "MJ" - as to say, "you've got this one MJ - we'll be over here reading TMZ if you need us to sharpen your pencil."

MJ's going to work at Google.  His family doesn't need Google to do anything to get him there.

I'm looking at the Google diversity numbers and resisting the urge to wag the finger.  Keep on crushing product and eroding overall privacy, G-town.  I'll give you a golf clap for the good faith efforts to build more diverse math and science pipeline, but then give a knowing nod to the people who are really crushing it in those numbers - the many nationalities that comprise the fictional, yet powerful, EEO category of "Asian".

Comments

Earl

I will never forget interviewing an Asian female for an Electrical Engineer position. I asked the classic question, "Why did you get an Engineering degree? What interests you about Engineering?"

Without skipping a beat she looked at me and said, "Well, as you can see I am Asian. My parents said that I had two choices - become a doctor or become an Engineer. I chose Engineer."

Did not even blink. We had to chuckle at the direct honesty in her answer. Tiger Moms FTW.

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