To Protest Sexism, Google Employees Are Adding "Lady" to Their Job Titles
Employees at Google are not shying away from a sexist remark made to their CFO.
During Google's annual shareholder meeting last week, an investor addressed chief financial officer Ruth Porat as "the lady CFO," Business Insider reported. The investor then proceeded to address Alphabet SVP of corporate development David Drummond as "Mr. Drummond." Alphabet is Google's parent company.
And seeing as "Lady" is neither a job title nor a qualifier for a CFO job, both women and men at Google are changing their job titles as a symbolic gesture to call out the casual sexist remark made during the call.
As of Thursday, more than 800 Google employees changed their job titles in their professional email signatures or company directory to include "Lady," Business Insider reported. They also identified last Thursday and Friday as "Lady Day".
During the incident itself, Danielle Ginach, Sonen Capital associate director and impact manager, called out the investor for his sexist choice of words.
"I am sorry to put another shareholder on the spot," she said, USA Today reported. "But Ms. Porat is the CFO, not the lady CFO."
The move to add "Lady" to job titles has even expanded to LinkedIn. Senior Vice President of Global Talent Organization Pat Wadors is encouraging LinkedIn users to join the movement. Wadors has changed her title to include "Lady" and posted a call to action on LinkedIn:
"Regardless of where you work or what you do, you can join in and support these conversations about equality in the workplace," Wadors wrote. "This weekend, change your title on your LinkedIn profile to 'Lady _______,' share this post, lend your voice, and join me in raising awareness. Let's change the world together!"
Google is not where it wants to be in terms of diversity, the company itself stated in its 2014 diversity report. At the time of the report, the company was 70% men and 30% women and 61% of the total workforce was white.
Google even has a dedicated page to address unconscious bias:
"Combatting our unconscious biases is hard, because they don't feel wrong; they feel right," Google writes. "But it's necessary to fight against bias in order to create a work environment that supports and encourages diverse perspectives and people."
Perhaps Google should also extend these lessons to the people on its earning calls.