We tracked gender diversity on Google's event stage. It's not great — but it beats Apple.
To get a sense of a tech company's commitment to diversity, pay attention to its keynote stages.
During Google's Made by Google event on Tuesday, the company debuted a slew of new products, like the Pixel phone and Google Home. On the same stage, the company inadvertently revealed its subsisting gender divide.
Men spoke for approximately 62 minutes. Women spoke for approximately 10.
This is a slightly more even ratio than Apple's iPhone 7 keynote event in September, where men spoke for over 99 minutes and women spoke for approximately 8.
Of the total speakers on Google's stage, there were two women and seven men, or about 22% women. How does this compare to Google's overall workforce? According to the 2015 diversity report, women made up 31% of the company, and held just 24% of leadership positions.
In response to the company's latest diversity figures, which revealed meager improvement, Google diversity coordinator Yolanda Mangolini called it a "journey," reported Fortune. "We're a 60,000-person company and culture change takes time." (We have reached out to Google about representation at this week's event and will update with any response.)
A workforce more equal in gender representation isn't just beneficial for the internal culture of a company, it's beneficial for a company's bottom line.
"When we leverage the power of diversity, companies and teams perform better: They are more innovative and bring in more revenue and profits," Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO and author of Lean In, wrote in Cosmopolitan.
Google spearheaded the movement for tech companies to be more transparent about their diversity figures. It has become expected of Silicon Valley to release their annual diversity reports, allowing the public to hold them accountable while forcing them to take a look in the mirror. And while diversity reports are an expansive and statistical overview of a company's progress, they don't perfectly reflect the tech industry's commitment to equality.
As we previously reported, diverse leaders in tech and their public visibility matter too. Who companies choose to grace their stages — stages that capture millions of people's attention — is an informal but effective showcase of their commitment to leadership parity.