Mark Gritter (markgritter) wrote,
Mark Gritter

Blind Hiring and Blind Funding?

Eric Ries contributed a TechCrunch article on Silicon Valley's Racism and Meritocracy: neither completely explains what's going on.

The suggestion to intentionally blank out identifying information while screening candidates is a good one. (Maybe we could go even further and perform coding interviews remotely, using only text to communicate.)

That does, however, bring up some longstanding discomfort on my part about the typical programming interview. I've seen a lot of candidates who look good on paper, and seem to be doing OK in the current jobs--- but when they're in front of a whiteboard they seemingly can't program their way out of a paper bag. I can believe it's true in some cases. But I would feel more comfortable with a "portfolio" approach of sharing previous work (and maybe answering questions about it.) On the other hand, I'd really prefer not to hire anybody who honestly can't program.

Bias, and particularly bias in entrepreneurial environments, is something that concerns me quite a bit. (Female members of first Project Skyway class: zero.) This is industry's own version of CS academia's "incredible shrinking pipeline", and to blow it off as simply meritocracy at work is to bury one's head in the sand.
Tags: job search, startup
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