When planning your event, you will probably be occupied by such points as setting a budget, organizing a team, choosing perfect location, date and time. But as can be seen from many reports on the latest tech events, if you are set to success, you should try to create a diverse audience as well.
The problem of monoculture in tech and events dedicated to IT has recently been highlighted in press. As can be seen from such situations, the changes are urged to come. If the IT industry desires to break the stereotypes about its monoculturity, underrepresented groups should be equalized.
In the first place, most of people think of nothing more than race and gender when they hear “Diversity”, but its concept goes beyond this.
Diversity means interaction and cooperation of people from different ideological, ethnic, societal and educational levels.
Living in a society that consists of people with various and numerous outlooks is a horizon-broadening challenge to one’s intellect and tolerance.
So when we speak about a diverse event, we mean that the audience, panels and team are not consisted of only one community, race or gender. If you’ve decided to bring more people to your event, let me assure you that you will only benefit from such venture.
Firstly, the more interesting and useful the event is for attendees, the more successful it will be. People rarely would want to spend money and time again for something they did not find interesting enough. They expect new opportunities to the experience, whether it’s in their field or not. So why not make the participation truly exciting?
By making your event more inclusive you let the diverse chorus of voices join in on the conversation. It gives space for different communities to meet and communicate, to discuss themes related not only to the event. Sometimes getting to know people of different background, finding about another individual’s culture, lifestyle, beliefs and views can really blow a person’s mind. So let your attendees find new friends among each other.
Moreover, the overlapping of different insights can and undoubtedly will bring experiences, ideas and other things you may never think of. It is a great chance to adopt creative ideas and implement unique solutions to your field. And remember that it is always possible to find valuable assets to your team – just keep an eye on those who participate.
As we’ve already seen, not every technology event can boast a diverse community. Plenty of teams get criticized for losing sight of the importance of the audience they create, so this is where you can stand out. Your attention to the issue shows that your organization is committed to equality and eliminating the disparities often seen in different aspect in today’s society. Use a chance to prove that your company is on top of modern tendencies.
For these reasons an inclusive event, especially technology-dedicated, is beneficial from all sides. But it is always easier said than done - so here are 5 easy tips you could use:
#1 Pay attention to your team
Co-organizing an event can be hard if the people working on it pursue different aims and interests. Make sure that even though diverse, the members of your team have similar values and opinions on the major issues, otherwise you’re risking to develop a circular firing squad.
#2 Hold diverse panels
Introducing a panel of speakers with similar background, especially of one gender, can be a fatal mistake. Have you heard about the Tumblr account discovering “all male panels, seminars, events, and various other things featuring all male experts”? In fact, some speakers such as Owen Barder, Director of the Center for Global Development Europe, boycott events with all male panels themselves and call other speakers to support inclusive events. As they explain, it makes more of your attendees feel welcome and serves as an extra-motivation to come.