In his latest podcast, CEO Campfire Chat, Rob Ristagno interviews Joseph Fung is a serial entrepreneur who has a passion for corporate social responsibility(CSR) and diversity, equity, and inclusion(DEI).
Joseph Fung is a serial entrepreneur who already had a passion for CSR and DEI when he co-founded his fifth company, Uvaro. As an organization offering tech sales training to individuals looking to break into the space, conversations around equitable hiring practices are inherent to its business model.
When asked to define DEI, though, Joseph offers a definition that goes beyond thinking about hiring practices. He looks at it from the perspective of globalization. Today, all organizations are inherently global. Customers aren’t just neighbors; they can be people from anywhere in the world. If you want to build a business that supports this diverse community of customers, DEI must be central to your work.
At Uvaro, Joseph identifies two secrets to success with respect to DEI initiatives: measuring early and being deliberate about hiring.
Joseph says it’s never too early to start tracking your DEI metrics. When an organization is thousands-strong, it’s difficult to correct any imbalances on the team. But when you begin measuring your DEI metrics from day one, you never reach a gross asymmetry in the first place.
Building a diverse team begins with removing biases from your hiring process. At Uvaro, the team has replaced the phrase “culture fit” with “culture add.” Rather than looking for someone to fit into the mold of what you envision as the right person for your culture, looking for a culture add asks, “What are we missing?”
This simple shift in mindset drives managers to create lists of the characteristics they’re looking for in a candidate, rather than trying to filter individuals out using the vague “culture fit” metric. Similarly, candidates feel as if they’re being invited in, rather than weeded out.
With respect to CSR, Joseph says it’s about making a positive impact on the world today. Some founders think of philanthropy as a “someday” activity—once they’ve reached success, then they can start giving back.
Joseph views it differently. He has incorporated that generosity into Uvaro’s day-to-day operation. The organization has joined the 1% pledge and is in the process of becoming a certified B Corp.
Key points include:
- Thinking philanthropically
- The benefits of embracing DEI and CSR
- Making scalable conversation a sustainable thing
Access the podcast, Making the Business Case for CSR and DEI, on SterlingWoods.com.