Tim Cook promises Apple will release data on corporate diversity

Posted:
in General Discussion edited July 2014
During a question-and-answer session at Allen & Co.'s annual Sun Valley conference in Idaho, Apple CEO Tim Cook said the iPhone maker will eventually quantify the diversity of its workforce in a public disclosure, but that it is now "more focused on actions."

Apple CEO Tim Cook arrives at the 2014 Allen & Co. conference in Sun Valley | Source:
Apple CEO Tim Cook arrives at the 2014 Allen & Co. conference in Sun Valley | Source: Twitter


"We'll release the information at some point," Cook told Bloomberg, referring to diversity data that would likely break down its 80,000-strong workforce by age, gender, and ethnicity. Apple is "more focused on actions" in the meantime, he added.

The company has taken flack in recent months from human rights groups for the lack of diversity in its senior leadership, which counts only two women -- board member Andrea Jung and new retail chief Angela Ahrendts. The balance of the company's board and senior vice president-level executives are white men, though African-American human resources head Denise Young-Smith reports directly to Cook.

Among those chastising Apple are the Rev. Jesse Jackson, whose Rainbow PUSH Coalition recently launched a new campaign aimed at drawing awareness to the issue of racial diversity in Silicon Valley. "Technology is supposed to be about inclusion, but sadly, patterns of exclusion remains the order of the day," Jackson wrote in a letter addressed to Apple, Twitter, Facebook, Hewlett Packard, Google, and others.

Apple has responded to the criticism by publicly committing to increase diversity, including a tweak to the company's corporate charter that commits the board to "actively [seek] out highly qualified women and individuals from minority groups to include in the pool from which board nominees are chosen."

The company has also stepped up public demonstrations of support for LGBT equality under Cook. "Thousands" of Apple employees participated in last week's Pride Parade in San Francisco under Apple's banner, including Cook.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 49
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,316member

    Uh, what a crock of shit. I'm vehemently against any kind of discrimination, especially in the hiring process and the workforce, but this is fucking ridiculous. What are these "diversity" numbers supposed to show? Should Apple have an even break-down of all minority groups represented in their total workforce #s, as well as ethnicities, ages, sexes, reglious backgrounds, etc to prove that they support "diversity"? How mind-numbing. Does a single person on the planet believes that Apple actually discriminates when hiring? I'm sure they pick the best person for the job, not to fill some "diversity" quota and get a nice looking pie-chart of their employee demographics.  

     

    I can see Cook's reluctance to release these #s, as he knows they will be fodder for Apple being dragged through the mud by those with an agenda. They're irrelevant. Apple has nothing to prove in this regard. 

  • Reply 2 of 49
    evilutionevilution Posts: 1,396member

    Just employ the right person for the job. If they happen to be non white or non straight or disabled then fair enough but don't start giving out jobs on the basis of forced diversity.

  • Reply 3 of 49
    lee493lee493 Posts: 22member
    "Actively seeking out" women and minorities does not mean that they'll be hired ahead of a more qualified candidate.
  • Reply 4 of 49
    calicali Posts: 3,494member
    Why the hell does anyone need to know this data?

    And if Apple shows us, then let's have everyone else expose who works for them.
  • Reply 5 of 49

    It's a human right to be a CEO? Where do I sign up? I won't even need a corner office, although a private bathroom would be kind of nice.

     

    Honestly, if I was a CEO, anyone demanding information form my company, and it wasn't SEC or other regulatory public required info, would be told to go f*** themselves sideways.

     

    Take Apple private, Cook, and tell all the yahoos, including Wall Street and it's village idiot pundits, where to stick it all.

  • Reply 6 of 49
    thewhitefalconthewhitefalcon Posts: 4,453member
    Tim, cut this crap out.

    Besides, Jesse Jackson is a hack. Why is anyone still listening to him?
  • Reply 7 of 49
    shenshen Posts: 434member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Evilution View Post

     

    Just employ the right person for the job. If they happen to be non white or non straight or disabled then fair enough but don't start giving out jobs on the basis of forced diversity.


    As the next person to post after you points out, seeking is not hiring.

     

    However, you can't find them if you don't look, and since we know human biases lead us to weed out qualified people if we don't look, I would rather Apple actively look, and continue to be a moral and decent company, than pretend they can be unbiased and keep hiring the all white male CIS crew that is the norm in corporate America.

     

    But your desire to maintain the status quo is noted.  Thanks for playing.

  • Reply 8 of 49
    shenshen Posts: 434member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Quiet_Desperation View Post

     

    Honestly, if I was a CEO, anyone demanding information form my company, and it wasn't SEC or other regulatory public required info, would be told to go f*** themselves sideways.

     

    Take Apple private, Cook, and tell all the yahoos, including Wall Street and it's village idiot pundits, where to stick it all.


     

    Good thing Cook is CEO and not a troglodyte like you then, huh?

  • Reply 9 of 49
    thewhitefalconthewhitefalcon Posts: 4,453member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by shen View Post

     

    As the next person to post after you points out, seeking is not hiring.

     

    However, you can't find them if you don't look, and since we know human biases lead us to weed out qualified people if we don't look, I would rather Apple actively look, and continue to be a moral and decent company, than pretend they can be unbiased and keep hiring the all white male CIS crew that is the norm in corporate America.

     

    But your desire to maintain the status quo is noted.  Thanks for playing.




    So being "moral and decent" means they should not hire qualified white male candidates when they find them, instead delaying the hiring process searching for someone of color or a female.

     

    Your bias is noted, thanks for playing.

  • Reply 10 of 49
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    The company has taken flack in recent months from human rights groups for the lack of diversity....

     

    Choosing a less-qualified candidate because of some demographic they are a part of would demonstrate a kind of managerial competence fundamentally different from that which would promote long term health and growth of a company.  I think it would be the fiduciary obligation to Apple's shareholders for their upper management to select candidates based on skill and experience and entirely regardless of race, gender, or ethnicity.

     

    That said, I think it makes total sense to encourage minorities to apply.  If minority candidates who wouldn't otherwise apply for positions without Apple's specific encouragement/efforts do so, and those candidates are better than the rest of the pool, Apple gets a better person on board while increasing their diversity, scoring a PR win for doing so.  It's strategic on both counts, and I can't help but think that many of the top brass at Apple really do want to conscientiously avoid bias in hiring (which is commendable for any business).  Once the applicant pool is final, of course it should be on merit from there on out.

     

    Affirmative action type measures are a whole other (and, at least from some, a well-intentioned but fundamentally flawed) matter.

  • Reply 11 of 49
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    It's a human right to be a CEO? Where do I sign up? I won't even need a corner office, although a private bathroom would be kind of nice.

    Honestly, if I was a CEO, anyone demanding information form my company, and it wasn't SEC or other regulatory public required info, would be told to go f*** themselves sideways.

    Take Apple private, Cook, and tell all the yahoos, including Wall Street and it's village idiot pundits, where to stick it all.
    I have a feeling Cook isn't doing this because he feels pressured or forced to. Just like we get updates on supply chain and the environment I suspect we'll soon get public updates on diversity. This is Tim Cook's Apple.
  • Reply 12 of 49
    Redacted
  • Reply 13 of 49
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,508moderator
    slurpy wrote: »
    What are these "diversity" numbers supposed to show? Should Apple have an even break-down of all minority groups represented in their total workforce #s, as well as ethnicities, ages, sexes, reglious backgrounds, etc to prove that they support "diversity"?

    It could stand as evidence for board representation. If their workforce is 20% women, they don't need 50% of the board to be women.

    Whatever way the numbers turn out, I think they should consider Salma Hayek for the board:

    1000

    Female and Mexican, that's two groups in one. I'm sure she's good with computers and things to qualify for the board.
  • Reply 14 of 49
    rs9rs9 Posts: 68member
    I think many of you here are missing the point. Now only are most of Citizens of the United States of America, but we are also citizens of Earth. If Apple is to continue to flourish; it needs to understand World Cultures. Here are to simple example and there are many: Sav-Ons Drugs changed their name to Osco - in Spanish it means Nauseous. The Chevy Nova failed in Latin America. In Spanish No va may mean it doesn't run, doesn't move, etc.

    Bottom line the more Multi-Cultural Apple becomes the better it can market its products.

    Regarding Jesse Jackson, Apple just made Dr. Dre a billionaire. Maybe Dr. Dre should donate some $$$ to Jesse Jackson's cause, which I fully support.
  • Reply 15 of 49

    ...and the walls come tumblin' down...

  • Reply 16 of 49
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,316member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jinglesthula View Post

     

     

    Choosing a less-qualified candidate because of some demographic they are a part of would demonstrate a kind of managerial competence fundamentally different from that which would promote long term health and growth of a company.  I think it would be the fiduciary obligation to Apple's shareholders for their upper management to select candidates based on skill and experience and entirely regardless of race, gender, or ethnicity.

     

    That said, I think it makes total sense to encourage minorities to apply.  If minority candidates who wouldn't otherwise apply for positions without Apple's specific encouragement/efforts do so, and those candidates are better than the rest of the pool, Apple gets a better person on board while increasing their diversity, scoring a PR win for doing so.  It's strategic on both counts, and I can't help but think that many of the top brass at Apple really do want to conscientiously avoid bias in hiring (which is commendable for any business).  Once the applicant pool is final, of course it should be on merit from there on out.

     

    Affirmative action type measures are a whole other (and, at least from some, a well-intentioned but fundamentally flawed) matter.


     

    Excellent post. 

  • Reply 17 of 49
    mcdavemcdave Posts: 1,691member
    "actively [seek] out highly qualified women and individuals from minority groups"

    This is discrimination, are Apple being accused of not being racist/genderist enough?

    Diversity can't be forced, or assumed or it becomes the thing it accuses others of being.
  • Reply 18 of 49
    lord amhranlord amhran Posts: 902member
    Why do I get the feeleing that Jesse "Never Misses An Opportunity To Play The Race Card" Jackson'll use this report to extort, I mean gain concessions, from Apple?
  • Reply 19 of 49
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,408member

    Jesse Jackson is akin to a blackmailer, IMO. He should take care of his own house before he criticizes others.

  • Reply 20 of 49
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member

    Screw these professional blackmailers and vile racists!

     

    Apple shouldn't release anything at all to these groups.

     

    What's next, is Apple going to hand over data to the KKK and the Nazis if they request it?

     

    What a bunch of garbage.

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