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Aging Out in the Tech Industry: Experience Need Not Apply

Aging Out in the Tech Industry: Experience Need Not Apply

We see the stories every day, both explicitly and implicitly: “The tech industry is a young persons game.” But hasn’t it always been so. Back in the 1990s, when the Web was becoming a “thing,” I used to joke that my generation had to invent the Web because all of the good creative and development jobs were already taken by the previous generation. Now, those words come back to haunt me as I see more and more discrimination against perfectly qualified applicants; their only disqualification seems to be that they have years of experience. Too many years.

In this session I will explore the uncomfortable but vital topic of how ageism is an unspoken factor in hiring and advancement in the tech industry, and how it becomes a negative multiplier when combined with sexism and racism, further preventing diversity in a homogeneous profession.

Jason CranfordTeague

September 21, 2017
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  1. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE www.cranfordteague.com AGING OUT

    IN THE TECH INDUSTRY Experience Need Not Apply
  2. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 The ADEA prohibits employment discrimination against persons 40 years of age or older. http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/statutes/adea.cfm
  3. You are too old. — No Recruiter, Ever “ CRANFORDTEAGUE

    Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  4. They want someone more junior. — Anonymous Recruiter “ CRANFORDTEAGUE

    Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  5. They want someone more junior. — Anonymous Recruiter “ CRANFORDTEAGUE

    Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY i.e. You are too old
  6. This is not a good culture fit for you. —

    Anonymous Recruiter “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  7. This is not a good culture fit for you. —

    Anonymous Recruiter “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY i.e. You are too old for our young culture.
  8. Your rate is too high. — Anonymous Recruiter “ CRANFORDTEAGUE

    Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  9. Your rate is too high. — Anonymous Recruiter “ CRANFORDTEAGUE

    Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY i.e. You cost too much because you are too old.
  10. The balance in your workflow is off. — Anonymous Recruiter

    “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  11. The balance in your workflow is off. — Anonymous Recruiter

    “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY i.e. You’ve had too many jobs because you are so old.
  12. You are too much horse power 
 for this job!

    — Anonymous Recruiter “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  13. You are too much horse power 
 for this job!

    — Anonymous Recruiter “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY i.e You have too much experience because you are so f***ing old!
  14. “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT

    IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  15. Kids today! — Socrates “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague

    | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  16. The children now love luxury; they have bad manners, contempt

    for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise. — Socrates? “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  17. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY How old is “OLD”?
  18. 20 or Over 30 or Over 40 or Over 50

    or Over 60 or Over CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY PREDICTION: Less than ¼ over 40 Hands Up
  19. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY I am a white male
  20. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Tech industry v. overall private industry (2014) 0 0.175 0.35 0.525 0.7 White Asian Americans African Americans Hispanic 8% 7.4% 14% 68.5% 13.9% 14.4% 5.8% 63.5% Overall Tech U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission EEOC Diversity In High Tech https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/statistics/reports/hightech/
  21. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Tech industry v. overall private industry (2014) Overall Tech 0% 25% 50% 75% 100% 36% 48% 64% 52% Men Woman EEOC Diversity In High Tech https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/statistics/reports/hightech/ U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
  22. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY FACT: People like hiring people like themselves. I.E. — People they want to hang out with.
  23. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY American Sociological Association Employers Often More Interested in Hiring Potential Playmates Than the Very Best Candidates http://www.asanet.org/documents/press/pdfs/ASR_December2012_Lauren_Rivera_News_Release.pdf
  24. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY I am NOT young
  25. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY EEO-1 reports filed by employers with more than 100 employees provide data based on race, color, sex and national origin, but do not report data on age or disability. EEOC Diversity In High Tech https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/statistics/reports/hightech/ U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
  26. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY We are aware that both groups are underrepresented in the tech workforce, suggesting the need for research to understand the causes and potential solutions. EEOC Diversity In High Tech https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/statistics/reports/hightech/ U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
  27. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY The average developer is 28 years old, according to data from Stack Overflow:
  28. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY
  29. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY OVER 40
  30. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY What you want to look like 
 after 40…
  31. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY What you probably look like after 40…
  32. Never trust anyone over 30! — Hippies, circa 1968 “

    CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  33. Never trust anyone over 25! — Corey Doctorow, “Little Brother”

    “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  34. Never trust anyone 12 or older! — Jason Cranford Teague,

    Age 10 “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  35. In the tech world, gray hair and experience are really

    overrated. — Brian Halligan, CEO HubSpot “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  36. Young people are just smarter. — Mark Zuckerberg, CEO Facebook

    “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  37. CRANFORDTEAGUE HOW IS AGEISM RATIONALIZED? Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague |

    #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  38. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Write down 5 things you associate with older workers.
  39. Old age and treachery will always beat youth and exuberance.

    — David Mamet “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  40. YOU COST TOO MUCH AGEISM RATIONALIZATION CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague

    @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  41. YOU DON’T KNOW THE LATEST TECH AGEISM RATIONALIZATION CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason

    Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  42. YOUR SKILLS ARE OUT OF DATE AGEISM RATIONALIZATION CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason

    Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  43. YOU WON’T PUT IN THE HOURS AGEISM RATIONALIZATION CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason

    Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  44. YOU DON’T KNOW THE “SECRET LANGUAGE” AGEISM RATIONALIZATION CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason

    Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  45. YOU CAN’T INNOVATE AT YOUR AGE AGEISM RATIONALIZATION CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason

    Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  46. YOU WILL LEAVE WHEN SOMETHING BETTER COMES ALONG AGEISM RATIONALIZATION

    CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  47. YOU’RE NOT HUNGRY ENOUGH FOR SUCCESS AGEISM RATIONALIZATION CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason

    Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  48. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Anything Else?
  49. CRANFORDTEAGUE WHAT IS EXPERIENCE WORTH? Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague |

    #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  50. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Write down 5 things you associate with experience.
  51. Everyone is born creative, but it is educated out of

    us at school. — Tham Khai Meng, Creative Officer, Ogilvy & Mather “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  52. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY
  53. I would rather entrust the lowering of a 
 life-boat

    in mid-Atlantic to a sail-trained octogenarian than to a young sea technician who is competently trained in the modern way but has never been sprayed by salt water. — Lawrence Holt “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  54. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY enterprise, tenacity, and compassion
  55. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/08/heres-why-your-attitude-is-more-important-than-your-intelligence
  56. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Of the 5 things you wrote down, 
 which would you associate with a growth mindset?
  57. CRANFORDTEAGUE WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT AGEISM? Jason Cranford Teague

    @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  58. Those who can, do. Those who CAN’T, teach. — George

    Bernard Shaw “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  59. What an old bastard! CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague |

    #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  60. Those who can, DO. Those who can do it well,

    TEACH! Those who can’t, become CRITICS! — Me “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  61. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Write down 5 things OLDER people 
 could teach 
 YOUNG people.
  62. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Write down 5 things YOUNG people 
 could teach 
 OLDER people.
  63. CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN

    THE TECH INDUSTRY Write down 
 5WAYS 
 YOUNGER & OLDER people 
 could teach
 EACH OTHER
  64. Time is an Illusion. Lunchtime doubly so. — Douglas Adams

    The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy “ CRANFORDTEAGUE Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism AGING OUT IN THE TECH INDUSTRY
  65. Thanks Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #DIGM233 CREATIVE CONCEPT DESIGN

  66. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #DIGM233 CREATIVE CONCEPT DESIGN JASON

    CRANFORD TEAGUE jason@cranforteague.com 541.600.4422 @JasonCT | @CranfordTeague
  67. Jason Cranford Teague @CranfordTeague | #edui_ageism CRANFORDTEAGUE www.cranfordteague.com AGING OUT

    IN THE TECH INDUSTRY Experience Need Not Apply