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Diversity in the world of CTOs

Over the last couple of years, I’ve received requests for referrals of non-male devs, especially CTOs as of late.

There’s an extreme shortage of CTOs, especially non-males, and that companies (mainly startups or small corporates) are trying to be diverse, and I’m trying to not be cynical…

Hailee Steinfeld Sigh

πŸ‘‰ Are they looking for token non-male tech hire on c-suite team for investment/funding reasons?

πŸ‘‰ Are they cheaping out on salary? (CTOs are not cheap, they are at the high price bracket for a reason)

I was wondering, how many non-male CTOs do I know (past & present role)? Initial answer, head to my Linkedin app and did a search within my 1st level connections, and I have a broad network. I was shocked that even with my activities and connections in tech, especially around diversity, the CTOs that are non-male on my list are dismal.

14 out of 105 😱

πŸ€” So how did you fare if you checked your LinkedIn profile and look for CTOs (past and present roles) in your 1st level connections? Shocking, isn't it?

Sad Oh No GIF By Apple TV<br>

I know it's not a surprise but for myself, I didn't think it was going to be bad!

πŸ‘‰ Question… how to find more CTOs?

πŸ‘‰ Another question… how to find potential future CTOs?

If you are looking for a CTO, be prepared to have deep pockets, and if you can’t afford a full-time CTO, have you considered hiring them part-time?
Would that be reasonable and will that fit within your budget, especially if you are a startup or a small company? Are you offering them equity?


... are you looking for a developer instead? This would be a completely different requirement to a CTO.

Dickinson Anna Baryshnikov GIF By Apple TV

Well? I love to hear your thoughts, if you are

  • a company looking to hire a CTO
  • a CTO looking for next gig (love to hear from someone who is experienced as a CTO & what is expected of being one)
  • a senior dev looking into becoming a CTO, what does it take & mean to become one?
  • what is the bar of entry to become a CTO?

And any helpful advice and information to contribute to the conversation.

But do think about what remuneration you are offering the candidate as potential CTO for your company? Understand the market rate and be realistic and fair.

Hailee Steinfeld Finger Guns GIF By Apple TV

And most of all, BE HONEST on what you are looking for & offering.

Top comments (1)

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whykay πŸ‘©πŸ»β€πŸ’»πŸˆπŸ³οΈβ€πŸŒˆ (she/her)

130+ women CTOs in Europe: the complete list