// by Ashira Gobrin, Wave's SVP People & Culture //
The foundation of our Diversity and Inclusion philosophy at Wave is to build a culture of respect in our workplace. We have no tolerance for what we refer to as “competent jerks” no matter how good they are at what they do. “Uncompromising Integrity” is one of our core values so we work hard to ensure that is real in our behaviours and not just writing on the wall.
There are many wonderful things that we do very well, others where we are still learning to do better and we put a lot of emphasis on ensuring we keep learning. Our employees are key to everything we do and everything we achieve, and we respect and admire each and every one of them greatly. We believe that a diverse and inclusive culture is a priority for a winning team — you don't get innovation without diversity — so we feel privileged to be headquartered in Canada — specifically in Toronto where there is so much diversity to take advantage of. But Diversity is not only about the way we look, it is also about the way we see. If we have a group of people who think differently, they will very likely look differently too. To create a culture that encourages diversity of thought, we need to be truly inclusive.
“Diversity at Wave is refreshing, deep and frequently translates into a wide range of creative thinking, springing from the vast array of backgrounds that people at Wave come from. The inclusiveness leads to rigorous and respectful conversations across all levels of the organization and creates a powerful dynamic that challenges people to learn, grow and participate fully,” says Ideshini Naidoo, SVP Information Technology at Wave who recently joined us from South Africa to lead our Engineering, Security and Project Management teams.
We try to make sure that every employee is looked after, cared for and invested in. Steven Ingram, Data Engineering Manager at Wave recently sent us this note: “I am at a conference where for the first time in a long time I realize that the artwork on my skin is noticeably off-putting for some. My choices have made me "non-traditional" in a sense, which is sometimes very isolating for me. Not once since I've started at Wave has anyone ever made me feel awkward or out of place. I am thankful for the environment I work in, which allows me to fully participate while being the very best version of myself in the most authentic way.”
Our CEO, Kirk Simpson, has put a sharp focus on creating a culture at Wave that is built on a foundation of respect for each other. This has resulted in a very inclusive culture and it shows with an increase in diversity as we grow. In a recent discussion on the topic, Kirk stated: “As we make key hires for Wave, our organization is looking far more diverse from top to bottom and we are finding strength from it. Of course, the landscape has changed dramatically in terms of key thought leaders coming forward and pushing the tech community hard to fix our combined, raw, unacceptable ineptitude in this area.”
This week we are proud to announce that Wave has been named to the 2018 list of Best Workplaces for Inclusion. We received this honour after a thorough and independent analysis conducted by Great Place to Work®. The list of the 25 Best Workplaces for Inclusion is based on direct feedback from employees of the hundreds of organizations that were surveyed by Great Place to Work. The data has a 90% confidence and a plus or minus 5% margin of error. For eligibility, at least 90% of employees must agree they are treated fairly regardless of personal characteristics (such as gender, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation). GPTW determined the BEST based on employee responses to inclusion-related Trust Index statements and the organization’s workplaces programs and practices that support inclusion.