Minority groups who represent diversity checkboxes in tech are often positioned as "part of the club / part of the photo op" and feel included....until they are not. Whether it is a PR, leadership, or internal culture challenge, when the club feels threatened, the club beings to close rank, and the minority member begins to be shut out. Regardless whether the reasons for exclusion seem believable enough, the effect is the same, which reinforces systemic discrimination and modern day exile. And ultimately, these behaviors, when unchecked, impacts a company, not only in their everyday work environment but in their ability to attract future talent and maintain productivity.
So what are the power structures and hierarchies that allows for such dramas to unfold? How can an individual find true allies and safe spaces in such structures? Are there survival strategies when the closing of ranks occur in tech? And how can non-marginalized individuals identify and support from the inside?