Inclusive Innovation: How Colorado Tech Companies Build Teams — and Products — as Diverse as Their Users

July 30, 2019

For businesses today, building a more diverse and inclusive team is about so much more than the optics. It’s about driving innovation and inviting a variety of unique voices into the workplace in order to build a brand that resonates far and wide. 

For businesses that operate on a global scale, diversity and inclusivity become even more critical to long-term success. Building products for a global market — whose users represent a broad range of backgrounds, languages and tech challenges — requires a global perspective that can only be attained by building a diverse, collaborative team that’s not only passionate about the product but also empathetic to the needs of its diverse users.

To learn more about how a company’s global presence impacts its culture, team and products, we talked to two tech companies — with offices here in Colorado and all around the world. 
 

PopSockets global diversity and inclusivity Colorado tech
Photo via PopSockets.

Combining function with self-expression, PopSockets’ collapsible phone grips and stands have become an international staple in smartphone accessories. Director of Poptivism and Corporate Citizenship Jennifer Forman and VP of International Operations Mike De Bell explained how the company’s global presence and diverse team impact both the culture and the products they’re building. 

 

How does your company ensure that your products and services are inclusive to users with a broad range of backgrounds and abilities, and how do those considerations shape the team you’re building?

Forman: We understand that diversity is crucial to PopSockets’ long-term success and make a concerted effort to hire applicants with varied backgrounds and experiences. We actively solicit ideas and innovation from employees — regardless of department or level — and from our customers. Because of that, we’ve been able to capitalize on a wealth of unique experiences and incorporate the needs and wants of hugely varied networks into our products.  From design to functionality, we utilize as many viewpoints as possible to make our decisions and drive our personal and product growth. 

 

We work to blend the diverse local office cultures with our Boulder company culture to get the best of both worlds and further drive our mission of doing good and giving back — one Pop Grip at a time.” 

Tell us a bit about your company's presence around the globe. How does this influence the culture of your company or how you work?

De Bell: We have established a local presence in many countries around the globe — Finland, Japan, Korea, Singapore and Hong Kong, just to name a few. We staff those offices with local talent to ensure solid connections to native culture and social customs. In conjunction with local understanding, we strive to instill our company values and priorities in our remote offices, specifically our passion for giving back in order to make the world a happier place. Through our Poptivism program, we enable anyone, employee or not, to use our products to generate revenue for charities of their choice. We also encourage our foreign offices to develop designs reflective of their culture and, in some cases, to bring those designs to the world stage. 

Additionally, we bring a little bit of international exposure back to our Boulder office through displayed location maps and translations of our company name, including a large neon sign in our main common area that reads ポップソケッツ (PopSockets in Japanese). Overall, we work to blend the diverse local office cultures with our Boulder company culture to get the best of both worlds and further drive our mission of doing good and giving back — one Pop Grip at a time. 

 

CSG global diversity and inclusivity Colorado tech
Photo via CSG.

CSG helps businesses thrive in a dynamic, complex and ever-evolving digital world, offering a connected suite of products and services designed to support revenue management, customer experience, digital monetization and more. Vice President of Global Services John Fendley shared how both employees and customers from around the world work together in close-knit teams and how they’ve adapted their products to meet the diverse and unique needs of its clients.

 

Tell us a bit about your company's presence around the globe. How does this influence the culture of your company or how you work?  

CSG has hundreds of customers across all regions of the world. This global scale requires CSG to employ individuals in dozens of countries, and each country has its own cultural norms and regulations. Any given project may require a team made of multiple cultures and nationalities working virtually or in-person as a close-knit team.

 

Any given project may require a team made of multiple cultures and nationalities working virtually or in-person as a close-knit team.”

How does your company ensure that your products and services are inclusive to users with a broad range of backgrounds and abilities, and how do those considerations shape the team you’re building?  

CSG’s products acknowledge differences in users in multiple ways. One way is language translation of user interfaces and documentation. Another way is product design, which might account for infrastructural differences in a country such as banking and credit resources.  Probably the biggest current global challenge is supporting the broad array of data privacy regulations from country to country.

 

Jobs from companies in this blog20 open jobs
All Jobs
Finance
Data + Analytics
Dev + Engineer
HR + Recruiting
Marketing
Operations
Product
Project Mgmt
Sales
Marketing
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Operations
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Product
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Finance
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Developer
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Finance
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Product
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Finance
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Project Mgmt
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Sales
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Data + Analytics
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Operations
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Finance
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
HR + Recruiting
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Finance
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Developer
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
HR + Recruiting
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Developer
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Operations
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder
Sales
new
PopSockets LLC
Boulder

Colorado startup guides

LOCAL GUIDE
Best Companies to Work for in Denver & Boulder
LOCAL GUIDE
Coolest Tech Offices in Denver & Colorado Tech
LOCAL GUIDE
Best Perks at Colorado Tech Companies
LOCAL GUIDE
Women in Colorado Tech