Episode OneHundredSeventeen

How This Company Achieved a Level of Diversity That Will Blow You Away

Guest: Elizabeth Niemczyk, Senior Manager of Business Development at ShipBob

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About This Episode

A few weeks ago I met someone awesome at an event. During our conversation she shared some of her company’s diversity stats. 

They blew me away.

I’m so impressed by the level of diversity ShipBob has been able to achieve throughout their company, and I wanted to know more about how they did it. 

So, Elizabeth Niemczyk, Senior Manager of Business Development at ShipBob, came on the latest episode of The Sales Engagement podcast to talk about how the company has intentionally focused on achieving diversity.

The crazy stats

So, here are some of the stats Elizabeth shared with me back in Chicago. 

Right now, ShipBob has a 60% dominate female management team.

40% of their sales reps are female. 

Those are pretty amazing statistics.

Here are a couple other stats, not specific to ShipBob, but that will definitely give some color to our conversation.

Males will apply for any job, based on the description, if they’re 60% qualified. 

Women will only apply for that position if they’re 100% qualified. 

So, with those stats in mind, how did ShipBob go about achieving such diversity?

Here are five things they focused on doing to make it happen.

#1: Five for five

ShipBob works with a recruiter in Chicago. 

And they have a rule. 

For every application the recruiter sends for a male candidate, they have to send one for a female candidate, as well. 

So, if the recruiter sends over five male candidates, they have to send five female candidates, as well. 

After that, the best candidate wins.

#2: Focus on coaching

When hiring, ShipBob looks for candidates with drive matched with either a skill or a will. 

Because as long as people are driven, when it comes to skill and will, they can be coached for whichever they’re lacking. 

By thinking about it this way, ShipBob has been able to achieve diversity, not just of gender, but of background, too.

They’ve hired personal assistants, personal trainers, stay-at-home moms, and great sales reps that just want a change of pace. 

And by focusing on coaching, they’re able to diversify, not just in entry level positions, but eventually at the leadership level, as well. 

#3: Be intentional with the job description

Remember that second set of stats from above?

Males will apply for any job, based on the description, if they’re 60% qualified. 

But women will only apply for that position if they’re 100% qualified. 

So, to account for this, ShipBob is very strategic about what they put in their job descriptions. 

They intentionally take things out of the job description that are non-essential, because they don’t want to give qualified candidates the chance to disqualify themselves based on what’s in the job description.

#4: Ask for a number

Think about BDRs. They have KPIs they know they need to hit.

It works the same way when you tap into your network asking for suggestions of candidates who might be a fit for a role within your company. Giving them KPIs gets the job done better. 

Here’s what we mean.

When ShipBob has a position open up and they tap into their network, they ask those resources to send over a specific number of candidates. 

Give people a quantifiable number to hit simply works better.

#5: Focus on ‘why’

The ShipBob sales recruiter is intentional about reaching out to candidates who have been looking at job posts, but haven’t been applying. 

And she’s focused on asking ‘why’.

She wants to know why candidates are applying, or not applying, and why they want the role in general.

Because knowing ‘why’ helps identify and solve problems, leading to a better hiring process for everyone.

Being intentional about diversity has given ShipBob some impressive stats. 

But it’s done so much more than that. 

By focusing on achieving diversity in one area, they’ve been able to gain greater diversity in other areas, too. 

And by bringing together people of different genders, races, backgrounds, and experiences, they’ve built a company that is stronger, better able to creatively solve problems, and making a positive impact in their employees’ lives.

This is an interview with Elizabeth Niemczyk from ShipBob. To hear this episode, and many more like it, you can subscribe to The Sales Engagement Podcast on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or on our website.

About The Podcast

The Sales Engagement podcast is the #1 podcast focused on engaging your customers and prospects in the modern sales era. This show features real-life stories and best practices from revenue leaders doing the job day in and day out, in a casual, radio-like talk show.

Each episode features modern tactics, strategies, hacks, and tips to get the most out of your sales engagement strategy and help you navigate the next generation of sales. You’ll find energetic talks that will provide you with real actionable value around building meaningful connections and creating a better selling experience through authentic conversations that you can measure.

The Sales Engagement podcast is here to help B2B sales leaders, customer success leaders, and marketing leaders innovate and usher in the next era of modern sales by building pipeline, up-selling customers, and ultimately generating more revenue with more efficiency.

Hosted by Joe Vignolo, Senior Content Managing Editor at Outreach, and Mark Kosoglow, Vice President of Sales at Outreach.

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