Editor’s Note: This blog is about competitive advantage with an emphasis on business and technology, so this post might seem a bit out of place, but if you’re new, you should know this is not the first time I’ve written about race, gender, or culture, and it won’t be the last. Ignore these issues at your own peril.

It’s been a hell of a month.

First, there was a 10 page memo that went viral authored by a (now former) Google engineer named James Damore about what he saw as Google’s liberal bias, where he implied that biological differences between men and women might explain why there’s a 4 to 1 ratio of men vs women on the technical staff at Google. Continue reading

This summer, the meme #StarringJohnCho made waves through the media landscape. Dozens of movie posters were modified to portray Korean-American actor John Cho as the leading character and these images were shared widely across Facebook and Twitter. From James Bond to Jurassic Park to The Martian to 500 Days of Summer, Cho seemed like he could be the perfect fit for any Hollywood blockbuster. Continue reading

Note: While I don’t expect to be writing about these topics frequently, I felt compelled to share some thoughts in light of not just recent events but the many related things that have been happening over the last few years. These are my opinions and do not represent my employer or anyone else — Jason

The events of the last week have been horrifying, infuriating, and deeply saddening.

Two black men, Alton Sterling, and Philando Castile, have been shot dead by police officers. Men who were not resisting arrest, not posing a threat, and who should not be dead. Their final, awful moments, filmed on mobile phones, have been seen millions times. Then, during what was otherwise a peaceful protest in Dallas, five white police officers were shot and killed by a gunman who appears to have been motivated by his frustrations with how black people are treated by the police. My heart goes out to all of these victims and their families.

Where do we go from here? I don’t see any easy answers. Continue reading

Note:  I wrote up the results of the 2015 Asian American Man study on Medium.com, where it’s been read by over 70k people. National Journal, an Atlantic Media’s publication, covered the study in Asian Americans Feel Held Back at Work by Stereotypes.

Today we’re going to talk about a phrase. It’s a phrase you might use innocuously and infrequently, but one that many Asian Americans hear on a weekly if not daily basis, and can come across as unfriendly, even alienating.

That phrase is “Where are you from?” Continue reading

I didn’t really think much about how my own race/ethnicity affected my life until 2011, when I read the ludicrously long piece in New York Magazine. It was called Paper Tigers, with the subtitle: “What happens to all the Asian-American overachievers when the test-taking ends?” and it covered issues I had discussed occasionally with friends but rarely saw elsewhere.

Questions like how come Asians are rarely in leadership positions despite being “so smart”? Or is it possible to maintain traditional Asian values like being humble in a loud, show-off-to-get-ahead world? Or why the hell was dating so damn hard? Continue reading