Although some startups may have a great deal of potential to become wealthy companies, funding is a pressing issue many of them face. Venture capital investing is a way for startups to gain the funds they need to progress in a competitive industry. However, in recent times, it seems as if there is a hidden cost to obtain venture capital.
Sexual harassment from corporate officials, especially in the tech industry, have been exposed in recent days, and the women involved in these cases wish to bring this issue to the attention of the general public. Several individuals have stepped down from their respective positions due to sexual harassment accusations. Dave McClure of 500 Startups is just one example. According to the technology news site, The Information, six women have accused Binary Capital partner, Justin Caldbeck, of making inappropriate sexual advances when the women sought funding or guidance on their own businesses. Since these allegations, Caldbeck’s venture capital firm has received harsh backlash and was on the verge of collapse.
These venture capital scandals have questioned the integrity of management within the tech industry, and the inequality of gender treatment in the workplace. Through social media, women have found a voice and outlet to share their experiences.
Entrepreneur Sarah Kunst asserted, “I hope the industry continues to support women who speak up and shun men who do these things.” This statement was in reference to when she discussed a possible job at 500 Startups in 2014 where she states she received a message at 4 in the morning from McClure on Twitter which read, “I was getting confused figuring out whether to hire you or hit on you.”
The lack of appropriate behavior within tech companies has created a negative stigma of leadership within these companies. The actions of these individuals have called for the questioning of equality in the workplace and the need for these problems involving sexual harassment to be addressed.
Mohammad Sultani for TechFunnel.com