I've been using WSO for 5+ years and I think the anti-diversity rhetoric has gotten so much worse

First of all, I don't support diversity recruiting. I think there are plenty of things that are completely unfair about it. I am non-diverse myself. I think there are some forms of diversity recruiting initiatives out there that shouldn't exist.
But god damn, every other post I see is someone whining about diversity. And even on posts that are not about diversity, some prospect finds a way to bring diversity up and blame it for all their problems in a tangentially related manner. It wasn't like this 5 years ago. It really wasn't. So what changed?
Some of the posts are just hilariously bad. A kid talking about how a BofA MD telling him not to apply because they're only taking diverse candidates? I promise there's white analysts at BofA dude. Many of you want to become investors. Diversity recruiting sucks, but it isn't the cause of all your problems. If you're too blind to see that, you honestly don't have the judgement you need to work in the investment industry.

 

It’s like everything has amped up for some reason. Two things I’ve noticed on several platforms: hatred and racism towards south Asians (referred incorrectly as Indians by Americans) increasing so much and the diversity hire rhetoric.

What’s funny is that the likelihood of them getting in low anyway. With and without diversity hires, they most likely wouldn’t be getting in if all they can do is blame diversity hires. Realistically speaking, if you can’t get in, you most likely wouldn’t have even without diversity hires and that’s a harsh truth that none of them want to listen to.

 

I agree, the content of diversity superdays I have heard about are complete jokes. It’s not fair but as a candidate you can’t control it and just got to move on.

 
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In all seriousness, to fill in the gap for the boomers - the DEI initiatives and overall diversity obsession on campuses (in recent years) have gotten out of hand. This is and always will be a touchy subject. If you force this on people with increasing pressure over time, you cannot expect people not to retaliate. 

Many of us are tired of talking about George Floyd. Many of us are tired of sharing our pronouns. Many of us are tired of discussing the "oppressive" patriarchy. Etc. Etc. Etc. This gets annoying over time.

Look at any college campus right now regarding the Israel-Palestine conflict. College campuses are a hotbed for extreme leftist ideologies. Many normal people get tired of eating shit sandwiches every day and we lash out.

 
Controversial

Aww poor little, your life is so difficult because of all this George Floyd controversy. Gee, you almost feel as bad as your own neck is being crushed with DEI, don't you?

No, just shut up and count your blessings, entitled, ingrate shit. Your life has been so much easier, in reality.

 

if you’re talking about George Floyd or Palestine-Israel conflict in your daily life you need to seek help or log off. This is a popular topic online and in college campuses for obvious reasons but there’s no reason why it should be affecting anybody this badly in daily life… nobody is ever talking about these things irl 

 

Okay. So, how exactly do we make a play on this secular trend, and is it already priced in?

 
  1. the bofa thing is true 2. it was for a soph summer internship, obviously not junior 3. he got the offer thanks to the MD strong arming HR. 4. diversity recruiting has gotten a lot worse in the past 5 years hence more complaining about it 5. At a BB so don’t say I’m coping
 

Hiring should be merit based, not based on DISCRIMINATORY factors candidates cannot change (ie. Skin color or sex) ok maybe I can change the latter 

 

I think this is overblown. I don't think people recruiting realize how interchangeable they are coming straight out school as an incoming intern/analyst. If you can demonstrate that you're genuinely interested, if you can pass the model test, then slight GPA differences or the fact that you're not in the student investment club doesn't matter. What matters becomes more: are you easy to get along with, are you interesting. You're not providing never-before-seen value on day one. And if you're insufferable, I won't want to work with you. Candidly if some of the complaining on this board reflects how the posters act in person, then I get why they were dinged.

Now, I'll always speak out against truly low quality candidates that are pushed forward for diversity reasons. Things like not being able to do a model test, or not being able to string together sentences about what you're interviewing for. But after working on recruiting 3 years on the banking side and 3 years on the PE side, I can probably count on one hand these cases. I think the discussions around the topic are more exaggerated than the actual instances of it happening, which makes it all the more draining.

 

And if you're insufferable, I won't want to work with you. Candidly if some of the complaining on this board reflects how the posters act in person, then I get why they were dinged.

Absolutely. 

Commercial Real Estate Developer
 

I think your second paragraph includes the point that's being missed by the people on the forum - that being that cases where diversity candidates can't also do what non-diversity candidates can are ridiculously rare.

 

It's gotten more prevalent because the diversity hiring has gotten more absurd.

Started in BB IB 5+ years ago and it's never been as bad. I've personally been told it doesn't matter if an intern was useless because that intern was a woman. I've been called by recruiters / PE funds for reference checks and recommendations and told that they aren't going to be interviewing anyone that isn't a diversity hire.

It's a joke. This is someone's career. When you get skipped over despite being better than someone else just so some HR manager can meet a gender metric then I think you've got a right to complain about it.

I'm also sick of analysts that are crap at their jobs and don't want to work hard who only got the job because they meet some DEI metric. 

Perhaps most importantly, these bullshit initiatives punish the female and non-white candidates who actually deserve to be there. Because everyone assumes it's a token hire who's going to suck.

 

Accurate.  Even at our little portco's (companies with less than 1,000 employees) the HR folks are telling me diversity hiring, diversity training, etc etc are critical to our success.  These beliefs have become institutionalized and professionalized.  Even people at small companies will go to some conference where they're told that DEI is the future and they better get on board.

When things get pushed that hard, the backlash can also be sudden and swift.  And that's what I think we're seeing now.  

 

DEI is trash. 20% of my groups analysts are worse than our worst mba associate- and you know none of them are white or asian men. Forces the other 80% of competent analysts to work longer hours on more projects

 

Because DEI is blatant race-based discrimination being enforced by the same people that always cry about how bad racism is and has only become more prominently shoved down people's throats as time has gone on. If you're too blind to see that, you honestly don't have the judgement you need to work in the investment industry.

"The obedient always think of themselves as virtuous rather than cowardly" - Robert A. Wilson | "If you don't have any enemies in life you have never stood up for anything" - Winston Churchill | "It's a testament to the sheer belligerence of the profession that people would rather argue about the 'risk-adjusted returns' of using inferior tooth cleaning methods." - kellycriterion
 

Honestly man, we went from a deal boom and the COVID recruiting cycle where every moron with a half pulse had an in, to now, where its slim pickings and people are being booted off their desks.

Given the overhiring and pretty steep decline in the quality of candidates during COVID, not surprised "diversity" is the next scapegoat. You've seen the level of maturity on this site, to nobody's surprise, self awareness and acceptance of one's own failure is secondary to finding a scapegoat. 

 
rabbit

Honestly man, we went from a deal boom and the COVID recruiting cycle where every moron with a half pulse had an in, to now, where its slim pickings and people are being booted off their desks.

Given the overhiring and pretty steep decline in the quality of candidates during COVID, not surprised "diversity" is the next scapegoat. You've seen the level of maturity on this site, to nobody's surprise, self awareness and acceptance of one's own failure is secondary to finding a scapegoat. 

It doesn’t get better with age, I assure you (on finding scapegoats vs self awareness)…

I used to do Asia-Pacific PE (kind of like FoF). Now I do something else but happy to try and answer questions on that stuff.
 

Every day people cry about diversity here and yet I only ever interact with white guys at my job and when speaking to other people in the industry. 

"I'm going to make him an offer he can't refuse."
 
"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee
 

I’ve been using WSO for 10+ years, if not 15+ years, and WSO’s off topic forum mirrors political and cultural shifts in business society at large. 

WSO has always been right-leaning, which makes a lot of sense as Wall Street is too, but when I started posting here, that manifested itself in more of a George W. Bush/Mitt Romney type of way. The topics posted were more fiscal/financial in nature and more small-C conservative.

As the American right wing has shifted from that mindset to more of an aggrieved, aggressive, MAGA approach, so have the posters and posts here. Instead of complaints about marginal tax rates, you get complaints about minorities, talk of conspiracy theories, and other culture war stuff. It all comes down to the media posters consume, what posters hear others say, etc. 

Commercial Real Estate Developer
 
CRE

As the American right wing has shifted from that mindset to more of an aggrieved, aggressive, MAGA approach, so have the posters and posts here. Instead of complaints about marginal tax rates, you get complaints about minorities, talk of conspiracy theories, and other culture war stuff. It all comes down to the media posters consume, what posters hear others say, etc. 

This is one of my biggest problems with MAGA. Despite what they claim, they are playing victim as well.

Vote Republican - then you are a victim of immigrants, China, West and East Coast elites

Vote Democrat - then you are a victim of systematic racism, sexism, capitalsim, etc.

While I like Republican policies, I honestly think the mentality of both parties is the same and based on victimhood and I don't identify with either perspective. The vast majority of my sucesses and failures have been the result of my decisions and I'm ok with that.

 
CRE

I’ve been using WSO for 10+ years, if not 15+ years, and WSO’s off topic forum mirrors political and cultural shifts in business society at large. 

WSO has always been right-leaning, which makes a lot of sense as Wall Street is too, but when I started posting here, that manifested itself in more of a George W. Bush/Mitt Romney type of way. The topics posted were more fiscal/financial in nature and more small-C conservative.

As the American right wing has shifted from that mindset to more of an aggrieved, aggressive, MAGA approach, so have the posters and posts here. Instead of complaints about marginal tax rates, you get complaints about minorities, talk of conspiracy theories, and other culture war stuff. It all comes down to the media posters consume, what posters hear others say, etc. 

Old timer here too, and this nails it. Main reason I don't post anymore and rarely visit.

"I don't know how to explain to you that you should care about other people."
 

Total agree that this spot on. One thing that I think is important to note on is on the “mindset.”

Opinions on race or ethnicities have existed since we were all a bunch of cavemen warring with the neighboring tribe. However, I think that in the last 10-20 years, it has very much been the convention that media coverage on anything race or ethnicity-based was incredibly low, relative to now.

I think your last sentence sums it up perfectly, the advent of the “MAGA” view re-introduced race-centric speech into the media orthodoxy, quite possibly making it THE defining political issue in America today.

 
crabostrich


I think your last sentence sums it up perfectly, the advent of the “MAGA” view re-introduced race-centric speech into the media orthodoxy, quite possibly making it THE defining political issue in America today.

Would really disagree with this completely. The MAGA view is very reactionary. The race stuff was pushed very very hard by the Left. And then naturally, the MAGA crowd started pushing back aggressively, but let's not kid ourselves on who started the topic so aggressively. 

 

Old timer here.....I think that things have improved on WSO since the censorship increased. While this is a constant topic, I'd guess that it's down 30% from a year ago or so.

Also, note that per NY.Monkey's comment above, a lot of this is backlash to DEI being shoved down people's throats. If you try to stifle people's legitimate concerns about these programs even more so, you'll just get even more backlash.

Side comment. A lot of users on here are too young to know this but as someone growing up in the 90s and early 2000s, these discussions happened a lot less often. Affirmative action existed. Some people complained a little bit. DEI was present but not shoved down people's throats and we all somehow lived in harmony with much less tension. All this BS is manufactured chaos from the past 10 years. Don't believe me? See the historical gallup poll on race relations below:

https://news.gallup.com/poll/1687/race-relations.aspx

 
NoEquityResearch

we all someone lived in harmony with much less tension. All this BS is manufactured chaos from the past 10 years.

Applies to things beyond race too, IMO. Politicians, media personalities, and especially randomly ass people online try to be as extreme and divisive as humanly possible just to get noticed. Thoughtful, nuanced perspectives don’t get rage clicks. 

My extended family has atheists, Catholics, protestants, and Jews in it, as well as Asians, white people, and Black people. My coworkers have been far right MAGA conspiracy heads, traditional conservatives, centrists, and liberals. My friends and neighbors have been white, Black, Asian, etc. With very few exceptions, we all understand each others’ differences and yet all still manage to coexist. 

Real life simply isn’t anywhere near as confrontational, angry, or antagonistic as the internet makes it seem. 

Commercial Real Estate Developer
 

It’s gone too far and will continue to unless normal people continue to fight back.

One of my PortCo’s is going through a large integration and I kid you not our HR individual said “we need to be more cognizant of whether individuals are in a protected class before laying them off to avoid lawsuits”.

It’s gone as far to FIRING non-diverse individuals over diverse individuals……

 

There’s something funny about a “non-target zaddy” complaining about diversity hires when they themselves are one. 

Commercial Real Estate Developer
 

The past couple years have been the worst entry level hiring market in over a decade. The worse the market gets, the more people wil rationalize their failures any way they can. For some, this is their first taste of adversity or things not going their way/not being enough. The diversity argument is just a low hanging fruit. Much easier to say that then either a) I am not cut out for it and/or b) I (unluckily) graduated into a hiking cycle that killed deal activity and my potential seat.

 

Generally agree with you, however it’s ignorant to say that this tough hiring market combined with the increased push for diversity in the last 5 years is not driving this increased scrutiny on DEI.

Simple math:
number of seats went down by 25% due to the market, DEI doubled or tripled in share of seats = unhappy individuals with true justification for feeling spurned.

 

I mean, most people who complain about diversity on here are just upset because they can't hack it and it's easier to blame minorities or women on a rather right-leaning forum than it is to acknowledge their own inadequacy.  As I always say, anyone who is complaining about diversity hiring and NOT about the fact that there are still lots of rich white guys getting even more disproportionately hired because their dad knows someone at the bank/firm/whatever doesn't have an argument worth listening to.

That being said, WSO has gotten way way way better about this over the last few years.  The Off Topic Forum was basically a cesspool for neo-Nazis and misogynist trolls for a good long while until the moderation started kicking in.

So yeah, it's a shame that there are so many teenagers who lack self-awareness and want to blame the tiny number of diversity hires (whose only failing is being a diversity hire, no one ever seems to be able to really show why these people are worse at their jobs than anyone else) instead of the huge numbers of privileged white frat bros.  But that's life - bigots exist.  If they didn't, we wouldn't need diversity hiring in the first place, and it's kind of amusing in a sad way that every person who makes an "anti-diversity hiring" post on WSO is so unaware of the fact that they're the problem

 

Disagree, although you are likely right that most of the  the outrage is mostly by the people who believe they have been conned by DEI practices in some way, people in the industry don't seem to disagree (also apparent in this thread)

I have personally seen people who have laughed and said that they don't even know what a DCF is... they were hired to top BB's that people work hard for.

 

Kouhwaii

Disagree, although you are likely right that most of the  the outrage is mostly by the people who believe they have been conned by DEI practices in some way, people in the industry don't seem to disagree (also apparent in this thread)

I have personally seen people who have laughed and said that they don't even know what a DCF is... they were hired to top BB's that people work hard for.

Yeah, I knew some of those folks too when I was on Wall Street.  But here's the thing, they weren't just people who might be considered diversity hires.  In fact, it was more likely to be the rich white kid who owed his job to his dad's connections.  Which is my entire point about people who are complaining about diversity hires, and which I've repeated very often - if diversity hiring was replacing a truly meritocratic system, there might be some justice to calling for it to be scrapped.  But anyone who has spent any time in finance knows that the default isn't and never was "the best qualified gets the job," it was always "the best connected gets the job."  So complaining that a kid from a HBCU got a job "because" of diversity hiring is really just a veiled way of saying "black people shouldn't be in finance," because the person complaining was never getting that spot; it was going to a rich white guy.  And if it is replacing some worthy candidate, then the outrage should be directed not at the diversity hire, but at the equally unqualified rich kid getting hired.  There just isn't a way around this, and every time I point it out on WSO the person who made the initial argument mysteriously disappears or stops responding.

It's also worth pointing out that knowing how to create a DCF model, or even what it is, is hardly meaningful bar to clear.  Like, if that's what your hanging your hat on, then we need to back up and assert some first principles here, because knowing what that is doesn't actually make you any better at your job than someone who doesn't.  It sort of sucks to hear, but just because you were in the finance club and checked all the boxes that are supposed to help you get a job in finance, doesn't actually mean you're any better than the person who didn't and in some cases may have the opposite impact.  I remember modeling bootcamp as an analyst - the guys who could finish theirs 5 seconds faster than the next guy would crow about it for days, but half of them also couldn't type up a grammatically correct email.  The latter is way more valuable than the former, because most banks can teach you the math and Excel stuff, but not basic communication skills

 

Some people obviously overreact to diversity programs. But can you really blame them? It’s beyond infuriating to see people receive special treatment on the basis of identity. This is universally recognized, yet simultaneously universally ignored, in the context of high stakes realms like employment and college admissions. Enough is enough.