It’s never an easy thing to figure out how to diversify your writing staff in the new age of multiculturalism. From finding talent, to promoting the most qualified, toeing the line of being political correct and alienating ethnic and gender groups can be tough.
And then, there’s the Wall Street Journal.
After reading the Huffington Post article on the issues ranging in the WSJ writing staff, I think it’s fair to say that this news outlet needs a major leadership shakeup. “Earlier this month, a half-dozen female reporters at the outlet emailed Editor-in-Chief Gerard Baker and his deputy Matt Murray on behalf of nearly 200 staffers, expressing their growing frustration. The email, obtained by HuffPost, pointedly notes that the leadership hasn’t meaningfully addressed two related issues: the significant pay gap between men and women, and the lack of racial diversity.”
While the fact 200 staffers felt they needed to come together and write a scathing letter to get the Editor’s attention is bad, the situation in WSJ actually gets worse. Below are a few comments from current and former WSJ staffers obtained through the HuffPost article:
- “Diversity is such an issue at the Journal, I’ve heard people call it White Castle,” said the female reporter. “There’s frustration [they’re] not taking this seriously.”
- “People are scared,” said one female reporter who saw the most recent email. “There’s frustration and concern this isn’t being taken seriously.”
Finally, if you’re wondering what the exact climate is within the company, take a look at this devastating example:
“I always heard about women getting paid significantly less than men, but I didn’t think about it on a personal level until it happened to me,” said a former Wall Street Journal staffer who left the paper in 2015. After four years at the Journal, this staffer learned that a man sitting next to her, with the same level of experience and job title, was making $30,000 more a year than she was. He’d been hired relatively recently. When she raised the issue with her boss, she was told that because her male colleague was an “external hire,” they had to pay more to poach him. “They were trying to convince him to join,” she explained. The female staffer got a 2 percent raise. “That didn’t come close to closing the gap,” she said. “I was very angry.” Her colleague ended up getting promoted and landing a new title a few weeks after she complained.
The WSJ needs a change otherwise they will continue to lose top diverse talent.