Founder of Hustle Crew, NonTechTech. Head of Maker Outreach at Product Hunt and Co-Host Techish podcast.
Born in Washington DC to Nigerian and Filipina parents, Abadesi spent her childhood in East Africa before moving to the UK for secondary school. She graduated from the London School of Economics in 2009 and wrote for the Financial Times before joining London’s tech scene. Prior to her current roles she worked in growth roles at Amazon, HotelTonight and Groupon where she was promoted after er first 8 months and helped scale her department 5X. In 2016 she published her careers advice book, Dream Big Hustle Hard: A Millennial Woman’s Guide to Success in Tech.
What does diversity mean to you?
Diversity to me is all about representation. I have no interest in living in a future where one homogenous group of people make all the key decisions to inform the technology we use. Where one homogenous group of people source the data sets and design the algorithms for AI that affects all of our lives. Diversity is achieved when a group, like a company team, is representative of the society it build products for. Diversity is about having a variety of voices in the room, and at the table when important decisions are being made. Diversity is a celebration of differences, an acknowledgement that we reach greater heights when we take into account a multitude of perspectives.
How can we build more inclusive communities?
To build more inclusive communities you must gain insight and input from the diverse identities you want to include. Start by thinking about how much you value this, and how much resource you have to invest in building more inclusive communities. From there, be as transparent as possible when reaching out to grassroots communities, groups and thought leaders across the range of identities you want to include. Like any other economic transaction – be prepared to compensate people for their time, effort and suggestions. Don’t assume they want to volunteer their time to help you.
What is your advice to a young person starting their career or entrepreneurial journey?
The most important thing to be able to demonstrate at the beginning of your career — before you have a wealth of experience or a specialty — is that you can work hard and deliver on what you have been assigned to do. The ability to work hard is often over looked as a skill, but its one that will really open doors for you if you display your ability. At the start of your career focus on responsibilities you’ve been given and excel in them. Make life for your boss easy – solve problems, execute tasks – work hard and be known for working hard and getting things done very well. Once you prove yourself as a hard worker who is diligent and reliable people will trust you with bigger opportun