Elon Musk is considering reviewing employee salaries at SpaceX to ensure that women and men are paid fairly, the chief executive and founder said at a dinner at a private residence in Beverly Hills last Thursday.
Dubbed The Dinner for Equality and co-hosted by actress Patricia Arquette and Marc Benioff, chief executive of the software company Salesforce, the event brought together women’s activists, chief executives and some Hollywood A-listers to discuss how to advance the cause for women’s rights at both the policy and corporate level.
The pay gap between men and women has drawn renewed attention in the business world over the past year or so, particularly since Benioff announced publicly last year that he would audit employee salaries and then spent $3 million to correct the internal gap at Salesforce.
“It is scary for a CEO” to look at pay by gender, Benioff told attendees. You’re not sure what you’re going to find, he said. “It can go sideways fast.”
2011 was a good year for the Australian economy. Markets were booming and startups were getting acknowledged for their economic longevity and relevance to the strategic growth of the nation. It was also the year I became an angel investor who funded women in tech startups.
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Then, only 16% of tech entrepreneurs were women. Therefore it came as no surprise that my foray into the male dominated angel investment space was met with scepticism. Without a strong track record of women in tech, much less tech startups, many did not see future value.
It wasn’t just gender that was the issue. The very concept of angel investment, seen as too risky; it was not something everyone got on board with in 2011. In stark contrast, 2015 saw almost every big bank, national business icons like James Packer, and even the super funds start investing in startups.