In two short weeks, Storm Ventures will be supporting the launch of Office of the Cloud. This group is the brain child of Dao Jensen of Kaizen Technology Partners, and as a firm we feel humbled and lucky to be partners in the launch. The raison d’etre for the group is simple, we want to help cultivate a community focused on diversity in the cloud computing industry — with a special focus on women in our first event.
There has been a lot of conversation, and quite frankly, a lot of controversy around diversity in the technology sector over the past few years. At Storm, and at Kaizen Technology Partners, we acknowledge the fact that systemic barriers that exist in the technology industry. There’s a lot of good work being done by a number of organizations, but we thought that as a firm we could 1) create a conversation and 2) create a community that can hopefully help individuals transcend barriers.
Office of the Cloud hopes to achieve the two aforementioned points by bringing together diverse members of the technology community. We hope these get-togethers will become forums where open and honest discussion can occur, where individuals can listen to and engage with thought leaders, and opportunities to network.
As everyone in the Silicon Valley can tell you, Cloud computing has rapidly become the new norm. The valley is full of rapid change, and while that’s extremely exciting for those of us at the forefront, immense intentionality has to go into everything we do in the Valley. This is because we’re often laying the groundwork for tomorrows status quo.
Diversity and Inclusion initiatives need to be part of this groundwork. Because if they’re not, they either get forgotten or the “diversity debt” created becomes too hard to come back from — something many of the major tech firms are dealing with today.
Through Office of the Cloud we hope to have conversations about the future of the cloud: the current successes, the as-yet-unrealized potential for innovation, the intended and unintended consequences of this shift in tech infrastructure, and the best path forward for companies to adopt by sharing real world experiences with each other.
Office of the Cloud
We envision Office of the Cloud as a supportive, generative space for diverse leaders from tech organizations to share ideas and learn from each other’s successes and failures their Enterprises have encountered in their pursuits with cloud technology whether public or private cloud. We believe that a cohort of the right smart, successful people can impact the whole industry, amplifying smart new ideas, and help disrupt status quo thinking that limits our current utilization of cloud technology in the Enterprise space.
We also view this rapid technological change as an opportunity for historically under-represented tech professionals to have a voice and a seat at the table. As part of a conversation about the technology of the future, we view this as a chance to think openly about who will lead and work on that innovation. Companies that are invested in gender equity in tech should be members of Office of the Cloud to make sure strong, female and diverse leaders are a key part of the next chapter in cloud technology. We believe the future of the cloud and gender diversity can and should be part of the same goal, and this community is committed to doing the work to make that real.
Our first launch event will be held on September 29th, 2016 at 6pm in Palo Alto. If you’re interested in learning more about Office of the Cloud, or you’re interested in attending our launch, then please visit http://officeofthecloud.com/.
Special thanks to Frederik Groce for helping to collaborate and write this post.
This post was originally posted on the Storm Ventures blog.