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Changemakers: Facebook's Maxine Williams on why employee diversity is a must-have for big tech

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Interview with Maxine Williams, Chief Diversity Officer at Facebook
Interview with Maxine Williams, Chief Diversity Officer at Facebook   -   Copyright  Cannes Lions Live
By Aisling Ní Chúláin and Annabel Murphy

Facebook’s Chief Diversity Officer Maxine Williams believes that "diversity of thought" is critical because it helps build "equal value" products for a global community.

Speaking to Euronews Next during the Changemakers series, Williams said that whilst diversity can mean different things to different companies, at Facebook "diversity of thought" - which is created by bringing people from different backgrounds together - has underpinned Facebook’s success in rolling out products around the world.

"Cognitive diversity is what we seek. That is to have teams where people think differently, because we know from the research that if you think differently, it gives you more advantage," Williams told Euronews Next.

Williams also discussed practical ways in which companies of all sizes can measure and create more diversity in their workplace.

"It's not enough to focus on changing hearts," Williams said.

"You need to put systems in place to limit the operation of bias, so you get the behaviour you’re seeking which by the way, will allow everyone’s potential to be shown and to be leveraged so you can build better products."

  • For more from Maxine Williams, watch the video above or visit Cannes Lions Live to see this episode of Changemakers in full.

The Changemakers series in partnership with Cannes Lions Live and Euronews Next brings one-to-one interviews with female leaders who are rethinking their roles and creating a better future for their industry.

Video editor • Aisling Ní Chúláin