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Marne Levine attends a panel discussion in New York. Photo: J. Kempin/Getty Images

An all-male founding team is no excuse for excluding women — they can find other female senior employees to include in their decision-making, Instagram COO Marne Levine said at SXSW.

Why it matters: Women still make up a small portion of the tech workforce, as well as leadership positions in business and other industries. That also means a lack of diversity in perspectives and ideas, which has been shown to make for better-run businesses.

It’s really important to make sure that there are ways to elevate other voices... That means going out of rank and bringing people into those conversations. We looked at different ways, other just going by seniority.
— Marne Levine

Differences in how men and women perceive each other and the issues is also important:

  • "What is different is the perception of women asking for promotions and raises” compared to when men do it, said Airbnb COO Belinda Johnson.
  • If there’s a perception among men that the problem of gender parity or sexism is fixed, then they won’t continue to make efforts, said Axios EVP Evan Ryan of men's tendency to believe there is equality in the workplace.

As for some men's apprehension in being around female colleagues alone, "my attitude is 'take on her on the business trip, just don’t go up to her room and harass her,'” said former President Obama senior advisor Valerie Jarrett.

The story has been updated with additional quotes.

Go deeper

Justice Department drops insider trading inquiry against Sen. Richard Burr

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) walking through the Senate Subway in the U.S. Capitol in December 2020. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

The Department of Justice told Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) on Tuesday that it will not move forward with insider trading charges against him.

Why it matters: The decision, first reported by the New York Times, effectively ends the DOJ's investigation into the senator's stock sell-off that occurred after multiple lawmakers were briefed about the coronavirus' potential economic toll. Burr subsequently stepped down as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Netflix tops 200 million global subscribers

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Netflix said that it added another 8.5 million global subscribers last quarter, bringing its total number of paid subscribers globally to more than 200 million.

The big picture: Positive fourth-quarter results show Netflix's resiliency, despite increased competition and pandemic-related production headwinds.

Janet Yellen plays down debt, tax hike concerns in confirmation hearing

Treasury Secretary nominee Janet Yellen at an event in December. Photo: Alex Wong via Getty Images

Janet Yellen, Biden's pick to lead the Treasury Department, pushed back against two key concerns from Republican senators at her confirmation hearing on Tuesday: the country's debt and the incoming administration's plans to eventually raise taxes.

Driving the news: Yellen — who's expected to win confirmation — said spending big now will prevent the U.S. from having to dig out of a deeper hole later. She also said the Biden administration's priority right now is coronavirus relief, not raising taxes.