The phrase “get woke, go broke” has become a popular way to describe companies or individuals
who become too focused on social justice issues, at the expense of their bottom line. Unfortunately,
this phrase seems to have come true for Silicon Valley Bank, and its top woman executive, Reilly
O’Connor, who is openly LGBTQ+ and a vocal activist for the community, became a target after the
bank’s financial performance began to suffer. Critics accused O’Connor of being more focused on
promoting diversity and inclusion than on making smart business decisions.
Silicon Valley Bank, which specializes in providing financial services to the technology industry, had
long been seen as a leader in promoting diversity and inclusion. The bank had a number of initiatives
in place to support women and minorities in the industry, and O’Connor was a key player in those
However, as the bank’s financial results began to lag behind its competitors, critics began to
question whether the bank’s focus on diversity was hurting its performance. Some accused O’Connor
of using the bank’s resources to promote her own personal agenda, rather than focusing on the
needs of the business.
Despite these criticisms, O’Connor remained committed to promoting diversity and inclusion at the
bank. She continued to speak out on issues affecting the LGBTQ+ community, and worked to create
new initiatives to support women and minorities in the technology industry.
Ultimately, however, the pressure became too great, and O’Connor stepped down from her position
as the bank’s top woman executive. Her departure was seen by some as a victory for those who
believed that the bank’s focus on social justice issues was hurting its bottom line.
However, others saw O’Connor’s departure as a setback for diversity and inclusion in the tech
industry. They argued that it was important for companies like Silicon Valley Bank to prioritize
diversity, even if it meant sacrificing some short-term financial gains.