Andela Community Code of Conduct

Preamble

A code of conduct establishes minimum expectations for behavior for Andela Community participants. Adopting, and enforcing, a code of conduct can help create a positive social atmosphere for our community.

Andela believes that talent is evenly distributed but opportunity is not. This community aims to bridge talent and opportunity in an EPIC way.

Scope

When and how to use these guidelines

  • Working on Andela Partner teams and projects
  • Representing Andela at public events
  • Collaborating with other Andela Community Members to team, create, problem-solve, learn/teach, and grow
  • Interacting with Andela and other community members on social media or in-person 
  • Participating in Andela related forums, mailing lists, wikis, websites, chat channels (incl. Slack), bugs, group or person-to-person meetings, and Andela related correspondence. 

Our community consists of 

  • Talent and engineers within the Andela network
  • Andela employees, board members, and contractors
  • Partners/Clients with projects on the Andela platform
  • Andela Alumni network
  • Third-party partners, vendors, and sponsors

Our Standards

Andela is dedicated to providing a positive experience for everyone, regardless of

  • Age
  • Ability
  • Background
  • Caste
  • Citizenship
  • Education
  • Ethnicity and/or race
  • Family status
  • Gender
  • Gender identity or expression
  • Geographic location
  • Marital status
  • Nationality
  • Native language
  • Neurodiversity
  • Physical appearance
  • Place of birth
  • Religion or lack thereof
  • Sexual orientation
  • Socio-economic status

Openness, collaboration, and participation are core aspects of our work. We gain strength from diversity and actively seek participation from those who enhance it. These guidelines exist to enable diverse individuals and groups to interact and collaborate to mutual advantage. 

Expected Behavior

This code of conduct presents a summary of the shared values and “common sense” thinking in our community. The basic social ingredients and actions that hold us together are:

Be Considerate

Your actions and work will affect and be used by other people and you, in turn, will depend on the work and actions of others. Any decision you take will affect other community members, and we expect you to take those consequences into account when making decisions.

Be Respectful

Value each other’s ideas, styles, and viewpoints. We may not always agree, but disagreement is no excuse for poor manners. Be open to different possibilities and to be wrong. Be respectful in all interactions and communications, especially when debating the merits of different options. Be aware of your impact and how intense interactions may be affecting people. Be direct, constructive, and positive. Speak up. Take responsibility for your impact and your mistakes – if someone says they have been harmed through your words or actions, listen carefully, apologize sincerely, and correct the behavior going forward.

Be Nice

Please be courteous, respectful, and polite to fellow community members. We all want to enjoy being a part of a community that is kind to one another. Support each other and yourselves whenever possible.

Be Collaborative

The Andela movement depends on collaboration: finding and connecting opportunities that challenge each other, learning from one another, solving complex problems together, and achieving success is why we are here.

As a contributor, you should aim to collaborate with other community members, as well as other communities that are interested in or depend on the work you do. Your work should be high-quality, considerate, and delivered in a timely manner.

Appreciate and Accommodate Our Similarities and Differences

Andela Community Members come from many cultures and backgrounds. Cultural differences can encompass everything from official religious observances to personal habits to clothing. Be respectful of people with different cultural practices, attitudes, and beliefs. Work to eliminate your own biases, prejudices, and discriminatory practices. Think of others’ needs from their point of view. Use preferred titles (including pronouns) and the appropriate tone of voice. Respect people’s right to privacy and confidentiality. Be open to learning from and educating others as well as educating yourself; it is unrealistic to expect Andela Community Members to know the cultural practices of every ethnic and cultural group, but everyone needs to recognize one’s native culture is only part of positive interactions.

Ask For Help When Unsure

Nobody is expected to be perfect in this community. Asking questions early avoids many problems later, so questions are encouraged, though they may be directed to the appropriate forum. Those who are asked should be responsive and helpful.

Supporting Diversity

Andela values community diversity. If you are new to conversations about diversity, here are our guidelines for supporting marginalized groups in our community. 

  • Acknowledge that the lived experiences of marginalized groups are valid. We acknowledge that each community member will experience the world differently, based on their past experiences, background, and identity. We encourage you to bring your experiences to community conversations while being open to learning about other people’s different lived experiences.
  • Process intense feelings about diversity with a friend. If you have never experienced discrimination, learning about it may make you feel uncomfortable, upset, or even angry. You may feel sad because you didn’t realize the world was unjust. You may feel guilty because you hold unconscious bias. You may feel excluded because your experiences with hardship are not viewed as discrimination. We encourage you to process those feelings with a person with a similar background who understands the discrimination marginalized groups in our community face.
  • Listen to marginalized groups, but try not to put the burden of education on them. We encourage community members to be curious about different lived experiences. However, note that people from marginalized groups in our community are often asked to explain their experiences. Providing education and examples of discrimination can be emotionally draining. We ask those community members to do their own research before asking for education from marginalized groups in our community. If a community member does not want to discuss a diversity topic with you, please respect their wishes. Reasonable communication of topic boundaries is not against the Code of Conduct.
  • Be open to learning how to be more inclusive. It’s important that our community talk about how to become more inclusive. If you see behavior that is discriminatory, we encourage you to report it to the Code of Conduct Committee (see the end of this document for details on how to contact them). We also recognize that community members may choose to privately or publicly critique behavior that negatively impacts marginalized groups in our community. It is not against the Code of Conduct to provide such a critique.
  • Avoid critiquing people’s tone when they talk about discrimination. Talking about discrimination and different lived experiences can be difficult. Seeing biased or discriminatory statements can bring up past negative experiences for marginalized groups in our community. These negative experiences often bring up strong emotions, which may lead to the person communicating in a more blunt tone. We encourage community members to acknowledge others’ experiences with discrimination, rather than critiquing the tone that people use to communicate about that discrimination.
  • Understand that creating an inclusive culture takes time, energy, and resources. Andela acknowledges that discrimination, harassment, unconscious bias, and systemic inequality exists. Because of this, people from marginalized groups in our community may have less access to resources or opportunities. It is important for our community to take action and correct these issues. All community change requires resources (such as time, influence, or money). We acknowledge that such resources will be spent on correcting past bias and discrimination.

Behavior That Is Not Tolerated

Everyone who interacts with Andela and the community should be better off because of it and have the best possible experience they can. In order to be clear what that means, we’ve provided a list of examples of behaviors that are inappropriate for Andela community spaces.

Deliberate or Careless Intimidation, Stalking, or Following

Either online or in-person, unwelcome monitoring of people, their companies, work, or social accounts are inappropriate.

Violence and Threats of Violence

Violence and threats of violence are not acceptable – online or offline. This includes incitement of violence toward any individual, including encouraging a person to commit self-harm. This also includes posting or threatening to post other people’s personally identifying information (“doxing”) online. 

Sustained disruption of online discussion, talks, or other events

Sustained disruption of events, online discussions, or meetings, including talks and presentations, will not be tolerated. This includes, spamming email or chat channels, ‘Talking over’ or ‘heckling’ event speakers, or influencing crowd actions that cause hostility in event sessions. Sustained disruption also includes drinking alcohol to excess or using recreational drugs to excess, or pushing others to do so.

Harassment of people who don’t drink alcohol

We do not tolerate derogatory comments about those who abstain from alcohol or other substances. We do not tolerate pushing people to drink, talking about their abstinence or preferences to others, or pressuring them to drink – physically or through jeering.

Sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic, ableist language or otherwise exclusionary language

This includes deliberately referring to someone by a gender that they do not identify with, and/or questioning the legitimacy of an individual’s gender identity. If you’re unsure if a word is derogatory, don’t use it. This also includes repeated subtle and/or indirect discrimination.

Unwelcome sexual attention or behavior that contributes to a sexualized environment

This includes sexualized comments, jokes, or imagery in interactions, communications, or presentation materials, as well as inappropriate touching, groping, or sexual advances. Community members should not use sexualized images, activities, or other material. 

Unwelcome physical contact

This includes touching a person without permission, including sensitive areas such as their hair, pregnant stomach, mobility device (wheelchair, scooter, etc), or tattoos. This also includes physically blocking or intimidating another person. Physical contact or simulated physical contact (such as emojis like “kiss”) without affirmative consent is not acceptable. This includes the sharing or distribution of sexualized images or text.

Influencing or encouraging inappropriate behavior 

If you influence or encourage another person to violate the Code of Conduct, you may face the same consequences as if you had violated the Code of Conduct.

Participants asked to stop any inappropriate behavior are expected to comply immediately. If you are the subject of an incident report or if you wish to report inappropriate behavior, your personal data will be processed by Andela as set forth in the Incident Response Plan. You consent to such processing.

Confidentiality

You may receive certain confidential or proprietary technical and business information and materials from other community members, Andela employees, or Andela Clients. By joining the Andela Community, you agree that you will hold and maintain in strict confidence all confidential information from other parties and of Andela Clients, will not disclose such confidential information to any third party, and will not use any confidential information of the other parties or of Andela Clients except as may be necessary. Confidential information shall not include any information that is in the public domain or becomes publicly known through no fault of the receiving party or is otherwise properly received from a third party without an obligation of confidentiality.

Reporting a Code of Conduct Incident

We encourage community members to make a Code of Conduct incident report to the Andela Code of Conduct Committee by emailing [email protected] This is a retaliation and punishment-free report. It is every Andelan’s responsibility to promote a culture of ethics.

Participation

Abiding by this code of conduct is non-negotiable.  Failure to abide by this code of conduct could, without limitation, result in any one, or multiple, of the following outcomes: a written warning, being placed on a probationary performance review plan, suspension, revocation of invitation, removal, or banning from the Andela Community and Talent Network.

Modifications to these guidelines

Andela may amend the guidelines from time to time and may also vary the procedures it sets out where appropriate in a particular case. Your agreement to comply with the guidelines will be deemed agreement to any changes to it.