Re: It's an advantage, stupid.
The Silicon Valley Interview (circa The Bubble were all-damned-day affairs feared by the candidates And the interviewers. Imagine an eight hour day (we imagined them all the time, I still think they're Unicorn Farts but imagine anyway) and imagine eight bright and shiny candidates and eight engineers already teetering on a visit from nice folk in white coats that have to interview them, in Rotation. Sometimes we gang-b...saved time by interviewing them as a working unit of two or three. We took the candidate we had during lunch, to lunch, and the group took the candidates at large to dinner (where we drank copiously on the company AmEx because ...) then we sent them away and spent the next eight hours doing the work that was interrupted and discussing them.
I bitch because it made for a Monster bitch of a day for everyone involved, however, it was freakin' Great for team building. People were hired that could do the job partly based on how they fit in the existing group but can contribute far more than the sum of their part because they add something unique to the group. My favorite example is actually a Digital Age magazine with really good papaer and ink you might have read at some point: We were right crazy bastards, and white guys were not In Charge, nor were we the smartest people in the room. I couldn't imagine working in a homogenous group of just Bros.
And miss watching the 98lb Chinese Woman Middleware Developer drink the 240lb Berkeley UNIX Network Dude on Two-For-One Tuesday At The Pub? How about watching your QA team with enough piercings to carry 10g of metal through an airport security check (on the way to Vegas COMDEX)? Not a chance. I firmly support diversity in the workplace...if for no other reason than Quality Entertainment.
[Seriously: When you work 60+ hours per week together, teams arent good enough. Better to be like Family. I've seen some funny looking Families, clearly bastards the lot of us and we've built some neat shit. I'll never go back to Doughy White Bro Corporate IT. I am pissed that MY Silicon Valley took this path instead.]