Podcast Ep. 53: How a Daily Equity Practice Builds Revenue & Mitigates PR Risk Management

Jan 13, 2021

In this episode of The Forum Podcast, Carole Burton (Radiance Resources) explores the direct connection between how your people feel, engage, and perform and the growth of an organization.

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You might lift an eyebrow when you hear the concept of “equity” related to the bottom line. Does creating an inclusive workplace impact your company’s return on investment and brand footprint?
Yes. Now more than ever, there is a direct connection between how your people feel, engage, and perform. This shift is paramount to the growth and reputation of the organization. As workplace expectations continue to grow in this new reality, there is a need to prepare, create a safe and inclusive environment.

A Daily Equity practice is a way to incorporate these expectations throughout all projects, processes, and ways of knowing. That means exploring unconscious bias, expanding self-awareness, and examining cultural competency.

A Daily Equity Practice helps leaders shift their mindset and hence their teams. By improving internal communication, Return on Investment (ROI), and the organization’s external brand footprint for the better. We discover how to alter company structures, provide access for employees to share their expertise, and fully experience lasting organizational change.

Learning Outcomes
  • Learn what happens when organizations apply the Bolman and Deal (2008) Reframing organizations: Artistry, choice, and leadership, connecting Equity to Return on Investment
  • Discover ways when helping employees build Equity, encourages good Public Relations Risk management
  • Explore the definition and effect of creating a Daily Equity Practice mindset

Sponsored by

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The following is an uncorrected transcript generated by a transcription service. Before quoting in print, please check the corresponding audio for accuracy.

Speaker: [00:00:00] The Forum on Workplace Inclusion’s 2021 podcast series is sponsored by Best Buy. The next installment of our popular diversity insights presentations is Wednesday, February 3rd, titled, Removing the red and blue divide: What it means for corporate America and belonging, brings DEI practitioners and thought leaders from across America on both sides of the political aisle to discuss how we can now admits the divisiveness, double down and equip leaders on how to bridge the divide. For more information and to register, visit forumworkplaceinclusion.org.

It’s happening. The forum’s 33rd Annual Conference workplace revolution is March 8th through 12th, 2021. A forum conference like never before, the 33rd annual conference will be completely virtual, with the same high-quality forum programming you’ve come to know, love, and expect. This year’s annual conference is our most affordable, most accessible, and at five days long, our biggest conference ever. Register early and take advantage of reduced pricing. Join us from anywhere on March 8th through 12th, 2021, for the forum on workplace inclusion 33rd annual conference workplace revolution. Be a part of the global conversation, be a part of the solution, be a part of the workplace revolution. For more information visit forumworkplaceinclusion.org/2021. That’s forumworkplaceinclusion.org/2021.

We get to engage people, advance ideas, and ignite change, because of the generous support from our community. If you find our resources meaningful or valuable, please consider supporting the forum today. Visit forumworkplaceinclusion.org/donate. That’s forumworkplaceinclusion.org/donate. Thank you very much for your support and generosity.

With that, I’d like to say thank you to all our listeners and subscribers. You help support the growth of the podcast and reach new listeners. If you like what you’re hearing on the forum podcast, please consider writing a review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to your podcasts. If you’ve already written a review, thank you. Please consider sharing our [00:02:00] podcast with a friend, family member, or a colleague you think might find value in the content. Word of mouth is the best way the forum grows, so thank you very much for listening and sharing. Thanks again and enjoy the show.


Ben Cabangun: Hello, and thank you for tuning in for today’s podcast, How a Daily Equity Practice Builds Revenue and Mitigates PR Risk Management, with Carole Burton of Radiance Resources, sponsored by Best Buy. I’m Ben Rue, Programs Associate here at The Forum on Workplace Inclusion. You might lift an eyebrow when you hear the concept of equity related to the bottom line. Does creating an inclusive workplace impact your company’s return on investment and brand footprint? The answer is yes. Now more than ever, there’s a direct connection between how your people feel, engage, and perform.

This shift is paramount to the growth and expectation of the organization. As workplace expectations continue to grow in this new reality, there’s a need to prepare, create a safe space and inclusive environment. A daily equity practice is a way to incorporate these expectations throughout all projects, processes, and ways of knowing. That means exploring unconscious bias, expanding self-awareness, and examining cultural competency. A daily equity practice helps leaders shift their mindset and hence their teams.

By improving internal communication, return on investment, and the organization’s external brand footprint for the better, we discover how to alter company structures, provide access for employees to share their expertise, and fully experience lasting organizational change. In this podcast, you’ll learn what happens when organizations apply the Bolman and Deal, reframing organizations’ artistry, choice, and leadership connecting equity to return on investment. Discover ways when helping employees build equity, encourages good public relations risk management, and explore the definition and effect of creating a daily equity practice mindset.

Carole Burton [00:04:00] offers a different approach for professional development that provides lasting results. Carole started Radiance Resources that focuses on accountability, equity, and adapting. Carole guides mission-focused and leaders to connect, engage, and mentor, to create meaningful change. Carole’s professionals expertise includes roles in sales and purchasing. She has worked in retail and industrial manufacturing-focused organizations. In each position, Carole took the time to understand how her role impacted others. Deeply understanding institutional structures, Carole is not afraid to tackle significant initiatives.

Through her Radiance Real Talk, speaking, and seminars, Carole uses her gift of storytelling. She makes every interaction personal, every encounter genuinely unique, and every conversation meaningful. Carole earned her Bachelor’s in Human Resource Management from Winona State University and a master’s degree in Leadership Studies at Augsburg University. She was the Student Representative Commencement Speaker for both graduation ceremonies.

Carole, thank you so much for being here and being part of our 2021 podcast series. We’re really excited to have you join us for the series, especially with all your podcast experience.

Carole Burton: Thank you. This is a fantastic opportunity, Ben. I’m really excited to be part of this conversation, especially how much life is changing and the changes that we can make in life, so thank you.

Ben: Here’s to change. Here’s to 2021 bringing change. Positive change, I hope.

Carole: Definitely.

Ben: Yes, definitely. Well, let’s jump right in. What is your definition of equity for organizations, and how can equity connect to return on investment, or ROI as it’s more commonly known?

Carole: Sure. I’ve been on a journey for some time now, and I really started studying what equity is. I didn’t realize how vast and deep equity plays in so many [00:06:00] areas of our lives. One way that I said was I found over 15 to 20 different allocations of equity, which is absolutely incredible. I wanted to make sure to really understand the overall scope of what equity is, so I created a definition of it after much study. For me, equity is a balance of ensuring that there is a level playing field for everyone to feel. I think feel is so important in this. To feel, seen, heard, and valued. It is really stepping out of being me-centered and shifting to be we-centered.

In organizations, when we think about it, we focus on the “we” hence we contribute to the mission, and it’s a much larger space. If we’re focused on the mission of an organization, it’s much bigger than us. If we take it a little step further, through being part of a “we” culture, each of us has an opportunity to provide real-world solutions. Hence, we can drive profit, we can look at risk management as far as PR, with public relations. We can include and change and move, and possibly increase that bottom line, and hence prioritize our people equally.

From an ROI perspective, with the return on investment, for me, equity goes beyond the, If we have equity in the workplace, then we have ROI. I think a lot of leaders today really need to see what that looks like. How can ROI look for those who are in organizations that are responsible for the output, the actual production output? In that, they always look at cost avoidance, cost reduction, or cost savings. That’s one area to look– That’s one way of looking at ROI, as far as equity. The other side are those who are the creatives. They’re the ones who created something from [00:08:00] nothing.

Nine times out of 10, they’re given a budget. In other words, they’re given an expense budget to say, “Go create, go design, go make this happen.” Create something from nothing, is what I like to call that space. In that way, it’s if they create something and it is produced, how is it going to be received to, not only the group, the client, the end-user, but how was it received overall? For me, that’s two different ways of looking at ROI. In that, if I am part of the “we” I’m going to think beyond me. I’m going to think about my neighbor, my family, my friends, colleagues, both where I live, and maybe I don’t even know who they are.

If we talk about, in one case, racial equity, we’ll just talk about racial equity. What could that look like from those two perspectives? If we talk about employee equity, if my customer is number one, my employees should be number one, if not above that number one. For me, that is where equity and ROI play. That gap is where we, as responsible leaders of our organizations, of where we work, where we play, and what we give to the community, come together in the larger and greater “we”.

Ben: Thank you for that beautiful definition. Yes, there’s no “I” in team, to be cliché. With everything happening in the world, actually, the one benefit of COVID and everything is I think it has brought a greater “we” over your idea, or emphasis on the– Well, in most of the world. Why would you say is the impact of consistent equity practices essential when it is leveraged in [00:10:00] the workplace daily?

Carole: I think that it has to happen daily. In my mind, I had my experience. I reported to 26 managers when I worked for someone, 2-6, 26. That’s a lot of people. For me, the one thing that I found was that I had 26 managers in my professional career. In that, I learned a lot about, from a daily perspective, how do I contribute to the bottom line? We know that qualitative skills, how you’re a leader, how you speak, communication, how you present, what your critical thinking skills are, all the things that make you do your job well, those skills, are utilized every single day.

My argument is, if we create a daily equity practice, we are mindful of, not only what we bring to the table and contribution of our gifts, skills, talents, and experiences, we can also find ways to create processes that are succinct, that may save money because we figured out ways to do it easier, simpler, quicker, and better, as well as figure out ways that ROI can be a holistic approach, that it is not necessarily just the qualitative, but it is also the quantitative.

My assertion is, the qualitative skills we do every single day, that we bring to the table every day in our workplace, literally impacts the bottom line financially, and the qualitative space [00:12:00] every single day. If we have gaps missing in that space, we are hence not thriving as well as the organization could, meaning we are not really completing the mission on a daily basis, whatever the mission is of the organization.

If we have the qualities of who we are, coupled with the quantities of what that looks like, I believe that we can actually create ease, believe it or not in the workplace with having the daily equity practice. When we do that, not only does the organization make money, hence it can thrive to fulfill what? The purpose of the organization. You have people who are trusted, who feel like they can communicate, who feel like they are in a safe environment, who then understand that their managers don’t have to be micromanagers because the micromanagers understand what they do as well too, you see?

The daily equity practice fits in to all aspects of how a human being can contribute in a 360 perspective. Right now, I don’t think that that’s really happening. When we have people who come to organizations today, who feel like they come to the organization, but then who leave because of the manager, that’s a gap, that’s a big gap. Why I’m asserting, why can’t we have ROI be a 360 conversation utilizing DENI, or equity as underneath and as part of that vehicle for that engine to run known as your employee?

Therefore. taking it even a step further, through really great professional development programming, [00:14:00] we can do what? We can retain. Guess what folks, that’s a cost-savings as well. It’s considered a soft cost and it’s still a cost-savings. Then if we have happy employees that retain, who stay there, who become your emerging leaders, your credibility in your brand do what? They increase. Therefore then you have people wanting to knock on your door to what? Become part of the organization, regardless if it is employee, regardless if it is a vendor, regardless it is other organizations in your industry. That, to me, is the power of creating a daily equity practice.

Ben: Thank you for that. Why should teams and organizations discuss equity, return on investment, and second PR risk management perspective?

Carole: Sure. There’s a third layer. When you have equity in the workplace, everyone feels safe, they feel heard and value, fabulous. They feel like they can contribute, great. Then when you have this whole thing called this PR, that’s the public relations, they then say, it’s just not the original, the start of those first meetings when in the creative process, you have people from all parts of the organization come together per se and say, what are we missing? Are there experiences out there that we’re missing, that we don’t know?

We should bring those to the table, see that’s equity, and that’s also the ROI, because if we’re addressing a product, if we’re addressing an initiative, if we’re addressing a project, all three have to be in play again for that 360 holistic perspective. It’s got to be holistic. I don’t know if that’s really happening, and if it is, great, how can you [00:16:00] make it better? How can you deepen it, so that the employee, as well as the end-user benefit, the whole purpose of the mission of the organization?

Ben: Great, thank you. Now regarding equity from an organization design lens, what is Bolman and Deal’s reframing organization perspective?

Carole: Sure. So Bolman and Deal is very well-known in the academic space. Their theory has been around for a long time. It’s organization framework, as far as looking at the perspective of organizations in four realms. The first realm is in the structural. Literally, how does the structure of an organization, how was it created, and how was it maintained? The second is in the human capital. Now some people also call it human resource. That’s not human resources as the department, that’s the human resource. In other words, the human beings who create the ideas, that is the capital and the resource as an investment.

You have the structural investment of how an organization is literally created. Then you’ve got the human capital that literally create the ideas. That’s another resource. Then the third area is the political. The political structures is how the organization actually operates in the political spaces of how everything runs. Now that’s different than structural because the structural are the bones or the foundational or the pillars. The political is how it actually operates from itself. Yes, you do have the politics in that construct as well.

Then the fourth area of Bolman is the symbolic or the cultural. It’s how the organization does what they do. Every single process, every single step, every single project, if you will, management wise, also the rituals, how are people greeted? How do they interact? How [00:18:00] do they communicate? That’s all part of the structure and actual, real rituals. What happens when someone is celebrating a birthday, the celebration of a fantastic project that launched, how organizations get together as far as the community, that’s all part of the structures of the culture.

When you have equity and ROI with Bolman, they layer on top of each other quite well because Bolman actually creates beautiful foundational piece for equity and ROI to consistently imbalance. When those two are not imbalanced, something’s off in that structural space if you look at the organization from those perspectives. Therefore, Bolman and Deal can really play in how ROI can be maintained, sustained, and involved because of that.

Ben: Wow. Thank you so much for that introduction. How do equity, ROI, and PR risk management interact as resources to create a daily equity practice?

Carole: I’ve been really studying how that whole piece works from that public relation space. Recently, I’ll just give a really interesting example of some foundational work or research work of in doing. There was a movie, there were two movies actually done back in the early ’80s, in the ’80s. They were called Arthur and Dudley Moore and Liza Minnelli were basically the two main characters. Back in 1981, the first movie is an American comedy and it talks really about a drunken New York City billionaire, who was on the brink of an arranged marriage to a wealthy heiress, but ends up falling instead in love with the Liza Minnelli personality who was a working-class girl from the Queens, from New York.[00:20:00] It got rave reviews, it made over $95 million, but here’s the funny part. They did part two Arthur II on the rocks in 1988. Seven years later, they distributed and sent the film out. The second film only made $14.7 million of the box office. It got what we would call baby attend to 13% rotten tomatoes rating. As opposed to an 88% rotten tomatoes rating for the first one. I firmly believe the reason why the second one didn’t do well was because, by the time that they released that second film, the American society had changed its attitude toward alcoholism. For whatever reason, the film producers, directors, or distributors missed that societal shift. Isn’t that fascinating? Isn’t that interesting?

Ben: Yes. I was going to say, it is very interesting that because not noticing that, people don’t think alcoholism is as funny anymore, maybe we should adjust that.

Carole: Yes. Not even do the second film, but they may have had to have to distribute it because once it’s done, it was hard to tell what happened on the financial side of having to have the film be released. It was hard to work contracts with their whatever. It was really interesting because of that huge societal’s shift that organization took a PR risk and didn’t do well.

It’s one of those that we have to keep the pulse, in other words, they didn’t have the right people in the room literally or people’s in the room during the timeframe when they said we’ve got to push this out. If they did, and this happens [00:22:00] a lot as well, they may have had the right people in the room then but those people didn’t speak up. We’ve seen that a lot in history where those folks didn’t speak up. Because of that, things fall. It’s the people who don’t speak up that may know more and understand than those that do.

There’s the other thing is making sure that everybody in the room literally talks in a way that they feel comfortable speaking up. Regardless if it’s in front of people, email, texting, talking on the sidebar. Make sure that all voices and all divergent thinking and concerns are brought to that table as well in a succinct manner. It can happen. That was the best correlation of how they all together.

Ben: If there were more people talking, someone probably should have said, let’s not do this again in 2011, because that was a disaster. That I got a 26%. The remake in 2011, it’s nonsense.

Carole: Exactly, in seven years, 1981 and 1988, it made a big difference. You know as well as I, all the associations, all the mental health people that work was starting to take more and more in play and it really shifted society to say, “Oh, my gosh, this is not funny. This isn’t funny. This is not appropriate. We do have a big issue.” It’s amazing of how life shifts in a very short timeframe.

All I’m saying is for organizations, when you have ideas, check the pulse before you send it out to make sure that it’s okay and have leaders not listen to the same people. [00:24:00] Have leaders in organizations listen to other people in the organization. I think a lot of times we get so in our bubbles in our various areas and divisions and pieces parts of organizations that we don’t leave that bubble.

Sometimes we got to leave the bubble so we don’t miss and lose more than what we had anticipated because we didn’t have a true 360 per view look from an objective, even though it may hurt us, “Oh, my gosh, I’ve been working on this project for long and you tell me is no longer worth it?” I am saying, it may not be no longer worth what the audience that you were talking to. They may have moved on to something else.

How do you deal with that? Was that whole PR piece within the ROI, because you ended up spending more than what you had anticipated, or in this case, losing a lot more from 95 million in 1981 to barely 15 million eight years later. That’s amazing.

Ben: That is astonishing actually. I feel like you just did that, but can you give me an example of PR risk management when it impacts an organization?

Carole: Sure. We can go on the other side, we can go onto a positive. We can do a positive of it is. When PR works really well, it just hits all the right notes beautifully. I think we’ve seen a lot of this with COVID. We really can talk about with COVID all the positives that have come out. We’ve been able to– organizations who have really pivoted– Well, I’ll give you one, Simon Sinek. I’ll give you the person as well as his organization.

Simon sat and looked and he was said, okay. [00:26:00] Simon Sinek here’s organization. I didn’t realize how big his team was to be bluntly honest. Simon, we all know him as an amazing presenter. He is an optimist. He talked about, start with why. He talked about that. The golden circle, all his work is amazing. Most of his work is on the road. He’s normally talking in front of executive groups, corporate groups, corporate organizations. He’s talking to thousands of people in arenas. Well, COVID hits and he can’t go out on a stage, let alone fly when we went into lockdown in spring.

He got together with his team and it was fascinating. I actually got to see him in a seminar. That was an amazing journey of how I did that. That was cool. Online, of course. He actually showed us how he was adapting. This really plays well into this, if you will. What he did was that he got the whole team together and he said, “Okay, we can’t travel. We can’t sell the books. We can’t sell the products we used to,” because people were used to seeing him one-on-one face-to-face.

He said, “Huh, how can I adapt and how can I meet people where they are?” That’s the other piece to equity as well as meeting people where they are. They, in a virtual circle, he assigned them, each of his employees, on all levels of the organization, to come up with 15 ideas of how we could deliver content. 15. The reason why he did, 15 was nine times out of 10, the first five or seven, everybody’s going to have the same idea. The real work happens from number eight, down to 15, the others. They got [00:28:00] all together virtually and they said– he said, every single person read off what their idea was and categorized them in red, yellow, and green.

I thought of red light, yellow light, green light, game I used to play when I was a kid. What he did was, everyone– Anyone that has the same idea that was just said, scratch it off. Someone would say, “Whatever. Oh, I had that one.” He said, “Stop that language. It’s not a competition.” There’s another piece of equity in ROI in this story. Everybody marked off what they had. They had all these unique ideas.

Then he did the red light, yellow light green light. The green light was any content or any program or idea that the organization could initiate within two weeks, up, done. The yellow light was that it took a little bit of more work and it was probably three to four weeks. The red light was any program or idea that would take more than six weeks. He took those off the shelf. He said we’ve got to meet people where they are. In that, if you go onto his website, you will see, he now has a full page of all these amazing classes with different prices points. Some of them are pay as what you can afford, which is amazing.

That is how Simon, not only did he adapt, he literally met where his people were. That is what I call a live ROI because it became a living, breathing thing for him because of how now he can interact with people from all around the world. It was so well accepted. It blew his mind that his organization has now grown. [00:30:00]

Ben: It’s crazy how so many organizations are adapting like that because of COVID. Yes, the successful ones are the ones who are taking this opportunity to grow. I love that red light, green light, or red light, yellow light, green light system [crosstalk]. It sounds similar to what we did here at the forum because we like many companies we’re talking about expanding our online presence and all these things. It was always something that was a couple of weeks or months down the road and then COVID happened. It’s like, no, what can we do?

Carole: Got to do it now.

Ben: What could we do in two weeks? Can we get started now?

Carole: That’s right. For me, I think I look back at that scenario and that’s what Simon did between April and June within two months. That’s what they did. For me, I thought what a great way to respect your people because he respected them just that much that he took their ideas and said, “Okay, let’s go.” Trusted it. Trusted everybody. Everybody pitched in because they were there for the mission and look how much they learned. Look how much every single employee grew in their professional development, as well as how they became efficient and moved their money from the capital, from the ROI perspective, from the investment, and look how much he’s been able to serve the world. That’s huge.

How the worlds’ been able to serve each other because they’ve all become part of the community. I’ve had people who have done it, who actually did one of them. On the other side, the participants, in some of the courses became partners. They became basically accountability partners to continue the work beyond the course that they took. [00:32:00] Therefore, they then could continue their community building, networking, supporting each other, being accountable beyond the initial Simon Sinek course that they participated in with Sinek and/or his people.

Ben: That’s amazing.

Carole: It’s amazing, oh my God.

Ben: Then you had mentioned being able to attend one virtually and a lot of people wouldn’t have had that opportunity before when he was going around in person, which is–

Carole: Exactly.

Ben: Such a great example. Thank you for that. Now, again, thank you for being here and for this conversation. I’m sorry to say that this is going to be the last question, but since you’ve used that great example, can you share a couple of examples of how the Bolman and Deal reframing organization perspectives model can help create a daily equity practice from our friends Bolman and Deal.

Carole: Our friends Bolman and Deal. I think that with Bolman and Deal, the great thing about how organizations can play with that with equity is really simple. Let’s just take COVID. We go back to Simon actually. He looked at the structure of his organization and said, “How we operate is not going to work.” He really did. That’s the structure. Then what he did was he said, “Okay, I can’t do this by myself.” There’s equity, not about the eye. He tapped into their skills, he tapped into their talents, he tapped into their experience, and most of all, he trusted his people. That’s huge as a leader.

In that, he said, “If my structure of how we do business needs to be altered to thrive [00:34:00] while we are surviving through COVID, that’s a big distinction. How do I do this?” He became a vulnerable leader. That’s big. That’s one of the things that I find with Bolman and Deal. That’s an advantage for leaders. Then he said, “Okay, I’ve got the structure, I’ve got to change, but I’ve got the human capital, my people to change it.” Then where he pulled in the political in my mind is that he said, “How do we actually do this so that operationally we work well? How do I make sure everyone gets paid? How do I make sure that everyone communicates to their best?” You see what I’m saying?

That’s all the political, that’s all that topical stuff of how it actually gets done. I said, “Okay, he figured that out because he used the human capital,” and he said, “How can I shift the structure? How can I shift my mindset?” See, this is all mindset shift as well. Then he said, “How’s this going to change the culture of my organization? How do I make sure that my people are okay mentally, the health and wellness? How do I make sure my people are dealing with their children at home, are dealing with elders who may be in assisted living that I can’t get to my parents, but I’ve got to make sure that they’re taken care of plus do my job?” I’m making this up but I’m thinking a lot of that may have happened.

“How do I take care of my kids who are in college, in the military, in tech schools? How do I take care of my aunts and uncles? You see what I’m saying? How do I take care of all of that and still do my job?” I believe that that’s all part of the culture now. If we think from a we-centered mindset, that is how we changed the structure. That is how we take care of our people. That is how we [00:36:00] move to make sure that the operations and all the nuances of shifts of how organizations operate and perform and live and thrive with how we make sure we keep our traditions and change our culture at the same time operate.

I think that’s how Bolman and Deal infuse ROI and hands down, how it can infuse my daily practice equity. In other words, you take that big picture that I just shared and you say, “How do we make sure that–” You work backwards. “How do you make sure that that gets down to, okay I got to give this morning, I got to take care of the kids. I got to take care of my spouse. I got to take care of the dogs, cats, lizards, and snakes. All right, now that I got them handled, how do I do this on a daily practice?” If we take the big picture and go backwards to the every single day, that is how we create the daily practice.

We make sure that we listen. We make sure that we keep focused, that we are balanced, that we make sure that we separate the emotions from the what-so, that we live in calm. We make sure that we sleep, that we eat clean and eat well, as best as we can. We talk to people that know and can hear us, that we have accountability partners. These are all the things that we can do on a daily basis that we don’t check in to browbeat our people on weekly calls that are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday but we check in to simply say, “How are you doing? What can I do right now? What do you need right now?”

If each member on the team asks those questions and checks in they’re on their teammates as a collective, I think a lot of the breakdowns that we’re seeing right now, they still are going to be there but I think they’d be a little bit [00:38:00] more manageable that we really say, “Do we really need to have 15 meetings in a day? Do we really need to have 15 meetings a day? Do we really? We really don’t need to have 15 meetings in a day. How can we make my life easy, make your life easy, make our lives easy?”

A lot of that is checking in to say, “How can we change the structures of how we’re doing it? How can we make sure we’re changing how we’re listening and hearing ourselves and each other, and how can we make sure that we keep in contact in a real way?”

Ben: I’m just thinking of 15 meetings in a day and how awful that sounds.

Carole: I’ve actually had people that are on average, depending on what their responsibility is between 7 to 15 meetings. I’ve had one person be in 19 meetings. I’m like, “How can you even breathe?

Ben: I feel there’s a– I don’t want to say duality but I understand the need to still be connected than one who was separated, which is you don’t get that connection through email often. I can see that and you can’t go on pop into someone’s office and just ask them a question or interact with them and have that interactivity with people. There has to be a way to structure it so you still have that interactivity with people without consuming their lives and also being, that’s also very counterproductive spending all that time in meetings when you can. That’s also not equitable for everyone because there are people who have things to take care of, like parents, kids. I can’t be in meetings all day because now I have to be taking care of these things.

It’s a lot to take in and a lot of– If you do, it can be very rewarding to– when all things considered and executed correctly and on a daily basis. I think it’s very, very-

Carole: Even creating the daily equity practice itself, Ben, real quick. It doesn’t have to take, a three-day retreat. It could– maybe an hour. If you are succinct, if you pull that meeting together, so that it’s very structured and very open for people’s ideas, you can actually get that done. You can actually create it in a few hours. It doesn’t have to take 30 hours because that’s defeating the purpose.

Ben: Especially 30 hours on a Zoom meeting.

Carole: Exactly. So what I’m saying is that it’s really a lot about how do we bring common sense into how we structure right now? How do we keep it simple? Just really keep it simple. I think that’s the bigger conversation about all this and in doing so then we– Okay. Got it. All right. Just keep it simple. It doesn’t have to be– Our structures are so complex as it is now an organization. How can we keep it simple? That’s how you create the daily habit. You got to keep it simple. It’s got to be simple because that’s how you create the habit in order to live it all the time.

Ben: I was going to say, that’s the million-dollar question and it sounds easier said than done but it can be done.

Carole: It’s easier to say done but it can be– With intent, it can be done well. I’ve seen it. It can be done and it can be done well. Then when you think you got it done, well, take it to the next level. That’s what equity is about. Equity is a living breathing conversation. It is not stagnant. It is not something that goes on the bookshelf. This is a living breathing thing that we all know.

Ben: I can’t think of a [00:42:00] better way to end than that.

Carole: I do too. Thank you, Ben.

Ben: Thank you so much, Carole, for that radiant conversation. If you’d like to learn more or continue the conversation, you can listen to Carole’s Radiance Real Talk at anchor.fm/radiance-real-talk or contact her directly at caroleeburton@radianceresources.org. You can listen to more Forum Podcast at our website forumworkplaceinclusion.org/podcast or find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Anchor, and Stitcher. Thank you again for listening and thank you again to our sponsor, Best Buy. Have a great day.

Speaker: Thank you again for listening to The Forum on Workplace Inclusion Podcast. Don’t forget to subscribe to our podcast to get updates and latest episodes. Also, tell us what you think by reviewing our podcast. We’d love to hear your feedback. For more information visit us at forumworkplaceinclusion.org or search Workplace Forum on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Thank you very much and have a great day.

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