Updated: Jun 4
Day 2 started with a lovely breakfast. Conferences are better with good food!
Laura Sabattini provided a quick recap and then we jumped into “You can’t have belonging without beating bias” by Callie Gauld and Heather Hansen from Esurance. They started by asking questions using the https://www.mentimeter.com/ app. As a facilitator, I really appreciated an interactive tool. Callie and Heather emphasized experiential learning to discuss bias. They discussed cultural bias using the Intercultural Development Inventory® (IDI®). Their approach fights the stigmas that exist by first assessing an individual’s intercultural competence.
Sasha Strock presented “Gender expression and transgender inclusion at work”. She discussed how she transitioned at age 50 and her subsequent experience in the workplace. Sasha did not use any slides so we could focus on her message. She took the time to discuss terms to use and shared a statistic that 24% of youth between 13-17 years old do not identify as male or female. Sasha was impressive, vulnerable, and compelling all at once.
The session on “Aging” by Patrick Arbore was informative and helped to break down myths. Ageism is real and alive in some companies. Patrick shared that 65+ is the fastest growing population and that the way people look at retirement is changing. As life expectancies have increased it is possible that you could have 30 years of retirement and people must prepare for this possibility. He discussed common myths such as older people dislike technology. Patrick also shared ideas about how to slowly move into retirement such as working 3 days a week and mentoring up and coming managers.
Natalie Simmons, from Zendesk discussed employee resource groups (ERGs) , Intersectionality, Allyship & Belonging. She shared how Zendesk is prioritizing intersectionality, so that ERGs have events together and really create a culture of belonging. Having a shared calendar, slack channel and a global meeting quarterly allows the ERG leads to come together to share ideas and learn from each other.
Unfortunately, I needed to leave to catch my flight back to Vancouver and couldn’t attend the entire final panel session. If you attended, please let me know what I missed. I had an opportunity to meet some wonderful people who are doing great work every day. Thank you to all the speakers as well as Michael Nenninger, Felicia Rivers, Alyssa Lin, Susi Collins, Jorge Quezada, Miguel Rocha, Tolonda Tolbert, Paul Barrows, Gary Ross and Shelly Allen who I had an opportunity to meet. You are fantastic champions who are driving change.
I look forward to the next Conference Board conference!