The Pavilion Podcast
The Pavilion Podcast

Episode · 1 year ago

RC Extra: An Awkward Conversation

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

RC Extra: An Awkward Conversation

Bok. Hey everybody, it's SamJacobs. Welcome to the revenue collective podcast. Today we've got another bonus episode foryou. We've got the conversation that myself, Brandon Myers, Davante LewisJackson and Robert Daniel had. We called it an awkward conversation and really whatit was was a conversation about race in corporate America, about being a personof color, being a black person, navigating that environment and also what whatwe as allies, what we can do do to support our fellow citizens,our fellow humans and people of Color as they pursue equality and equal representation,particularly at the boardroom level, and and how to think about it given everythingthat's going on in the country, in the United States right now. Sothat was a live stream with interaction from the audience. What we did iswe took it and we're going to take the audio and give it to youhere's podcast. We hope you enjoy it. Just going to be many more ofthis series and awkward conversation, with another one coming up in September.And if you have ideas about what we can do in terms of programming orin terms of education or content, shoot me a note Sam at Revenue Collectivecombut without further ado, let's listen to this. We called it an awkwardconversation. It's the first of what we hope will be a really interesting series. So let's listen. All right, everybody, welcome. It's twelve PMEastern it's nine am, it's a fic time, five PM British Standard Time, and there are other times that it is in other places around the world. Today what we're going to be doing is it's an experiment of store.We're going to be having what we call an awkward conversation and the purpose ofthis conversation, brought to you by revenue collective and revene collective of color,is to try and begin a dialog between people of different backgrounds, different experiences, different skin colors. We acknowledge that there's four men on this panel andthat that's not going to happen again. So we do want to represent differentgenders and different and people that identify in different ways in the future. Thisis how we're getting started and there's a reason why we're getting started this wayand we'll talk about why. But the point of this conversation is to tryand bridge some gaps and to try and create some safe spaces where we canhave conversations that oftentimes we're nervous to have with our coworkers or in public orwith really anyone possibly besides our partners, our spouses or our closest friends.And the context and the rules of this conversation are that we're going to acknowledgethat everybody on this colum hopefully everybody in the chat, comes to this conversationwith an open heart. If you're coming at it from a lack of education, this is an opportunity to have a conversation and to be educated or tohear different perspectives, and we're going to reserve judgment about anybody's, you know, motivation. We're going to assume everybody's motivation is good and the purpose ofit is to to find common ground with our fellow human beings. So that'sthat's part of it. That's not the only thing that revenue collective and thatall of us are going to be doing and that we think we should bedoing, and we're going to be talking about that. This dialog is justone part of, I think, a movement that is hopefully gaining a littlebit of steam and light of all of the recent recent events, to findharmony, to find justice into fine equality all over the world, but especiallyin the United States of America. So this is just one part of whatwe're doing. There's a lot of other things that you can happen. Werecognize and acknowledge and we really appreciate everybody joining us. So I'm going tointroduce some of the folks on the call right now. I'm also going tobe moderating and if you have comments or questions, again, you know whatwe're hoping for is just is is, is comments and questions in the rightspirit of compassion and common ground and dropped into the chat box and we canwe can try to acknowledge them. We do have a sort of some talkingpoints. We've got some topics that we're going to be covering, but ifyou have ideas, are thoughts and you want to drop them into the ChattilFree I've got Brandon Myers that chief have an observer Adora on the call,an incredible revenue leader and somebody that's a really inspirational figure within revenue collective inour COOC. We've got davante Lewis Jackson, the founder of revenue collective of color, and we've got Robert Daniel, who is the found the leader ofour our COOC allies community, and that's the community focused on people that arenot people of Color, are don't identify that way, but want to supportand help our CEOSC and make sure that these initiatives that we're talking about gametraction and actually have concrete and practical implications. So with that, and my nameis Sam Jacobs, I'm the founder of revenue collective and I'm on herejust because it's something I care about very deeply, but I probably won't beon every every conversation going forward. And again, this is the beginning.We hope that this is the beginning of a series. We don't think thatthis is the end all, be all and we recognize that nobody on thiscall is the official spokesperson for any particular race, gender, nationality, etc. We're just for people having a conversation...

...with that. I'll hand it overto Davante. Play Sam. So I'm really pumped to be here. Sammentioned, I am one of the leaders in our SEOC, which is revenuecollective of color. In the main focus for revenue collective cover is first andforemost to create a safe space for black and business people of color within revenuecollective and then also to promote careers in revenue to people from underrepresented backgrounds.Many of the folks that are on this call are in, you know,either direct revenue roles of sellers or kind of supporting that function by marketing,business development and so on, and we all know how fruitful these careers canbe, the earning potential and the learning potential, and we want to makesure that people from all backgrounds of access and interest in those careers. Idon't know, Brennan or Robert, if you wanted to kind of say somethingfor a moment or if not, we can hop right into, you know, some of the questions that we were thinking about. Let's start with thelet's start with those questions. Coal. Let's to it. So the firstquestion is, have your views about race in America change since the murder ofGeorge Floyd? If so, how? Yeah, I can jump in,and so I think there's kind of a double answer to that. So oneI think my personal views around racing America haven't necessarily changed. I think thething that has changed for me in a very positive way is really recognizing thatat this moment in time, many more people understand and recognize that there isan issue when it comes to racing America. And so you, Davanta, youand I have had many conversations around that topic in general. But Iam quite encouraged by, I guess, the awareness of the differences and howpeople from different backgrounds may be treated, whether that's in their daily lives orin corporate America. And so I think you know from my own personal viewsbackgrounds in ways that I kind of came up in the world. I don'tknow that my own personal reflections are around race of change, but I'm alsovery encouraged by seeing just a broadening of kind of the discrepancies that we seeon a day to day basis and the realization of that from from many partsof society that maybe they didn't recognize that before. Robert, how about you? Let's change for you sure. So I would put myself in the categoryof someone where I can say that my I recognize that my views did changefrom at event and I think as someone who's white, I can look backand say it's not that I didn't have an awareness in talking with Davonte andBrandon. You know, this isn't that isn't anywhere near the first incident,but after the murder of George Floyd and after people's reaction, just really tryingto state, take a step back and think about, okay, what assumptionsdo I have that are incorrect and being able to say if a whole populationfeels that way, what, what am I not thinking about as a whitemail and to be able to look at myself and say, okay, howcould I think about this differently? How could I better educate myself? Ithink there's a lot of people, whether it's companies or individuals like myself,that are trying to take this as a moment to say I need to learnmore about this, and I think the term ally for me, really resonatesof I need to become an ally to this. So that's I'll start theresaying that. That's, you know, some of maybe my recognition post theevent that, you know, I wish I had previously, but I cansay, Hey, it's better to have now and hopefully, you know,I can change brand. I got a question or again, like part ofthe point of this talk is to is to try and air some things thatmaybe get lost and translate and on social media, you know, or onLinkedin, where we've seen people kind of come out with some strident posts andsay, you know, here's how the world is or here's how I thinkabout it, and then a lot of controversial comments and things like that.But I'm going to I'm going to speak on the have of some Group ofpeople that their initial reaction was when they saw windows being shattered, when theysaw not just protest but violence, and they said, why, how doesthis advance the cause of racial equality or racial deft? And let's not startwith breaking windows or break it or smashing storefronts. Why is that? Youknow, because I I learned a lot from having comp in even just from, you know, our prep called for this. Why is that not theright way to think about it, or why is that a flawter? Orwhat is that missing? What perspective, because I do think it's missing quitea lot. What's your perspective on that? Yeah, so I think there's maybemultiple takes on this question, but it's important one. You know,one view that I had really kind of early on was, you know,we're conflating a multitude of problems and people are in rage for a number ofreasons. And you know we had a...

...situation with George Floyd and yes thatyou know, I had people that had a call to action. But atthe same time, you know, when you look at what was happening inMay and June, there was a huge economic situation that we were dealing withas well, and we're this prolonged period of separation from other human beings andthere's just a lot going on in the world and you certainly see a lotof unhappy people as well, and so sometimes a spark may ignite a biggerfire than maybe what the source was originally intended to and I think we insociety, in certainly in the media, we conflated a lot of issues andjust pointed to one problem as that's the root cause and that, and myopinion, just wasn't the case. And I'm you know, certainly got someof my own proof and evidence. I participated in a number of protests herein the bay area, both in San Francisco and in Oakland, and inevery case they were all incredibly peaceful and to the extent that the organizers repeatedlysaid that if you are here to do damage or destruction to the neighborhoods,we're going to get you out of here because that's not what we're here for. We're here to draw attention to something that's incredibly important to us, andso I found that to be very frustrating when you watched the news and youstarted to see the terminology of the riots associated with black lives matter or GeorgeFloyd, and that just wasn't the case, based on my own experience of actuallybeing out there in the communities, of participating in these conversations, andso I think there was a discrepancy and I think people just wanted a pointto, you know, an issue that was in front of them and sayhere's the root cause. And I do have you know in some cases itwas offended by that. And Davontee, I know you had a really interestingcommentary around that as well. So certainly want to open that question up toyou also. Yeah, I mean I think you know, when you saythis idea of like it's started with kind of like looting or riding or smashingwindows, I don't think that was the beginning. That was actually the kindof the culmination of a lot of other activities and efforts that were attempted right. I think if we can all kind of look back to you know,folks were peacefully protesting, folks were kneeling and nothing was happening, folks weremarching and nothing was happening. So I think it's like the position that wefound ourselves in when, when, you know, the the riots were happening, really was the sum of we tried all these other things and nothing actuallyhappened. And you know, we briefly touched on this. It's it's interestingbecause until those things happened and no one really wanted to have these conversations.So I don't think that it's the individual items that may have been taken orthe specific windows that were smashed and so on. I think it's the culminationof look at look at the extent of how things had to go for peopleto take this problem seriously and say, okay, what's going on? Right? It was like that, that wake up call, you know. AndI think to go back to just the first question, in terms of viewsin America and how it's changed, you know, since George Floyd, Iactually do feel hopeful because it seems like we've been able to sustain these effortsin these conversations to usually something happens. It gets picked up by the media, there may be a march or two, you may have some people go on, you know, certain new channels and kind of speak their different pieces, and then that's it, and then no one talks about it anymore.So the fact that we're still focused on having these conversations and trying to pushthe conversation forward, to me is a sign that's really hopeful. Yeah,I agree. I mean just to speak for myself, I mean that's whatit made a big difference for me to think about Colin Kaepernick and to thinkabout so many different people peacefully protesting and seeing nothing happen and and actually readinga little bit of resource that says that's that sometimes violent movements actually have aneffect the most change in the most in the quickest amount of time, atleast in this country. And that may be thinking about the violence itself isnot. Is Not the point per se, but it's just a reflection to yourpoint, Duvante, about a level of latent rage, you know,and just frustration that exists within the black community. You know that that sometimesme as a as a white guy. I'm just not. I'm not awareof you know, and I'm not aware of what it feels like to likeI said when we talked on the podcast about I'm just not aware of whatit feels like to go into a store and he feel like I'm doing satout or be pulled over for no reason for driving the speed limit or whateverit may be. So I think maybe it has, maybe these things haveshocked people and made them more awake to what's actually happening. What do youall think about there's a secondary conversation and it's never clear to me what thepoint of it is, but I think the point of it is to undermine, undermine certain people's passion in some way. But the point of it is thisis all in authentic. You know...

...that guys like Sam or Robert orwhoever are out there on linkedin talking about whatever, making a donation of blacklives matter or they're they're trying to steem important, but they don't really meanit, and that that's, you know, it's that's ineffective and I'm looking forsincere allies and sincere supporters and I don't believe that the people that areall changing the logo of their company are sincere. What do you what doyou all think about that? I I mean, I think every every timeyou start something new, you kind of feel like a poser, right,it could be trying to get into golf, or maybe you're trying to work outmore, trying to become a better cook. Right, like in thebeginning it always feels like I don't belong here, what's going on? SoI think it's unfair to paint people as being in authentic when they're trying tostart becoming an ally. I also think that, separate from companies changing logos, I think when you do post that screenshot on twitter that says, Hey, I made this donation to black lives matter, and so I'm like,I think there's two ways you can look at it, and some people liketo go down the virtue signaling route. I go the opposite. I thinkyou're showing and telling your associate's, the people who look up to you,admire you and follow you, I'm standing for something. And when you thinkabout how dangerous it is to just sit on the sidelines, right, andthat's kind of how we've gone to the point in this country where we areright now, by people saying, well, this isn't really affecting me and Idon't want to necessarily change my position, so I'm not going to go outof my way to do anything different. Right. I would much rather someonesay, Hey, I actually made a donation to black lives matter,and maybe you need to say what the amount was. Right, maybe you'llneed to go that route, but just say hey, like, I actuallymade this donation and I want the people who respect me and who are mypeers to to know that I did this, because maybe that can spark additional conversations. Maybe someone calls you and says, Hey, it's Sam, like,I thought you did that and like I wouldn't do that. Why didyou do it? Right, and then you could have your own ecle conversationand begin to move the needle. But yeah, I think you're not opposeror not being an authentic you have to start somewhere and it's going to feeluncomfortable, it's going to be hard, but most things, especially for us, you know it's revenue leaders and revenue individuals. We know the hard thingsusually have the biggest reward on the other side. You know, I thinkthis is a really complex issue and there's not a silver bullet here right,and it does require people to be vulnerable and that's not always accepted with openarms, but I think it's important that people try and put themselves out there, and so I would encourage everyone to do whatever they feel is right,as long as it's a positive move in the right direction, regardless of howpeople react or whether or not people are accepting of it, because it's importantto be a first mover in this issue and it's also important to keep themomentum going. I think the thing that I'm recognizing and certainly concerned about isthat there are a lot of things that are not necessarily happening. You know, there was a moment of for stration. People reacted and acted out and therewas a lot of attention. But now, as we're getting into lateJuly and there's a lot of other things happening right now, the coronavirus rearingits head, this is now becoming a muted topic and that really really concernsme, and so you know, from my perspective, Sam, I thinkit's fair to call out hey, you know, maybe some people have goneout there and then they've maybe gotten pushed back or it's not been accepted.The way they've reacted to the situation doesn't matter right. If this is somethingthat moves you to take an action, please continue to take those actions becauseof the important that those actions keep happening. And so I would encourage anyone outthere that would feel anyanks to around, you know, reposting or participating ordonating, to not have those emotions because it's a very important to continueto have attention to the things that are happening now so this doesn't become anothersituation where it's just an expression of outrage and then the world gets back toliving. And so that, I think. That's my reaction to that that questionand conversation. I think that's a great point. You know, ifI look at myself, you know there's one concrete step that I've done andone that I look forward to working with Sam and the rest of revenue collectiveon. So the one concrete step that I did was on three of ourteam calls after George Floyd's murder, I talked about race and that those areactually the first balls, you know, I've been a sales leader since twothousand and six that I've ever talked about race on a sales call. Thendoing that, you know, was uncomfortable, but to me it was important formy team to hear my views and I don't think I would have donethat five years ago or previously. And then second is, you know,working with revenue collective and revenue collective of color on a hiring pledge. Tome, you know, revenue collective represents two thous growth stage companies and companiesof all shapes and sizes, but you know, these companies can be muchmore nimble and can really put their collective actions make a big difference in arelatively short amount of time the amount of...

...people of color that they hire andspecifically the amount of black people that they hire, and so I think,you know, that could be something. If Sam and the leadership of revenuecollective and the four of us can get more and more companies behind, thenthat to me, like the cumulative effect could be massive. I think,Davante, in one of our earlier conversations you mentioned how someone said they weregoing to do these twenty different things and it's like wait, like let's tryto do a few things that matter and or sustained and can make a differenceover time. So that's an example of one thing I did, and thenI'm really excited to work with revenue collective on, you know, types ofpledges of companies. I think, Sam, we might be showing some data ofjust, you know, on the surveys we did, how low relativelyhiring people of color is today at a new collective which, to my knowledge, is the first time data like this has been collected for companies, youknow, like like the ones that are members. Yeah, yeah, we'llbe. I'm at the Bronte were a rubber sort of when I was justgoing to say that. I think the intentionality like that you pointed out.It has to be there. You know, there's there's racism as a whole inthis country. That is going to take a very long time to makeprogress on and I think we all see that marathon and we're all committed toit. But I appreciate that you pointed out like we work at pandemic asideand there's a lot going on, you know, from economic perspective, butwe work at these companies that scale so quickly. Right, you're at fiftyemployees in January and by November you've doubled in size, tripled in size.So I think that you can be intentional and very quickly change the the makeupof your team, which you know from a diversity of the you know,we've seen all the studies. I say more diverse teams perform well and soon. But also you'll become more welcoming. Right. I think the more yourteam reflects what the country looks like in the more diversified your team isand people are going to start to want to imbound and be a part ofthat team. So I think there's like this fly wiel that can start.You need to have this intentionality in the beginning and over time you'll just havea place where people from different backgrounds enjoy coming to work and want to bea reference and so on. But you have to be intentional in the beginning. Yeah, agree, and actually I would say that that intentionality has tobe persistent and consistent. If it's intentional and then you move on and nothingreally changes. We were talking about this a little bit yesterday, but ifyou kind of look at the amazing thing that happened for two thousand and fifteento now, for the kind of the Women's movement into Corporate America, wecan do to study last year and what they saw was there's actually a thirtyfour percent increase of women in leadership positions within Corporate America, and that requireda persistent intentionality, not just a once kind of movement. In now thisis kind of the movement to jure it's let's keep this going and let's let'shave momented behind this thing and let's make sure it continues to be a topicof discussion in board rooms and where we're hiring and who were hiring, andI think it's important. It's a very important conversation. I think it's timefor people to take this thing seriously. Brandon, wanted, and you weresaying, the thing that you made a point of when we were talking before, which I which I just Reson, you know, resonated with me,which was this idea that for some reason it's it was more it felt moreappropriate or more possible to say we're going to hire you know, we're done, these two positions are open on executive team and we're going to make surethat one out of the two of them is a woman. And I amnot aware that we've had that same deliberate openness about black people or people ofcolors. Say We've got an executive position open, we're going to make surethat we hire a person of color for that role. Maybe that's part ofwhat we need to start to the point of intention holiday and just saying hey, in the comment that I made, which could, you know, justwill be vulnerable and to acknowledge that we're not on perfect or I'm certainly notread in collective we have these city formations and we have chapter heads and wehave a rule that we're not going to have a new chapter head without afemale counterpart. And for some reason I felt completely comfortable saying that and Ihaven't been saying but I will going forward. There needs to be a person ofcolor on the leadership team of every city where we start a new chapterand that's just, you know, that resonated with me, like let's beas intentional about, you know, about diversity in all directions, not justgender diversity. And and I do want to be clear, like there's noway, shape or form, you know, do I believe, I think anyof you guys believe, that there's parity in the workforce when it comesto women in professional seats, but I think the really important thing is thatthere was and continues to be that intentionality to change it and it's something that'svery unapologetic and people are very comfortable having that conversation. But when it comesto people of Color, black professionals in the workforce, that same conversation,as far as you know I've been involved...

...in, is never really been somethingthat people are comfortable having that conversation with. So we had a few other questionsthat were there and I'm curious in terms of we're talking about organizations andI, you know, an individual contributor on this call, but you've alllead, or I've led teams. Can you talk about, you know,how corporate America can impact Social Justice? Right, so, in this particularmoment, what can companies decide to do? Right? So there's on one degree, each of you individually can sit down and say I want to makethese decisions for my team and you kind of have in your head, butwhat can be said in the board room with the rest of the sea suiteand the executive team to say, Hey, we need to get this type ofcommitment going? So taking it from something that you're individually trying to doas a leader or maybe your segment of the business and opening and saying youknow, the company can actually come forth and we can make a difference.Well, I think, Duvante, you know, we were talking about itbefore. There's this phrase I saw on twitter, you know, either hireor wire, which is the point of you know, either higher people ofColor directly and make that a commitment, or fund and invest in black andpeople of color entrepreneurs so that those companies can get off the ground. Ithink that's one part of what needs to happen, is just actual tangible commitments. You know, Duvante, you you were talking before offline about how andit also doesn't just need to be coquipment right. It doesn't just need tobe like junior level highers, but that there's people of color at all levelsof seniority that can come into an organization. I think one thing would just needto make to happen is we need to make hiring commitments. And thenI think there's probably just like an ongoing educational gap and and somehow destigmatizing theconversation itself, which is part of what we're trying to do so that issuescan serve face more easily. I guess I'm that sort of my perspective.I don't know what you all think. Yeah, I think you guys,is good. Only thing I'd add is, you know, one thing I wasvery excited to see from recent events was that it seemed like as morecompanies put out public statements in support of groups like black lives matter social justice, than that pressured other companies to do the same. And I don't rememberseeing that, whether it was traded on, Martin, Eric Garner any other timesthat this has come up, I don't remember seeing where was such apush of corporate America doing the same thing at the same time of talking aboutthat and to me like that really matter. So I totally agree. Like,as an individual manager, what can I do directly? I can hiremore people of color. I can, and I know we'll get to this, I can, you know, be more intentional about making sure that I'minterviewing more black people or people of color. But then, I think secondarily,like having more companies do this and make statements about it, that alladds up where you have more and more CEO's that talk about this and andthat to me really filters down to the decisions that that all their managers andVP's make. Yeah, I think there's this kind of scapegoating of it's apipe rhyme problem. We don't have enough candidates of color to actually move theneedle. What I'd say to that is if you look at the trajectory orincrease of black Americans, what they college education, that number is increasing ata much larger rate than the actual populations of black Americans and professional workforce.And so I would say that's that's not necessarily true based on data. Right, if you're seeing a, you know, far more percentage of black African Americanswith a professional college degree or at least a bachelor level, they're notseeing the numbers change at that same magnitude, then that means you we're just notgetting it a see at the table and that's, I think, abig problem that needs to change. Yeah, I also think that I'm not afan of kind of going in line with with Sam's Vulnera really earlier.Like I hate the idea that people think that diversity inclusion efforts means lowering thebar for the quality of talent, that you're going higher, like that's Ithink that's ridiculous. You know, if you're if you have a job descriptionjust in general that requires, you know, three years of experience and a codinglanguage that is, you know, eighteen months old like that needs tobe changed, right. But in terms of looking for talent, you're notlowering the bar when you were hiring a person of color. You don't needto lower the bar when you decide to put these initiatives together, and Ithink that's that's a something I feel strongly about. Be You know, Ithink that's a conversation that happens behind closed doors, that no one really,you know, discusses. And in Sam to go back to your point ofhiring or wiring, I don't know how I feel about that, because Ifeel like for some organizations they have enough, you know, capital where like theycan wire in. That's that's why I did it, like I'm Igave you money and someone else can figure out how to fix it right,instead of figuring out like I'm going to do that part, but I'm alsogoing to make a commitment right, and it seems like, you know,Roberts brought it up a few times. We can coming back to the commitments. So I'm excited to talk about,...

...you know, that initiative from revenuecollective, but I don't think it should be higher or wire. I thinkit needs to be higher and wire. Fair enough. Okay, Davante,you were mentioning you know, what's your perspective? We were talking about ityesterday. How do you feel if, if the companies do institute this initiativeand you and there's this there's sort of sort of like double edged there's thisweird feeling of like am I being singled out? Are they? Are theyoffer me this job because a black person, or did I actually qualify for it? If they specifically say, Hey, we're trying to hire more diversity,we're trying to harm more people of Color and, Davante, we wouldlove for you to apply to this job, and you were mentioning that you hadmixed emotions about that too, because you I mean, there's no goodthere's an easy answer to it, because on the one hand we're saying companiesneed to make these hiring commitments and on the other hand we're saying, butI also don't want to feel like they're just they're lowering their standards in anyway. They're not lowering their standards, they're just making a hiring commitment.How do you feel about that? Yeah, I mean you're definitely not lowering yourstandards if you hire me or if you hire another person of color,because the quick plug there. But I do think that there's this scenario thatis going to arise where you are a person of color and you're offered therole and you know the company is trying to bring on more people of Color, and I think that is you know, it's a scenario that I personally haven'thad the face yet, but I don't know what I would do rightand I think the big piece of that is me openly saying to you all, on to everyone listening, I don't know a lot of the things thatwe're dealing with. It's very vague and ambiguous and we don't know. Youknow, there's the there's the kind of follow through. So now you getbrought on board and everyone knows the company made a statement in May that theywanted to hire more people of Color, and then you get hired in June. Everyone know who is that? Like? You were hired as one of thepeople who are supposed to move the needle on diversity. Are you nowa token within the company? Are you now the face of all the AfricanAmericans or the people of Color in the company. Are you expected to domore than your job right which? I don't know if you were going toget to this, brandon, but a lot of the time we see individualcontributors or people that don't have a tremendous amount of power right now, inthese past three or four months, they're the ones asking to look at apress release before it goes out. They're the ones that are being asked likehey, we want to say this, but can you make sure this isgoing to be okay? So there's a lot that comes with you know,knowing a company is trying to bring on and add diversity in the you beingthat person that I wish I could speak to from an experience of pro purseperspective. These are me just making assumption. So maybe that's someone will bring onto the call. But yeah, I don't I don't really know whatyou're supposed to do when you find yourself in that particular moment. Yeah,I mean there's kind of a few reactions that I have to this conversation.You know, one, I do think there's a huge nepotism is issue inthe startup community. It's really hard to break into those circles and when youtalk about high growth companies, many times, right, it's kind of a bandof pirates that move from ship to ship and it's really hard to geton to that pirate crew if you're not, you know, of that Ilk.And so I think there's, you know, maybe something to be saidaround Hey, you know, me, as a founder, the next timeI start to think about who are those five or ten people that I wantto bring into my garage, maybe I need to have some reflection to say, hey, I want to have a different type of company this next timearound and I'm going to be proactive around you know who's a part of thatfounding organization. And I think those types of conversations need to happen, certainlywith this community at revenue collective, but I do think there's a big issueboth here and Silicon Valley and certainly New York, as New York is growingvery rapidly in terms of turning out very successful startups and companies, and thoseare the roles that really move the needle in terms of an economic situation.Right, those are the people that actually get higher share of equity and thoseare the people that actually have, you know, higher return investment from spendingtheir time and energy growing and building a company, and so I'd say youknow, next time that you know anyone on this call is looking to startto the build that founding team, make sure that team looks like America andnot just the same folks that you kind of, you know, went wentback to the same well, Davan say you and I have had some reallypersonal conversations over the last month and I think you're referring to one conversation thatyou and I had around a situation where I had a recruiter within our firmsending me a tremendous amount of resumes and, quite frankly, they all looked thesame, and so I got access to our linkedin recruiter account also tremendousamount of people of color with it that it's submitted applications for organization that,for whatever reason, didn't make it through. I don't believe that person was racistwhatsoever, but I do believe unconscious bias does play a huge role.And who goes from that recruiter list to now? WHO's kind of in mypurview of people that I want to actually have a phone call with, andso I do think it just takes you...

...know, for people to recognize that, hey, if I know I got ten resumes and they all look thesame, why don't I go back in and see what else is going onthere if there's a way that I can actually be a part of the solutionas opposed to just accepting whatever my fall into my inboxes as far as potentialcandidates for a role. And to that point, I hope there's a fewthings, you know, just with revenue of collective color that we could do, like for me, like one simple step to this would be next timemy team has an open position posted in revenue collective of color first and tryto get some amazing kididates. Try to get to know or great revenue leaderslike yourself and Davante, so that you from the start like you're not justgetting referrals from your employees, that you know those referrals are going to tendto be more white. So I think there's some you know, hopefully themore that revenue collective grows and the more that revenue collective of color grows,the more that it's just that much easier to have a great pipeline first,and I think Davante and some of our conversations you've talked about, like companyshouldn't just solve diversity by hiring more SDRs or more entry level talent. Youknow, there's talented account executive, talented revenue leaders, and those people existand I think as leaders of organizations you just need to be more intentional ofseeking that out. And it's not like you need to do twenty extra steps. There's some pretty scalable things like posting and revenue collective of color that Ithink really benefit. Yeah, I mean I think we're all uniquely suited doingworse sales people. We know how to hunt and convince right, like weknow the tools are out there and ways to go look for people. It'sjust, you know, kind of setting aside the time to do so.And Brennan, when you mentioned earlier, they had like the pirate crew goingfrom ship to ship. You know, I think about this notion of youcan't really start something new with a diverse group of people if you don't knowanyone right, if you don't interact with, you know, people of Color ona regular basis outside of work, and I think that was one ofthe things, you know, we briefly talked about yesterday and, like Ifeel strongly about. Is like solving for racism, but also kind of solvingfor the injustices in the workplace. That can be nine to five. Soyou can't, you know, from not am to five PM, say likelisten, I want to hire more people of Color, I want to makethis team more diverse, and then five pm comes you like all right,back to my life, my world, where I do not interact with peopleof color, you know, and I don't know how to solve for that, but I do think that's something for you know, everyone that's listening andon the call to think about. Is like, are you actually trying tojust do this because you think it's the right thing and do within the workplace, or are you able to plug it into the bigger picture of America andfigure out how can you, you know, interact with more people so that whenyour company does something awesome and IPOs and you have this huge inflex capitaland you want to start something new, now you know the people that youcan go, you know, start that next venture with. That's why ICheer Point Dante. That's why it's such a loaded and kind of for somepeople. So it's a dangerous topic because you want to make sure, becauseof this fact, that you don't. I don't want you to feel likewe're friends because I need to check off a box that I have x numberof black friends in my life, but I also don't want that I andI don't want you to feel like you're the representative or spokesperson for all blackmen in America. But I also do probably have questions that I want toask you about your experience so that I can find common ground without exhausting youwith the weight of being the spokesperson right, and you can in you just beingyou, and I think that's you know, we were talking about likedestigmatizing the conversation and just finding some way where it's not we're not also,or at least I'm not, you know, terrified, or terrifies not the rightword, but just nervous about about making sure that I don't do somethingthat might be interpreted in the wrong way. It also not doing things that areoffensive. You know, it's sort of like this the whole time we'reworking at the news. I wanted to make sure that I always wanted tomake sure that you felt comfortable and that you felt like there was a careerpath for you and that you felt, but I also didn't want to makeyou feel like you are probably already felt like, Hey, you're only blackman on the team. You know, it's like this very the and wewere we've been talking about it, but I know my goal, my hope. I think what we all want is we all want we all want raceto be less an issue. You know, we want ten years from now,we just want company. I we talked about and again, I wassaying this yesterday. You know, I think England as a country, theUnited Kingdom is a country, has a lot of problems with race. Butwhen you go to London specifically, it just feels very different to see thedifferent culture, like we're just a lot more diversity on the street and it'snot even commented on. It doesn't seem to be as big a deal asit is in the United States and I...

...want our country to be like thatat some point. But it feels like to get to that point we needto be able to talk about it a little bit more openly. I don'tyou know which is which is challenging, because there's always a fear that you'regoing to you're going to step on the wrong land mine. And and allof a sudden you've entered into an area where you said something ignorant or uneducatedand and now now you're in, you know, now you're in the badthing. Yeah, I mean that's the whole point of this conversation, right. The four of us are not DNI experts. We're not going to gostarter consultancy that help you, you know, do X Y Z projects. Right. The point is we're having a conversation that can be awkward and we'retrying to figure out how to navigate it. And, you know, we decided, the four of us, that we want to set an example forother people to have these conversations. We want to create worlds where, youknow, we have, you know, over a hundred people in the revenue, you know, collective alle community, and then, you know, anothersubset of folks that are in the revenue collective, the color community, andlike, okay, great, now we have these safe faces and we havethese people who have raised their hand and said they want to advocate. Thatmeans to bring them together, right, and have more of these conversations andbreak out groups and so on. So I think like that is the reasonwhy we're here, is because we want to set the example of people goingout of their way to be uncomfortable, to be vulnerable, because that's howyou grow, you know. So I appreciate you saying that, but Ithink this in itself is an example of US trying to figure out what thatnext step is. I don't know if you or you ran in a Robert, would have anything there. I think you nail the good will say.So a good, good point is I know we all took some time toprepare, but how did you feel coming into this conversation, Sam, Ithink you kind of alluded to it, so I don't know if you wantto give, you know, Robert or brandon a chance to speak up atwhat were your thoughts and how did you, you know, prepare for this conversation? One I was really happy to see Sam and the revenue collective takeon this issue, and this is certainly not the only thing that's happening withinrevenue collective to help you kind of advance this conversation, and so I thinkit's an important one to have. Really encouraged by the amount of attention andsupport this community is giving this issue. And the thing that, yeah,Sam and I had a conversation, you know, really quickly after the GeorgeFloyd murder incident, just around the power of the community within revenue collective andI think there's certainly a lot of folks that are in hiring positions that areprobably on this call that can make a difference, and so it's great tobring awareness. It's awesome that people having an ear and are listening and hearingthings from a different perspective and now it's time to kind of put things inaction. But it does start with having some conversations like this too, tomake sure you know the the momentum is building and not kind of dining down, as I alluded to earlier in the conversation. Yeah, I mean theonly thing I'll add is I think you know, just like Sam gave theexample of, you know, chapter heads and the change that he's going tomake after, you know, recognizing that. You know, I could think ofother examples. For me, we're to your point, Brandon. Youknow, five years back when lots of companies are like, okay, weneed more temail executives, and I remember being at a company and we had, I think, ten people that were on the website and only one ofthose ten was a woman and we're like, should we take our pictures down?You know, what do we do? Do we put her at the top, like but all throughout that conversation we didn't acknowledge the fact that allten of us were white and that there was no person of color. Andso I think you know that awareness and as leaders of revenue collective saying okay, you know, I can do better. For me to say, if Ilook back at by fourteen years as a sales leader, I don't thinkI'd defied myself as an ally, but that doesn't mean I can't change andand become one. Meant to say, you know, I could do better. So and to say that, you know, we have, whatever itis, a hundred and ten people listening live and this will be on apodcast and I can say that to everyone and hopefully, you know, lotsmore people can recognize. Okay, like I can do small things that allof that, you know, really adds up to something, hopefully very big, and I would just underscore. And then we've got about fifteen minutes maybein there have been a lot of questions and we should probably, you know, look to look to address them, but you know, for me itcomes back to to your point, Robert, and to everybody's point. You gotto put down the fear a little bit and you got to put downthe fear of somebody on Linkedin telling you that your opposer or that you're fakeor that it's performative or that you've worked through signaling. You, guys,start somewhere and you got to do something. Yes, it's often not enough,but it's off sin at least it's a start, and I think that'sjust part of what we all have to do is just accept that everybody's tryingto improve, trying to change, trying to get better, as opposed tosaying, well, you know, they...

...made that post. I don't.I don't really think that they believe it. You know, or that's not enough. Changing the logo of the your company or changing the background of yourprofile picture on twitter is not enough. Agreed. That that it's not enough. Agreed, but we also don't want to shame people for taking initial steps. For them that might be difficult. I don't know if y'all agree,but that's my perspective. I think. I think the concept real quick soapboxes, this word virtue signaling is a very dangerous partnership word and it's and it'sand it's probably more toxic than than than the actual actions that it chooses toascribe or describe, because all people are doing when they're virtue signaling is they'retrying to put what they think is a positive message out into the world andthen they're being undermined by people where they're not living up to some arbitrary standard, and I just think we all got to like check ourselves a little bitthat if people are trying and making an effort, then that's there's a lotof people that aren't trying and aren't making an effort. So we can't shamethe people that are trying and are making an effort or how I've changed theirminds or are taking initial steps. If we want to encourage that, that'swhat we want. So that's just my perspective. I agree you got tostart somewhere. I know you want to hop into questions. I did wantto discover one last thing, very brief it was. It was a questionI like, which was, you know, what do you think you can personallydo? I think we've talked a lot about what our companies can doas a whole what we can do as individuals working for organizations. But Ithink a really good, good place before we bump into questions, is whatcan you know we personally do to impact this movement and how would you measureyour success? Yeah, so me personally, I'm dedicating a lot more time thatI want to carve out for mentorship. Davante, we had a conversation withinthe our CEOC community a few weeks back and there was just, youknow, a void or a vacuum of mentorship. You know, when peopleof Color, you get into two positions of leadership within these organizations, they'reoften times, isn't that arm, you know, to kind of reach backand start to pull people up? And so for me personally, I'm definitelydedicated and want to carve out a lot more time to figure out ways toto, you know, share my brain with folks, to help them thinkabout their career and how do they advance themselves. And so from a personalperspective, I think that's something that's important to me and in certainly I thinkcan make a difference on a personal level. I'll go next. For me personally, I think it's really working with Sam and Devante you and Brandon onon the pledge. You know, I think at a high level we've talkedabout you know, if an organization can pledge to have a twenty five percentincrease and they're the hiring of people of Color and specifically black people, Ithink if you get a hundred companies to do that, accumulative effect of thatis hundreds of highers that might not have been made because companies are more intentionalabout what they're doing. That fun thing I prepoe to working with with everyoneon in the coming few months. For me, I mean it's it's someof the things that we're doing right. I want to make sure this isn'tthe only time we have this conversation. I want to make sure that thenext time we have the next epot in this series as women that are participating, because I think that a black woman's experience is still even different than ablack man's experience and I want to make sure that we're hearing from all perspectives. I also want I'm really inspired by Brandon story from money was growing upin Michigan was all about. You went to the guidance counsel in high schooland they said, you know, you enjoin the Army, you can becomea cop income social worker, you know, and that the army recruiters down thehall so happy to go. Like why do we go baying me moneyto, you know where she's Bay me money to sign you up. AndI really want to build mentor short programs that reached people earlier in their lives, not just when they're coming out of Undergrad but when they're coming out ofhigh school or in high school, and I want to use revond collector todo that and they departner or with my mentor and the brother Big Sister Organizationof America and really try and just spread the word that, like, Hey, there are more possibilities than maybe people are presenting to you. There aregreat careers and technology sales. You don't have to be a developer. Noneof us know. You know, I don't know how to have had acode, and yet you can have a tremendous amount of value that these plays. So that's something I'm particularly passionate about, besides just continuing to both create contentbut also make sure that the content that we have that's not about racefeatures diverse stations on it that, when you know it's a conversation about acompanies marketing. It's not always just a white man that different people from differentperspectives are always featured, even when we're not talking about race, especially whenwe're not fucking about race. Yeah, so our companies are part of theUS Travel Association, which comprised of the majority of the major travel companies withinthe United States. So Mary I,...

United Disney, all of these bigbrands participate, as well some financial services industries like American Express and JP Morganthat, you know, really work within the travel industry to provide commerce opportunities, and so they were really getting involved in the diversity and inclusion conversation,particularly as it relates to to black people of participating in that economy. Notnext Friday, but the following I've been invited to actually sit down with theboard of directors, which is a hundred and sixty people. See Level ofa love and you know, we're going to put it together a game planon how we solve for this within travel industry. So quite excited about thatand hopefully I'll be able to share some great things with the revenue collective communityaround those opportunities once that conversation happens. And I think that you know,things like that and having those types of conversations can make a difference at areally large scale. So very excited about that opportunity and to do think thetravel industry, just giving how robust that is. Certainly you know, whenwe start to rebound out of covid could open up a tremendous amount of economicopportunities for people of Color. Awesome, Sam. Were there any questions thatwere sent in that you wanted to ask the group? Yeah, well,I you know, again it's sort of relating to this is an important one. How can an HR department facturationalversity into their higher position without violating title seven, and I think that's something we've talked about it. Was It rout hoops, Robert? Did you have some specific data there, and so sort oflike guidance or how how it can think about this? Sure, so ata high level, you know, companies can and are encouraged to get morediversity in their application. So if you think of diversity conferences like a gracehopper, if you think of building relationships with HBCUS, if you think of doingwhatever you can as an organization to get more diverse candidates to apply for yourrole. That is a hundred percent legal, that is a hundred percent encouraged.Once the application and is made. As an employer you're supposed to beblind to someone's gender or ethnicity. But in terms of getting more candidates toapply as well as I think I saw it somewhere in the chat, reallycollecting data in your ATS system and understanding, okay, if, let's say athird of my applications are people of Color, put only ten percent ofmy highers or people of color, than what's happening in my interview process forthat to be the case, and understanding why that is and fixing that.But I think if its company is works to get more amazing candidates in theirfunnel and works to look at the data, then then hopefully the magic can happenfor more companies and who make more diverse highres. I also saw somethingin to chat about into retension. I think the more diverse highres you're goingto make and the more you train your company about diversity and inclusion, thenit's going to be a lot easier to retain employees. There's a there's areally first of all, just FY we can only have four video sources.So I wasn't able to do a screen Chare, but I did post ina presentation which is the results of a survey that we ran the week ofJune ten. That just talks about some that has some data in it thatI think sopefully, what we want to change. If you look at slideeleven, what percent of your team, your immediate team, consists of peopleof color? You included, and we see that twenty three percent it waszero, and fifty five percent it was, you know, under twenty five percent. And so I think one of the the things we can do justto make a difference is let's run this in three months and six months andand twelve months see these numbers change and hopefully, especially this zero percent numberchange. And Scott, you know you said could the size of the challengelead corporations to apathy? I think that's why, that's why these hiring commitmentsare so important, because we're not asking to change the entire world. We'resaying, like, let's make an impact on the specific percentage. Last pointI'll say is Tommy from Amsterdam says I spoke with another member who is takingissue with unpaid internships. When she's coming out of college. She felt likeshe was at a disadvantage because her life was not allowing her to get thestep forward because we did not have the resources to fund this. Could Changein policy on unpaid internships to be away for companies to hire and wire,and I just want to sort of like plus one hundred that unpaid internships arereally just a filtering mechanism for people that come from money, and that's why, if you want to break into fashion, to take it on paid internship.If you want to work at x y froom place, you take anunpaid internship, and all that means is that you have money from some otherplace. So I also think we should take a stand against unpaid internships.If you're going to have people doing stuff for you, you should pay themto do it, in my opinion. Yeah, wanted to shopping there withlike a personal story. So obviously you know I've been a higher manager andI know it's great when you can see someone studied abroad or where someone wentto school. And the two quick things I'll say is, in terms ofsomething very simple like study abroad, I was pretty much like heartbroken my sophomoreyere I got accepted into this program to...

...go and stay in Spain for twomonths and I literally created a Gofund me to try to get people to raisemoney to send me to Spain and I didn't raise enough money so I couldn'tgo. And like it was. You know, I try to put agood spin on it and you know, facebook wasn't this crazy back then,so I was like trying to, you know, get cousins and aunts anduncles and friends and family to help me do that. But, like,you know, it's kind of embarrassing looking back. But I also think thatif someone else's, you know, resume is very much identical to mine,but they were able to go do that unpaid internship or they were able togo, you know, do that study abroad, like now, they're standingout and it's solely because of you know, economic differences. And the other thingI'd say is when you start thinking about schools that people went to,write like my I was, you know, my mom got pregnant with me hersenior year of high school. I was born that summer after she graduated. But my dad originally was supposed to go and run track in Arizona rightand you know, he ended up going to Seaton Hall and stay in localand I did as well, but his entire life was changed. You know, he's still ended up being able to go to college, but he couldn'tkind of go as far I'm and have like a better, you know,school on his resume because of, you know, some some things that youknow affected him growing up. So I think it's just like I think theconversation would go on for a very long time, but there's so many differentpieces of what ends up on someone's resume that we just don't know and don'tknow how to ask. You know, there's some and called a chronological interviewwhich, like you, ask everyone, why'd you make this decision? Whydid you do that? But like what if someone doesn't want to tell youI actually chose to go to ruckers over Xyz school because, like I hadto take care of my little sister or something like that. So, youknow, again, conversation that can go deeper another day, but just thatthat point really resonated with me a lot folks. It's about twelve fifty PM. Really appreciate everybody that joined. This session is immediately available for rewatching byjust the same link. You can just the same link works as a DVRand there's going to be we're going to do more of these and we're goingto feature different perspectives and different speakers, not just not just us. Brandon, if folks want to get in touch with you, let's just go aroundand just drop some contact information in case anybody wants to reach out to anybodyon this. Call Brandon. What's a good email, adjeft for your folkswant to contact you? Yeah, Brandon, Bra and Deo and Dot Myers andEy erst a daacom or linkedin in backslash Myers. Be Awesome. Davante, your you've got a RS email address. You want to use that one orwhich one you wanting. Is enough to kind of remember what my linkis from a moment early, but you can reach me. What it comesto our COOC at, Davante, Dva Nte at Revenue Collectivecom and if youwant to connect with me or learn about how slack can help Your Business,is collaborating and no sullies, the more effective. For Yeah, linkedincom in, Davante, Luis Sex. Awesome, Robert Great, my email is ourdaniel a way up. Our Daniel it way up and you can find meon Linkedin. Robert Daniel, love to connect, awesome, and I'm stamat Revenue Collectivecom we're going to be doing more of these. We recognize thatdiversity doesn't just means skin color, but it means gender, means, frankly, age. There's all kinds of different ways that we want to bring differentperspectives to bear within revenue quick thank you all for joining us and you'll hearfrom us for the next event and thanks to my fellow panelist. Hi everybody. That was the awkward conversation with myself, Brandon Myers, devante Lewis Jackson andRobert Daniel. We've got many more coming in terms of this series,including, of course, featuring women, since it's hard to talk about diversityand inclusion if you're not featuring people that are that are identifying as women oreven non binary people. So we're going to make sure that the participants infuture conversations reflect gender equality, not just racial equality. But we hope youenjoyed it. We've got a lot of more special bonus podcast episodes coming upfrom the revenue collective podcast featuring some of the great content of some of thegreat events that were hosting that you may have missed, so just subscribe,give us five stars on Itunes if you can, and be on the lookoutfor for more great sessions. Thanks so much for listening.

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