With Juneteenth right around the corner, we are reminded of the importance of freedom, diversity, equity, and inclusion — and the dangers of a world without them.
Special holidays like Juneteenth give us the ability to celebrate race and culture together, and they are an example of the progress we have made in the fight for a better world. But there is still so much more to do, and progress comes from a year-round celebration.
That’s why PowerToFly’s All Year Long Series focuses on carrying the spirit of these dedicated times throughout the rest of the year. We are devoted to being a part of that progress and want to ensure that the underrepresented feel uplifted, heard, and included — no matter the day or month!
As part of our All Year Long Series, we are amplifying Black voices by sharing some past talks on race, inclusion, history, and equity.
These talks deliver powerful messages of movement and change and feature Black voices speaking up about racism and inequality in the workplace and beyond, the changes that have been made, and the changes that must still occur.
Check out our list to keep the progress and celebration going all year long, and to help spread awareness!
Sista Circle: Celebrating Black Women In Tech - Featuring Leaders From Meta, Google, And Bank Of America
If you want to learn from some of the top tech leaders, then this is for you! PowerToFly partners with Sista Circle: Black Women In Tech to celebrate, learn from, and be inspired by some amazing Black women leaders in the tech industry. This talk discusses the power of technology to create safe communities of solidarity, the need for mentors to help young Black women navigate the tech world, the racial and gender inequality in the tech industry, the importance of mental health and self-care for Black women in the professional realm, and much more. Featuring Lexi B (Founder of Sista Circle: Black Women in Tech), Michelle Mitchell (Strategic Communities Program Manager, Media Partnerships at Meta), Dr. Chyna Hill (Sr. User Experience Researcher at Google), Yan Lawrence (Quantitative Analyst at Bank of America), and Isabel Cespedes (Creative Director of Sista Circle: Black Women in Tech), this powerful talk shows both the rise in Black women leaders and the need for continual change in the tech industry to better achieve diversity, equity, and inclusion. This conversation is presented in partnership with Sista Circle and Pickens Creative.
In this riveting talk, PowerToFly’s Sienna Brown sits down with New York Times bestselling author Julie Lythcott-Haims to discuss her memoir Real American. In her book, Julie talks about her journey from self-loathing to self-love as a Black and biracial woman living in predominantly white spaces in 1970s America, and how in sharing her path to self-acceptance she also discovered the healing power of community in overcoming the hurtful isolation she experienced in being incessantly considered "the other."
History, race, and identity – three powerful words that can invoke different emotions. In this talk, Camille T. Dungy, author of the personal essay collection Guidebook to Relative Strangers, joins Nadia Owusu, author of the memoir Aftershocks, for a thoughtful conversation on how their works overlap on these three themes and the powerful testament they share for what racism looks like today.
Very little is more powerful today than the media. That’s why DeShuna Spencer founded KweliTV, a Black-owned video streaming service that showcases indie films, documentaries, web shows, news, and children’s programs dedicated to the stories, issues, and culture of the global Black community. But in this interview hosted by David Morgan, President of The Multicultural Media & Correspondents Association, DeShuna and Kweli’s Head of Comedy Programming acclaimed actor and comedian Lil Rel Howery, share candid insights into the challenges KweliTV faces trying to achieve sustainability and scale in the competitive streaming industry still bereft of culturally diverse content and content creators, and the overarching cultural importance of consuming diverse Black stories. This conversation is presented in partnership with MMCA.
Maybe you find out your white colleague is making more money than you, even though you've been working there longer and do the exact same job; or maybe you hear your boss commit yet another microaggression. Whatever the catalyst, you finally decide enough is enough. But when you talk to someone about your experiences, you’re told it's all in your head... What do you do? How do you respond when your lived experiences of racism in the workplace are denied or ignored? In this talk, PowerToFly’s Global DEI Strategist and Trainer, Noelle Johnson, provides space to acknowledge the harm these experiences cause and shares tools and tips for preserving your mental health and well-being while getting your desired outcome.
February is Black History Month and June 19th is Juneteenth – two times of the year that special emphasis is placed on the Black community in the United States. But how can we Amplify Black Excellence and Elevate Black Employees all year long? Join PowerToFly’s Senior Director of DEIB, Sienna Brown, and Thumbtack’s Global Head of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Dionna Smith, as they discuss how leadership and professional development opportunities can amplify Black excellence. What pitfalls should you avoid when elevating Black employees? How does psychological safety play a key role in performance and retention? Learn how to create a better atmosphere of diversity and inclusion with two leaders in the DEI industry!
Thanks to Black Lives Matter, a powerful and necessary conversation has resulted in real change. But how do we keep that momentum moving forward? Join Dionna Smith (Thumbtack’s Global Head of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion), Candace Ramirez (Founder/Content & Branding Export at Moon Honey Media), Suzanne Sheely-Walker (Facilitator/Talent Consultant), Andrea Hall (Senior Global Diversity and Inclusion Manager at Thermo Fisher Scientific), and Mira Stern (Equity & Impact Consultant) as this impressive group of women leaders tackle such important topics as anti-racism, inclusion, diversity, women's rights, and mental health in the workplace, and how the momentum of Black Lives Matter can help continue to spur change.
Did you know that a recent survey showed that Black transgender and gender non-conforming people face some of the highest levels of discrimination? Despite the continual push for diversity, equity, and inclusion today, there is so much work to be done. But how can we solve this problem? Moderated by Marti Allen-Cummings, drag artist and activist, this discussion features Aryah Lester (Deputy Director at Transgender Strategy Center), Diamond Stylz (Executive Director at Black Trans Women Inc.), and Carmarion D. Anderson (Alabama State Director, Project One America at the Human Rights Campaign) as they discuss the discrimination that the Black transgender community face, the effects that the anti-transgender bills of 2021 have on the transgender population and youth, how Black transgender and gender non-conforming people struggle to find work, and the continual need for support and inclusion that the community requires.
What does it take to organize a social justice movement? And how do you create change in a stubborn world? That’s what Alicia Garza, activist, organizer, and co-founder of Black Lives Matter, is joining Washington Post Pulitzer Prize-winning Robin Givhan to discuss. Host of Lady Don’t Take No podcast, author of The Purpose of Power: How We Come Together When We Fall Apart, and special projects director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance, Garza continues to fight against racial injustice and inequity as the principal at the Black Futures Lab and the Black to the Future Action Fund. By offering power and healing in community, she talks about the importance of coming together, individual experience, and the willingness to stand against injustice. This conversation is presented in partnership with The Washington Post.
This past year has seen unprecedented numbers of women of color – specifically Black women – leaving the workplace. Greater still, many more are considering leaving their jobs by the end of the year. The cause? For many of these women, feeling burnt out and wanting greater purpose in their careers is the biggest underlying factor. But what does that mean for the future of the workplace and the women of the Black community? In this insightful fireside chat, Rha Goddess, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of nFormation, CEO of Move The Crowd, and author of The Calling, and PowerToFly’s Senior Director of DEIB, Sienna Brown, discuss how Black women have the power to reimagine the future of their work. So what does that look like in this new reality? And how can they have a comeback that is aligned with their purpose and values? What will that comeback actually take? Join Sienna Brown and Rha Goddess to find out!
For the first time ever, we have a woman of color as Vice President and a Black woman nominated to the US Supreme Court. But while these are substantial achievements that should be celebrated, that doesn’t mean we don’t have a ways to go. According to the Human Rights Watch, “Black, Latinx, and Native communities have been disproportionately burdened by the negative impacts of Covid-19, which has deepened existing racial injustices in healthcare, housing, employment, education, and wealth accumulation. While poverty fell overall due to stimulus checks and unemployment aid, the Black-white wealth gap, which is still as big as it was in 1968, persisted.” So how do we change this injustice? Global Policy Solutions’ CEO Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings and APCO Worldwide’s Licy Do Canto sit down to discuss just this. In an insightful conversation about what’s truly working and what’s needed when it comes to racial equity in 2022, they share some steps that everyone listening can take to make a difference – even in your own backyard!
Meet Nicole, A Branch Manager at Morgan Stanley
Below is an article originally written by PowerToFly Partner Morgan Stanley. Go to Morgan Stanley's Page on PowerToFly to see their open positions and learn more.
As a young, black woman Nicole Dickerson knows she doesn't fit the typical image of a branch manager. Through her leadership at Morgan Stanley, Nicole shares how she's breaking stereotypes with her success.
Nicole Dickerson, selected by Morgan Stanley as a MAKERs in 2018, knows that she doesn't fit the typical image of a branch manager, and she's good with that. As a young, black woman heading up a fast-growing branch in one of Morgan Stanley's major markets, she sees herself as the reflection of a shifting corporate culture, both within the firm and throughout the financial services industry.
She is one of 17 outstanding professional women nominated by her peers and selected by Morgan Stanley executives to participate in MAKERS, a national program that identifies and celebrates accomplished professionals from a variety of fields and companies.
"Morgan Stanley is trying to broaden the face of leadership," says Nicole, Branch Manager of the Beverly Hills office. "There's so much predisposition in what we think a leader should look like that it's important to show the world that success can come in a multitude of shades and genders."
Nicole is a case in point. In 2007, she decided to change careers and was considering getting her MBA in finance. She went to a few university open houses to get a feel for their programs and heard a presentation on wealth management that sparked her interest.
At the time, Nicole had two friends working in the industry. One ran a hedge fund, and the other was an advisor with a large wealth management firm. The hedge fund manager told her he made big money by taking big risks. The wealth manager told her that he built his business by working with amazing clients who are now friends. "What I got was 'slow and steady wins the race,'" she says. "And that resonated with me."
So instead of going back to school to pursue her MBA, she took a massive cut in pay and responsibility to become an assistant at a financial services firm. That was in March of 2008, at the depths of the financial crisis. "I took one step backward so that I could take a thousand steps forward," she says.
When she became Branch Manager of the Beverly Hills office in 2016, Nicole faced two key challenges. The first was suddenly finding herself responsible for managing her former coworkers. The second was breaking down the silos that many of the branch's top Financial Advisors had built around their businesses.
The key to both was creating a culture of inclusivity and teamwork. "A consistent message of mine is that we are all in this together," she says. "Whatever decision we make, we are all going to have to stand behind it and believe in it."
Under that philosophy, no person or position is more important than any other, and everyone in the office shares responsibility for the branch's success. "With 54 Financial Advisors in this branch, I have realized that true success happens when Financial Advisors view all of their decisions through the lens of a shareholder," she notes.
Nicole has the added complexity of managing Financial Advisors who have been in the business longer than she's been alive. They also had been successfully running their practices on their own and weren't particularly interested in changing how they did things. "People who have been in this business for so long can develop a fixed mindset that their system is the best for themselves and their teams," she says.
With those blinders on, though, even well-entrenched Financial Advisors can miss the opportunities being created in a fast-changing world. So Nicole started chipping away at those silos by rolling up her sleeves to work as hard as they did to meet client needs. "This is one team, one dream," she says. "I'm only going to be as successful as my Financial Advisors are, and because I'm their intermediary within the firm, they are only going to be as successful as I am."
So when a Financial Advisor comes to her with something that requires an assist from corporate, they work together to make it happen. "We approach it with the understanding that we need to own this together," she says. "We craft the message together and then figure out how to get other people in the boat with us."
"It's an easier way to do business, and that's part of the cultural change that I'm trying to create here," she adds.
The results speak for themselves. The Beverly Hills branch is on track to post strong organic growth this year. "We changed the focus on how to help Financial Advisors be successful," she says. "Our Financial Advisors know that I'm advocating for them and will be shoulder to shoulder with them in terms of closing business and getting things done."
Looking ahead, she wants the rest of the Los Angeles marketplace place to know that the Beverly Hills office of Morgan Stanley is the best place for any Financial Advisor who wants to grow his or her business. She points to the strong support that she and her team have received from management and the deep resources available to help make Financial Advisors successful.
"I want to make sure my Financial Advisors know that when they bring in a prospect they can say, without a doubt, that this is the best firm in Beverly Hills," she says.