DIVERSITY & INCLUSION SOLUTIONS:
KEYNOTES / SPEECHES
Nobody Wants to Talk About It: Race, Identity and the Difficulties in Forging Meaningful Conversations: This approximately 40 minute talk uses the title of Michael’s recently released book which chronicles his travels across the country the past fifteen years telling his story and engaging people in difficult conversations about race & identity. Along the way – and throughout the book – Michael relates stories of the awkward and uncomfortable encounters he experienced and how those led him to seven tools he will lay out for participants. These tools, along with several additional simple methods, will give people a roadmap to more authentic and meaningful conversations in the workplace and beyond. The talk is usually followed by a Q&A during which attendees can pose questions regarding Michael’s unique story, as well as encompassing issues of race & identity. The total time required for this session is one hour (with an added Q&A), and can be delivered both in-person or virtually.
Cat People – Dog People: Mitigating Unconscious Bias Consciously: This 40 minute talk has sort of a humorous Ted-Talk/stand-up feel as Michael tells stories about his own life, his dogs, and a few anecdotes about cats (and other animals!). During the talk he explores – utilizing cats & dogs as a catalyst – how we all have biases and the ways in which we can become more aware of them. He challenges participants to look deeply at the ways in which we judge, giving them permission to laugh at the ridiculousness of our fast-held beliefs. Along the way he shares personal stories that help illuminate how we all trip, fall and get up again as we attempt to navigate a more inclusive environment. The session is best in-person, but can be accommodated for virtual viewing as well.
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