Meeting 2: Steps Forward

Woman holds up Speak Up sign to protest racial injustice.

We started to find our groove during our second meeting, with each working group coming to the table to present ideas from their respective brainstorms.

In fact, this was the meeting where this website was born.

Here’s an excerpt from our notes that day when the community leadership group laid out its initial vision for an info site

  • Potentially a website (candid and conversational) highlighting the process of our team and what the company is doing to fight racism within our company and within our industry.
  • The website would include our successes and our failures.
  • It would keep us accountable.
  • This could be beneficial for outside of the company, but also internally so that everyone within the company knows what we are doing.
  • It could be a great spot to hold resources, etc.
  • The website would help us be community leaders without patting ourselves on the back.

And three months later… voila!

Later in the meeting our anti-racist education group presented the idea of bringing to LGA a certified diversity and inclusion expert to help us explore how to best reach our goals and to help us create agency principles to guide LGA’s future diversity and equity work.

We also discussed the importance of voting in ensuring implementation of equitable and just policies. This led to a discussion about the possibility of giving the agency election day as a holiday so LGAers could participate fully in their democracy. In addition, the team also agreed to hold the agency accountable for voting, by sending out monthly reminders about upcoming registration deadlines, information on absentee ballots and more.

The diverse workforce working group asked the task force to consider steps LGA should take to attract more diverse clients and talent. We discussed where LGA is currently falling short and brainstormed wholly new ideas for attracting talent that will challenge our own biases, bring a new perspective to the table and enhance our work.

We also had a frank discussion about LGA’s annual Goodstock, a 24-hour workday where we complete pro bono work for nonprofits in the community. We raised questions like: Should our next event focus in particular on black-owned businesses? Should Goodstock be an event open only to POC businesses? How can we make social justice a centerpiece of this event moving forward?

About halfway through our workforce discussion, a comment was made about whether we need to bring into our discussions a member of LGA’s HR team to ensure our ideas are compliant with all workplace laws.

This pause was a reflective moment for all of us. As a task force – and group of relatively likeminded people who care deeply about the subject at hand – we had brainstormed tons of ideas without even considering HR ramifications. Our own “bubble” – some could say “echo chamber” – had provided so much reverberating excitement that we’d forgotten a vital step – the possible legal consequences of totally upending policies and procedures that have been in place at LGA for years.

This pause was a good reminder that all of this only works if we do things the right way – which is not always the quickest way. The journey continues. On to week three…