HR Labs, DEIB Edition: Torin Ellis Talks Beating Unconscious Bias
February 2, 2021
We’re thrilled to announce the third season of HR Labs, a podcast that explores how to create a better employee experience for all of your people. This season is hosted by Cornerstone’s Chief Learning Officer and VP of Organizational Effectiveness Jeff Miller and Chief Diversity Officer Duane La Bom. Through conversations with change-makers, activists, executives and experts, they’ll explore strategies for taking diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB) initiatives from intention to action. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you listen.
Unconscious bias in the workplace can be a fraught topic. While there’s research to suggest that some 95% of the population holds unconscious or implicit biases, some experts doubt the validity of this research. And despite more companies adopting unconscious bias training to help boost diversity and inclusion in the workplace, these efforts by themselves often fall short.
The way forward, said Torin Ellis on the latest episode of HR Labs, is "to come at this [DEI] conversation differently."
Meet DEI Expert, Torin Ellis
Torin is a diversity strategist, author, and co-host of the Crazy and the King podcast. He works with companies to advance their diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging initiatives, whether that’s by optimizing the talent acquisition process or engaging leadership teams.
Through this work, he’s seen that companies often use unconscious bias training to show their commitment to DEI initiatives—but they don’t do the necessary work that lies beyond that initial training. Training, while important, shouldn’t take the place of real action—like having difficult conversations or actually holding employees and leadership accountable for their contributions to DEIB.
Beyond Unconscious Bias Training
In this episode, Jeff and Torin discuss what unconscious bias is as well some of the short- and long-term steps leaders can take to identify and mitigate bias in their organization at every value point— from recruiting and other talent strategies to employer brand, supply chain, and more.
Check out the latest episode to learn more about what Torin says organizations and people can do to lift the "curtain of complacency and mediocrity" when it comes to diversity and inclusion in the workplace, and how he sees our greater humanity as the true ROI of DEI.
And if you like the conversation, subscribe to HR Labs to never miss a future episode. HR Labs episodes are released biweekly: Check back with us on February 17 to hear Dr. Ella Washington and Duane La Bom discuss microaggressions.
At the ~11:53 min mark of the episode, Torin states that the Democratic Party hasn’t had a Black woman lead a committee in 40-something years. After the interview, Torin shared with us that he misquoted from an interview Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence conducted on #RolandMartinUnfiltered. In the interview, Congresswoman Lawrence states there hasn’t been a Black female in a Democratic Caucus leadership position in over 40 years. You can view that interview here: https://www.house.gov/leadership