DEI Trainer’s Limited Service Warranty

Five people — Standing white women not smiling, white man w/glasses grinning, seated Black man with hat, Asian women, Black man. Picture found w/ search term “group of unicorns.”
Photo by Anthony Shkraba on Pexels.com

Editor’s note: We welcome a guest post from Carrie Basas about Diversity Equity and Inclusion training. Carrie wrote this while I was on vacation so I could extend my vacation. Send us your completed MadLibs like entries — fakequity@gmail.com.


DEI Trainer (hereinafter “DT”) agrees to perform a complete human ______ (noun implying to fix or destroy completely) service for Client on the express condition that DT’s sole obligation is that the _____ (noun for group of humans) ______ (verb not containing “-spain”) and participate in discussions about _____ (noun for unpleasant topic to some). Client acknowledges that DT’s work will be performed in a professional and courteous manner unless the _________ (noun for activity happening under a big top) is in town and happens to be Client’s ________ (noun for group of people paid for their skills). DT cannot and does not warrant the fitness, suitability, or longevity of its trainings because people are sometimes _________ (adjective that might remind you of slurping) and __________ (title of Ijeoma Oluo’s book that begins with “M”). If Client does not see lasting results from the 90-minute training that they insisted would fix everything everywhere and could not impede more _______ (adjective related to grandiosity) work, DT can remind Client that DT does not sell ________ (plural noun for magical devices) and that Customer could always ________ (verb related to employment) better. Similarly, a cheaper option for training would be ________ (social media platform), _________ (search engine), or ___________ (name of your most boring neighbor).

If there is a specific problem with the quality of the services performed or the effectiveness of the ___________ (noun related to surrealism, hobbits, or spa services), Client shall inform DT in writing and, if feasible, the service will be re-performed through exorcism at no additional charge. In the event that such services are needed, Client shall provide adequate ________ (plural noun for items imbibed) to DT and no co-pay for _________ (DT’s favorite migraine medication). Any additional costs related to the aforementioned supplies are the sole responsibility of Client. DT shall not be liable for any injuries that could result from rendering the stink _______ (body part) or muttering ____________ (adverb expressing frustration) at a rate of ________ (high number) WPM.

If DT cannot offer a solution to Client’s concerns by repeating the exorcism, then Client and DT shall negotiate in good faith to reach an equitable resolution. If the parties cannot resolve the dispute informally, they will seek the assistance of _______________ (favorite game-show host) and split the _____________ (whatever is behind Door 1 or in the jackpot). If said host is not available, the parties will be bound by the laws of ___________ (imaginary land or small city) as they were written in __________ (your birth year). If all else fails, the parties will start a book club and TED Talk videos. 

*Carrie would like to note, in order to keep her Bar membership, that this document does not constitute legal advice and should not be attached to any contracts where you expect to be paid.


Carrie Basas works in education advocacy and formerly in civil rights law, specializing in disabilities rights. She was a law professor impressing upon law students the importance of understanding race and its impact on people. Carrie has a MEd in Education Policy, Organizations and Leadership from the University of Washington. She earned a Juris Doctorate from Harvard Law School and an Honors B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Sociology/Anthropology from Swarthmore College. However, her biggest claim to fame is some of her fashion weekend wear while hanging with her family, tiny dog, and two rabbits.


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, AE, Agent001, Aimie, AlaynaAlessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlee, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Cari, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jason, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Maki, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Melody, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

I am writing from the ancestral lands of the 29 federally recognized and non-federally recognized tribes in now Washington State, including the Coast Salish people — Duwamish, Muckleshoot, Suquamish, Snoqualmie, and Native American organizations that have treaty rights and have been here since time immemorial. I give my thanks to the elders, Native and Indigenous colleagues and relations, and the land itself. Fakequity pays “rent” to Native organizations in Washington and Hawaii; a small action to hopefully repair and work to be in more justice based relations.

Letter to my kids at the end of this pandemic school year

Fakequity readers… It is 11.45 p.m. and this is the third attempt to write a blog post… I’m going to try again, nothing like a deadline to force creativity and just words on a blank screen. Apologies for the ultra-personal nature.

Note – I have two kids, but the word you is sometimes used to reflect one child in my writing below, this may feel disjointed in the reading.

Dear Kids (I’m not sharing your names here cause you deserve anonymity),

It is the end of the school year. I know both of you are super excited not to have online school, but simultaneously bummed and worried about what devices you’ll use to get your screen fix since we have to return your school laptops.

The school year was definitely different. You didn’t go to a school building. School was in our living room and at the kitchen table. Each of us with our defined seating and cords jumbled all over the place. I got to hear you laugh at jokes, yell out answers to questions, and have one sided conversations since you had headphones on, and vice versa. You heard my work conversations talking about topics you now have fluency in at a young age. You understand words like race, racism, Black Lives Matter, equity, white, and other terminology many adults are still afraid to say out loud. I know, and I think you know, you have a long way to go to learn more about these terms. I have to learn with you too.

I’m so happy your teachers engaged in these conversations with you and took it upon themselves to bring them up. After the January riot and insurrection at the US Capitol, I got to watch your teachers skillfully engage you in conversation. You knew a lot more than I thought, which made me proud and sad – sad knowing you see truths about our country I didn’t have to realize until I was an adult.

I know you’re still hurt, sad, upset about things COVID took away. School camp, the chance to learn an instrument live — online band classes really don’t work well, playing with friends. I’m trying to remember these are huge for you.

Being home together had perks. We got to watch the inauguration and you were with us as we watched the first women and Asian and Black vice president sworn into office. You also got to be a part of my fundraiser side hustle, where we had mugs made with the Sen. Kamala Harris’ phrases “I’m Speaking.” and “I will not be lectured.” The money went to Womxn of Color in Education, supporting women of color who are running for school boards in Washington. I know both of you take secret pride in using that mug, and you love we put the phrase “I’m Speaking.” on the mug since you suggested it.

This school year you both learned how to build community in ways that are new even for adults. When I watched you figure out how to have online playdates, screen share, and manipulate technology with ease it was impressive. Although you still have some basics to learn, like how to unplug your computer and move it off the dining table, k? Your generation will understand and hopefully be more thoughtful and inclusive when it comes to accessibility of people with disabilities, non-dominate language speakers, childcare, and other barriers that come up.

I was impressed with the creativity that came about because of COVID. You got to trick-o-treat in new ways that built community, a fall highlight. Winter brought other fun, like a lot of snow and watching movies on Netflix and Disney+. We talked a lot about how old movies are funny, but also questionable by modern standards. I enjoyed watching Star Trek, Avengers, and other series and movies with you snuggled under blankets — there were cultural lessons in these even if not explicit. We got creative with finding new things to do, including loving on the pandemic dog. You both learned how to cook a little more and we explored making things from our cultural heritage – andagi – Okinawan donuts, Spam musubi, okonomiyaki, ramen, and so on. Just tonight a Latinx neighbor brought us Taiwanese cakes to celebrate her new job.

I also want you to remember through COVID we were lucky and fortunate; we can’t take this for granted. While life was harder, you never were without. It is now our civic and moral duty to share this forward. That is why I ask (you may say order) you to do things that sometimes you would rather not because they aren’t as fun as your normal routines.

You’ll start venturing out again soon, without us – that is a good thing. You need to learn how to be with others, especially your Black and Brown relations. You need to learn the world is not as sheltered as our dining room table and little boxes on a screen. As your grandma said a parent’s job is to raise kids to be independent. As you go back out in the world, you’re going to experience racism, hurt, and even cause some hurt to others, but I hope the year together gave you a more solid foundation to grow from.

I hope you grew more confident and humble over the past year. I hope you understand your Asian identities more, including in relation to other Black and Brown people. I hope you learned how to be more compassionate and thoughtful. Now you can go out and test these learnings as you move back into a 3-dimensitonal world. You can come home when you need a safe refuge, although not forever cause your job is to be independent but rooted as well. Your Oba’s (grandma) other life lesson to me, which I now pass to you – never bring home dirty laundry. I always thought she meant that literally since we lived in an apartment building with coin operated laundry machines, but I now think she meant that metaphorically as well. Go and make a mess if you must, but you clean it up.  

In some ways I hope you never read this. You don’t need a parent who blogs about you. You need to be self-centered kids. If you do read it, just know it was midnight musings about our pandemic year together.

Love,
Mama


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, AE, Agent001, Aimie, Alayna, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlee, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Cari, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jason, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Maki, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Melody, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

I am writing from the ancestral lands of the 29 federally recognized and non-federally recognized tribes in now Washington State, including the Coast Salish people — Duwamish, Muckleshoot, Suquamish, Snoqualmie, and Native American organizations that have treaty rights and have been here since time immemorial. I give my thanks to the elders, Native and Indigenous colleagues and relations, and the land itself. Fakequity pays “rent” to Native organizations in Washington and Hawaii; a small action to hopefully repair and work to be in more justice based relations.

Paper vs Online – Thinking About the Future, Will it Be Inclusive of POCs?

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Like many others much of my life has shifted to online interactions because of COVID. My work life has shifted to online work, which I am fortunate to be able to do. Today I logged several hours of meetings from my dining room table with two kids doing remote learning and sneaking YouTube videos when they thought the adults weren’t watching.

In one of my online meetings, a data learning cohort my organization is piloting, the facilitator asked about data storage. I briefly mentioned how pre-pandemic our data storage, namely surveys we had conducted pre-pandemic were mostly paper based which took us down a tangent of paper vs online data collection. We had offered both paper surveys and online surveys, but majority of the surveys returned were via paper. When we took this data back to the design team who helped collect surveys they said their respondents (majority POC families, immigrants, not English fluent) preferred the paper surveys for a lot of reasons – limited access to the internet, facilitators could walk through the survey more easily with families via paper, the paper surveys could be dropped off at people’s houses, and many other reasons.

I wonder as we return to pre-COVID life will the online ways of working continue, and if so, will it be inclusive of POCs who utilize old-school technology like paper?

Limits of Online Engagement

The technology divide was deeply exposed when COVID forced schools and businesses to shift to remote access, libraries and coffee shops to close where many people accessed cheap or free internet service, and many others who may have been able to afford online access were suddenly out of work. As communications shifted online, many people of color were left behind.

As we move forward with re-opening plans, I hope we design our post-COVID lives to include our families and neighbors who previously used paper and needed support to participate in civic life. If we value our communities of color, immigrants, limited English speaking neighbors, seniors, perhaps living without reliable electricity, and those without computers or internet access we’ll design ways of engaging that don’t rely upon internet-based technology.

As an example, many COVID testing, and vaccine clinics required people to schedule appointments online. Many of us with internet access expected this and knew how to navigate the online systems. Vaccine hunters knew how to access the online portal showing where vaccines were available and could scoop up appointments. Many organizations did impressive outreach – making calls, texting people to make sure they got signed up, door knocking to make sure their clients secured appointments for a COVID vaccine. But what if we didn’t have organizations who saw it as their mission to bridge that divide? The shift to online platforms has left people behind – we need to design the shift to online better, smarter, and more intentionally.

We also have to think about who has decision making control and power/agency as we shift to online platforms. With the shift to online platforms and new ways of working people of color are often not in control and do not have a great deal of say in how platforms are created.

Why Paper

While many of us have embraced online life, there are still pros to paper in some circumstances. Every few months I will hear someone say something along the lines “even XXX [fill in poor, immigrant, non/limited English, seniors, etc.] have smart phone,” therefore we don’t have to print paper copies. The answer is yes and no. While many may have a smart phone, not everyone keeps data plans or can connect their smart phones to the internet which we saw during the early days of the pandemic when libraries and coffeeshops (traditional places where people could access Wi-Fi) closed.

I’ve also seen where paper is superior because it allows people to have a written record which they can share with others, especially if they need help understanding what is on the paper. Seniors and people with limited English proficiency may use paper copies to ask for help understanding what is said.

Paper is also simpler. Having spent the past year helping my kids navigate online platforms, I can’t tell you how many times we’ve lost logins and passwords. My kids are now very digital savvy, but there was a learning curve and they still periodically need help. (Side note paper is not always superior when your kid loses the one piece of paper he wrote the Zoom meeting code on, tech came to the rescue since I had the code saved in a previous text thread). For people who are not digital natives navigating complex online registration, logins, and passwords is much more challenging then filling out a paper based registration form.  

Oldest Technology – People

As we move forward in a digital world, we need to remember that “old” technologies are still embraced. The oldest form of technology – human relationships is the most important and needs to be at the center of everything we do regardless of the platforms of online versus paper.

As I was writing this I thought about my work and how I most likely will continue with many of the online shifts my organization has made. In some ways I can’t see us going back to some of the older practices we were forced to let go of because of COVID. Like do I really need to print everything or commute to places for meetings? Meeting virtually has allowed us to engage in new ways and in many cases with new and more people. But thinking this through, I shouldn’t lose reaching out to people who aren’t online or easily reached through the ‘new’ ways of working. That work is on us and we can own that responsibility.


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, AE, Agent001, Aimie, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlee, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Cari, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jason, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Maki, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

I am writing from the ancestral lands of the 29 federally recognized and non-federally recognized tribes in now Washington State, including the Coast Salish people — Duwamish, Muckleshoot, Suquamish, Snoqualmie, and Native American organizations that have treaty rights and have been here since time immemorial. I give my thanks to the elders, Native and Indigenous colleagues and relations, and the land itself. Fakequity pays “rent” to Native organizations in Washington and Hawaii; a small action to hopefully repair and work to be in more justice based relations.

How to Facilitate Better Ice Breaker Questions

Photo by Nacho Canepa from Pexels Picture of an ship surrounded by ice and a penguin

I’m an introvert and I dislike ice breakers. Whenever I attend a meeting and the facilitator says “Let’s do an ice breaker” or “here is a warm up question,” I have to fight the urge to suddenly slink back or walk to the snack table.

Yet as a facilitator I often throw these questions into meetings or trainings I run because I know they work. I’ve also learned through trial and error and watching very skilled people run meetings there are better ways of asking ice breaker or warm-up questions.

Why have an opening question

Having an opening question for everyone to talk about is a good way to get everyone to participate. It sets the tone for the meeting/gathering and invites active participation from everyone, not just those who traditionally talk. My friend who is a high school teacher once told me students are often lectured to will tune out pretty quickly, the same happens with adults, so inviting people to participate right away helps to keep them engaged.

As a facilitator I try to build in ways for people to meet and connect with someone new at the meeting. When we met in-person (pre-COVID) I allowed people to choose their partner, although I instruct people to meet someone new (no sticking to people they already know). In Zoom life, I often use the breakout room function and allow Zoom to randomly assign people. I warn people they will be randomly assigned, but not to fear the conversation will be brief, about 3-mins. It is just enough time to meet someone else and think about the prompt, but not long enough that people will get squirrely if they don’t like each other.

I’ve learned from educators you should have a clear learning target or purpose. The purpose of an opening question is a) to engage all participants, b) level the power dynamics and demonstrate everyone can and should participate in ways that are comfortable, and c) break up cliques and encourage people to get to know others. All these have underlying racialized power dynamics in different ways. A good opening can help to shift some of the power dynamics and disrupt the societal norms that happen in groups (e.g. who speaks first, people congregating with people they know, etc).

Prompts and Opening Questions

I’ve been working on writing better prompts and questions so we don’t default to the same ones like “What do you plan to do this weekend?” or “What celebrity do most people say you look like?” These are ok questions, but they allow for superficial answers. I now believe a better opening question can help to frame the rest of the meeting and invite people to connect more deeply with the purpose and content.

A colleague told me she was at a meeting where the opening question was about weekend plans and most of the people there mentioned going skiing or taking a trip of some sort. Another person in the meeting mentioned the amount of privilege in the group they hadn’t even noticed until that moment. At another training I ran I used an opening prompt that touched upon relationships and justice. A participant noted she liked that question better than standard opening questions because it was a question everyone in their group could wrestle with and personalize. That story made me think about opening questions differently. A reflective opening question can do more than share out superficially.

A few weeks ago I was facilitating a meeting during the start of the trial in George Floyd’s murder. The group was primarily Asians who work in human services, government, and social justice organizations. The question I posed was something along the lines of “What does it mean to us as an Asian community to work towards justice with the Black community? What are the solidarities and relationships we need to build and nurture?” While the meeting wasn’t focused on building solidarities across communities I wanted to acknowledge the importance of the day and not to let the moment go by. I think it also invited people to reflect more deeply about our place in the POC community and to reflect more deeply.

Not a Single Identity

The stories we share are important to building relationships which is at the heart of racial equity work. A good warm up question invites people to share a piece of their core beliefs. The questions can move us beyond seeing people through a single identity, and with online meetings as a box on a screen. Coming up with a good question is like finding a good seed and facilitating the seed’s growth – giving it context, space – time, to grow a relationship between people.

I’ve tried to shift away from questions about what people are doing, to questions about howpeople are feeling and acting. Questions about what people do, such as “what are you doing this weekend?” or “where was the last place you visited?” don’t invite people to reflect. The answers can also expose class divides (as mentioned earlier) which can go against the overall value of creating relationships.

Some tips to writing better warm up questions:

  • Think about some of the values of your meeting and write a question pointing towards those values.
  • Link it to something happening in the community context. If there is something big happening in the news call that into the meeting – invite people to reflect on how it is impacting their lives.
  • Invite people to share a memory related to something you’re working on, it is a way of asking what motivates people to do the work.
  • Questions don’t always have to be downers or deep, questions about creativity and joy can spark new ways of thinking as a group.
  • Consider offering a buffet of questions. My friend Jondou often offers a series of three related questions to help people get started. Today I watched him facilitate and he said the questions were like a Taiwanese snack tray, you can take a little from each question, you won’t have enough time to get through all of them, but if you take what you need you’ll be full.
  • Remind people to talk about themselves and to share their own stories, not other people’s stories.
  • Be ok with people going way of script with the prompts. The idea is to get people thinking and getting to know someone else.
  • Slow down and give people time to reflect and share. If you have time in the large group invite a few people to share what they shared with their partner(s).

Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, AE, Agent001, Aimie, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlee, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Cari, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jason, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Maki, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

I am writing from the ancestral lands of the 29 federally recognized and non-federally recognized tribes in now Washington State, including the Duwamish, Muckleshoot, Suquamish, Snoqualmie, and Native American organizations that have treaty rights and have been here since time immemorial. I give my thanks to the elders, my Native and Indigenous colleagues and relations, and the land itself. Fakequity pays “rent” to Native organizations in Washington and Hawaii, which is a small act of working to be in more just relations.

Design for the Furthest from Opportunity

I talked to a friend and colleague who teaches middle school earlier this week. Liz is a first year teacher and had to adapt quickly and nimbly to teaching online, then going back into the classroom, and teaching students remotely and in-person at the same time. As we chatted, she told me more about her classes, and she mentioned her husband who is a woodworker. She said he loves his work because he designs for harmony and to solve problems. He can look at a space, especially oddly shaped spaces and mathematically and artfully design a built-in shelf, bookcase, or piece of furniture to accomplish the goal. I loved the phrase design for harmony.

Another colleague Trang did amazing volunteer advocacy work to improve COVID19 vaccine access for POC elders, immigrants, and community members who aren’t English proficient. During one of her briefing calls she said you can judge an event or project on how well it was designed for those who are the hardest to serve. (She said it much more eloquently.)

How we plan and design says a lot about our values.

As Trang alluded, how people experience an event or project speaks volumes about what the planners value. If we say we value racial equity, are we designing experiences that center people of color? As an example, with the rollout of COVID19 vaccines the distribution plan and execution of those plans had nods towards people of color, but didn’t always take into account the full-range of needs, barriers, and assets.

As an example, booking an appointment to get a COVID19 vaccine required the use of the internet and understanding English. Many of the appointments were snatched up quickly by people who were English literate and had access to the internet, leaving out many immigrants and seniors. Nonprofits, friends and family members sometimes often had to jump in to make calls and book vaccination appointments. Many did this willingly, but in an equitable system we wouldn’t have to rely upon goodwill of others the system would have been designed with seniors and immigrants in mind.

People with disabilities were also left out of the distribution plans. A friend with vision impairment wanted to access a vaccination in her own neighborhood but couldn’t, she had to find a ride to the mass vaccination site. When I mentioned this on a planning call with officials running the vaccination sites one of them said “the vaccination site is ADA accessible,” I had to remind them access only works if you can get there. Physical access isn’t the only part of disability justice, we need to think about the entire experience.

What we value is what we plan around. I’ve been guilty of planning events fast and valuing expediency and efficiency over centering those furthest from justice – when I did this it showed and I was rightfully called out. My friend Carrie also reminds me “when we design for everyone, we design for no one.” We need to be clear about who we value as we design events and projects. When we are clear about what and who we value in our design people can see themselves in it.

As you design consider the experiences of people of others not just people like yourself and your planning team (we often gather with people of similar backgrounds and experiences). I remember hearing a story about an elderly SE Asian immigrant who refused to use a mass vaccination site at a large cavernous stadium because it reminded her of her war experience and watching others being marched into a stadium knowing they wouldn’t come out. She needed a different vaccination site that was smaller and we should design spaces that make her others feel safe and included.

Design for Harmony

I’m still thinking what it means to design for harmony in racial equity work. Often, we’re designing to agitate, disrupt the status quo (which needs disruption), or to provoke a response – all of which are needed to achieve racial justice. Maybe we also need to periodically design for harmony. Liz described how her woodworker partner designs functional pieces that help them get along better. Maybe we need to design in this way too – I’ll be thinking about this concept especially as I design a few online events. If I come up with anything novel share it, but for now I just have a lot of questions about the concept.


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, AE, Agent001, Aimie, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlee, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Cari, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jason, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Maki, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

Equity vs Race – Be clear with language

I’m 90% sure I’ve blogged about this before, but it warrants an updated post – stop using the word equity as a proxy for the words race, racism, Black, Brown, people of color, etc.

If you do a quick online news search for the word ‘equity’ search results pop up quickly. Such as:

  • Equity Is Fundamental to Implementation Science (SSIR)
  • State starts to see vaccine equity success, announces new plan to expand distribution (Minnesota/KARE11)
  • Washington State’s Equity Relief Fund awards nearly $12 million to 358 nonprofits statewide (WA State Dept of Commerce)

In these and many other headlines and titles, the word equity should be swapped out for a more precise term. Let me re-write the headlines from above:

  • Understanding Race is Fundamental to Implementation Success
  • State starts to see vaccine social-vulnerability gap closing, success. Announces a new plan to expand distribution.
  • Washington State’s Communities of Color Relief Fund

With these more precise terms we can see how the intention of the headline changes. As an example a person from a financial background could have read the Department of Commerce grant headline and thought of financial equity and may have tried to apply for the grant for their for-profit, white-serving or color blind, organization or business.

Equity is sometimes used to code language and avoid talking about what we should be talking about. The word equity is subbed in as a subtle way to nod towards equity, without saying words such as race, racism, white privilege, whiteness, equality, etc. As an example, all of the statement on the left are statements I’ve pulled from news articles:

  • How important is equity to you? vs. How important is racism to you?
  • We must close the equity gap in housing. (Note this could mean financial equity gap.) vs. We must close the racial imbalance in homeownership gap.
  • “Using a random drawing system to keep gifting equitable,” vs. Using a random drawing system to keep gifting fair or without bias.

This sometimes happens in government documents where it isn’t politically feasible or politically advantageous to use precise language such as Black, African American, people of color, racism, etc.

Be Precise – Use the Words

It is important to say what we mean to say. If we are talking about Black people and Black communities we need to use the word Black and not hide behind terms such as people of color, minorities, equity. It is ok to use terms that precisely name what we need them to say.

Color blindness and not talking about race is how we got to where we are today. US Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts opined: “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race.” Chief Justice Roberts sided with the plurality which stopped the use of race as a tie breaker in student assignment plans. For reference look up Parents Involved with Community Schools v. Seattle School District 1. Had he wanted to be more clear with his language he could have said (but really not mean), “The way we stop discriminating on the basis of race against people of color, is to stop white privilege.”

When we are clear or clearer with our words and language we allow people of color to be seen and understood. Unclear language and hiding behind words such as equity, equal, sometimes even terms like People of Color when we really mean Black and African Americans are tools of racism. To undo racism we have to confront it and with every tool possible, including precise and clear language.


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, AE, Agent001, Aimie, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlee, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Cari, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jason, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Maki, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

Give Up Your Addiction to Quick Changes

Artwork from Amplifer Art — Noa Denmon, Security is Freedom
Yellow background with multi-racial and diverse people sharing a meal

Note: It is Asian Pacific Islander heritage month. Uncle Frankie (everyone’s uncle) shared the Asian Pacific Virtual Showcase with a diverse array of videos from API artist. The videos are free until the end of the month.


COVID19 has changed my relationship with time. In the early days of the pandemic, my schedule flipped overnight. One of the first changes I made was turning off the alarm clock – I haven’t used it since. Within hours and days we also had to figure out how to take care of each other. Quickly people raised money to keep restaurant workers working and people fed. Schools had to rework their entire system to get food to kids, and childcare running. Frontline workers had to navigate unseen dangers and figure out how to keep their families and roommates safe. Looking back we did this all quickly and it felt good.

Now it is time to give up some of our addiction to these quick hits of success. They were important. We had to do them, we had to take care of people and I’m glad we did. Now we need to start thinking about the long term, the long slog of recovery and make longer-term investments.

We Give Up Quickly

I was talking to a friend who runs a program that supports students with micro-grants to help with immediate health and safety needs. She purposefully makes it low-barrier for people trying to access the funds. Because of this she doesn’t track a lot of demographic data. My friend is now worried funders will start pulling out because they want quicker results in proving the micro-grants are making a difference. They want her to prove paying a rent check is keeping a student in school and learning. While this may sound reasonable, it is more complicated than it sounds.

We’re in a society of quick fixes – email is quick, text is even quicker – present a problem and expect a solution. Yet human problems are often quick-and-slow in the making (quick like during the pandemic, but slow if you think about a person’s overall life and lack of stability) and slower to resolve. As my friend and I talked through her data problem I mentioned when I was on a nonprofit board, Neighborhood House, they often said it would take a minimum of three years, more like five years, to get a family stabilized. My friend nodded and said she thought the timeline was more like ten years. Understanding these real life timelines, we need to give up thinking that quick solutions can achieve outsized results.

We also need to stop thinking we can fix systemic problems quickly. Yes paying a person’s rent is super important and will help keep them housed and maybe give them the grace and space they need to get back on their feet. But we shouldn’t expect a one-time fix to lead to better grades, a college degree, food and housing stability, etc.

We like to give up quickly and pivot strategies all the time. I constantly joke/lament that several of the foundations I work with are constantly in “refresh,” “re-strategizing,” “strategic planning,” or “change-cycle.” The only constant is their constant changing in search for the magical strategy that will get them the biggest return on their philanthropic investment. It is a privilege to constantly be searching for the next thing versus slogging away and seeing small gains as important.

I remember once (many years ago) applying for a job at a foundation and on the job description it clearly stated “know when to cut bait, and move on.” It is important to figure out when we’re investing in the wrong strategies, but also balance that thinking with has the investment not been given time to prove itself? Incremental gains overtime can lead to huge shifts over a generation.

COVID recovery will mean thinking about what we learned from COVID and keeping those lessons going for the future. The focus needs to shift from responding to recovering for the next 10-20 years and beyond. I remember hearing on the radio a commentator saying if we only have pandemics every 100 years we forget how to respond since the generation who experienced it is no longer around. What if we give equal attention to remembering and recovering?

Addiction to Quickness

One the policy side, I was talking to my friend Liv. She works with elected officials and is very good humored about. Like all of us they are addicted to the quick fixes. Someone emails with a problem and they rush to fix it. They claim they are doing “good work” because they solved a problem, they were responsive – they were even responsive to people and communities of color who are saying “we can’t and shouldn’t be forced to wait any longer!” While true, Liv sighed, the truth that when the elected respond to the quick fixes they often loose sight of the longer term changes needed and constantly want to change strategies. Saying yes to fixing one quick problem takes away energy and sometimes closes pathways needed for longer term change.

Liv told me how a consultant working with them told them they need to give up hit of responding to a Tweet or email solving a problem. They pushed back saying part of their job is to be responsive. The consultant reminded them they need to be responsive to solving problems, not the one constituent who knows how to email them.

We also need to realize while some of the problems we are keenly feeling appear quick to show up, they really aren’t new or quick to pop up. Police abuse of Black people has been with us since the founding of America, it is just now with video more common place more people can witness it. Inadequate healthcare and lack of information (internet) are now exposed by COVID, but these too have been slow burning problems. We need to create urgency around these problems and stick with solutions for the long haul.

Give Up the Quick Hit and Be Satisfied with a Slower Pace

The quick hit of solving problems wears off, so we need to train ourselves to see the rewards of slower paced incremental changes as well. These smaller changes build up if we let them.

I will caveat all of this by saying it can be argued there are times where small incremental changes are not the right approach. All of this work is nuanced and context matters.


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, Agent001, Aimie, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Cari, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Maki, Maki L., Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

Fakequity in Hiring Processes

Photo by Linda Eller-Shein on Pexels.com

I’ve been consumed with a few different hiring processes over the past few months. They have been a pain in the ass and fascinating at the same time. A pain since they require care and attention. If you try to shortcut any part of the process and you can see the repercussions fairly quickly. Fascinating for the same reason, very rarely do we run processes where the timelines are short enough to see outcomes so quickly.

What I’ve Learned

When it comes to hiring getting the process right is crucial to getting the outcomes you desire, assuming you’re using the standard US based hiring processes (e.g., put together a job description, launch it into cyberspaces for hopefully viral or just short of viral sharing, applications get emailed in, etc.). The process is fairly rote and as far as I can tell has not been adjusted much for decades, except with the internet now we don’t use newspaper classifieds anymore.

In the non-profit and government sectors it is also connected to personal networks in the sense we often rely upon people we know to help share the job postings and refer candidates or encourage people to apply.

Job Descriptions

Job descriptions are a staple of a hiring process. The description is a chance for the organization to get clear about what they are looking for, what the job details, the process for applying, etc. Like a dating profile it says “this is who I’m looking for,” and sometimes a little about who the organization is.

When focused on equity and inclusion, this document says a lot about the organization. Our friend Vu who blogs at NonprofitAF, has been on a campaign to have all job descriptions disclose a salary range. Salary ranges are important for transparency and benefit people of color when they negotiate a salary. There is very little defendable reasoning for not listing a salary range.

Carrie, a frequent guest blogger on Fakequity, has schooled me on the ways ableism shows up in job descriptions. Samples of ableist phrases that show up in job descriptions include:

  • must be able to lift XX pounds
  • must be able to sit and stand for long periods of time
  • valid drivers license required
  • view a computer for long periods of time
  • ability to type on a keyboard for long periods of time, and so on
  • must be able to speak and read English (I’ll give a hint, ASL is not English and people with learning disabilities can still participate in the workforce even if they can’t ‘read’)
  • dogs/cats are in the office (for organizations that are not animal serving)

For many of these requirements, there are reasonable accommodations. Such as while it is nice to be able to lift and move things around the office, is that really a core function of the person’s job? When I mentioned this to someone they pushed back and said “well the person needs to carry the lunches to the board meeting,” I rolled my eyes. Can’t the caterer move the lunches? Are you hiring someone to move lunches or are you hiring an administrative assistant to organize a board meeting? Providing lunches is part of the job, but there are many ways to accomplish that part of the job.

Requiring a drivers license is another ableist and classist requirement. Many people can’t drive, but that doesn’t preclude them from navigating physical environments. There are also people who can’t afford the cost of a driver’s license. Unless the job they are being hired for is a driver, such as a bus or van driver, the job can probably be accomplished without them needing to drive as a core function.

If you aren’t listing salary ranges and/or are including physical and other requirements that are unnecessary start eliminating those requirements. This is low hanging fruits for ways to be more inclusive. As a human resources person once told me, your job description should be as bias free as possible. That isn’t the time to impress your organizational culture on the person, you want people to apply not rule themselves out.  

Hiring Processes

I’ve participated in several public (government) hiring process recently. These processes was steeped in protocol. I appreciated some of the guardrails on the process, since this was for a position where everyone wanted a piece of the decision making and it could have stretched on forever. That said the process was not set up for families of color to have a strong say in the selection, and it felt like we were making artificial choices out of scarcity (if we only have one seat to fill who gets it, vs. let’s build a process around what is best for families of color representation). While pocs were appointed to the hiring team, the power and control of the process rested with the formal organization.

To the organizers credit they did push the boundaries of the process to allow for more input where possible. A listening session was cobbled together by community members and the official hiring team was invited and they all joined. The listening session was quite wonderful, although not super well attended because we didn’t have a lot of time to do a lot of outreach to get people on the Zoom line. We had a companion written survey with the same questions we asked during the Zoom call. It was heartening to see people used the translated surveys and replied in their home languages which proved they were paying attention, wanted a say, and the process itself didn’t allow for greater engagement.

Hiring processes, especially ones where the leadership position interfaces with the public, need to be structured in ways that allow for community input. Timelines should be stretched out so people can participate in various modes of inputs.

The last piece I learned from this process, is the engagement shouldn’t stop when the hiring team makes their selection. Onboarding and continued engagement are important pieces to setting the new person and the community up or success. This part of the process should center communities of color too. Perhaps in another post we can dig into this topic, but for now just remember to pay attention to it.

Interviews

I’m not going to write a lot about interviews, we’ll save that for another post. I do want to share it is Ramadan right now and many Muslims are fasting (no food or water/liquids) from sunup until sundown. My colleague reminded me for people who are fasting it can be very challenging to interview. Perhaps a reasonable accommodation would be to offer an interview after they have broken their fast for the day, at the very least keep this in mind as you interview people.


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, Agent001, Aimie, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Cari, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Maki, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

Intent vs. Impact vs. Consequences

Mural painted pink background, white swirls, orange speech bubble with words in light blue “Have Difficult Dialogues.” Seen in Seattle’s Chinatown/International District

For a long time people would, and probably still do, write a group norm that says something along the lines of “consider the intent of a person’s words,” “give grace and assume best intent,” or “assume positive intent.” Even Oprah uses the word intention when she speaks and writes. I once heard her say she tries to work and live with intention, including asking her staff members who approach her with project request or ideas “What is your intention?” If they can’t answer genuinely their idea doesn’t go far with her. Intentions are incredibly important but often a careless intention is hurtful to POCs and people hide behind their intentions without understanding the impact and accepting the consequences.

A Sign in the Bathroom

A few weeks ago I virtually “ran into” a friend I hadn’t talked to in a long while. We were catching up with each other and she told me about a hurtful incident. Her friend was in the bathroom of a hospital and came across a poster from public health telling people to be on the lookout for coronavirus symptoms (i.e., cough, fever, etc.). It also said if they were in contact with people who traveled to China, the original epicenter of COVID19, to be extra cautious. She came across this poster during a week where intense anti-Asian hate was in the media and closer to home people in our immediate circle had experienced anti-Asian racism.

My friend was deeply hurt, offended, and mad. She took the time to email contacts at public health with a picture of the signage to inquire about it. The staff person at public health replied and said it looked like the sign had been produced during the early days of COVID19, when many officials were linking COVID directly to people who traveled to China. Looking back that may all be factual, but it ignored the impact of how it bred anti-Asian hate and violence, especially since by the time COVID reached Seattle region (where the first US case was detected) it was already spreading beyond people connected to China.

The reply saying the signage was produced almost a year ago and would ask the hospital to remove it was not the response she was hoping for. It dismissed the hurtful impact of the signage, and did not acknowledge how they unintentionally contributed to anti-Asian sentiments. The not accepting of responsibility or the consequences of the inherent racism that is more visible a year later was not acceptable to my friend.

When she relayed the story to me and I saw the picture, my first reaction was “that sign is definitely old.” Like the staff person, I dismissed it at first. In talking it through I saw how the impact was deeper and the lack of accepting responsibility didn’t lead to responsibility. As Matt Halverson points out in a related piece, when this signage was produced COVID19 was well established in Italy but few public health organizations called attention to travel to Italy. Too often we brush things aside and say, “that wasn’t the intention” and we plow forward. Maybe we need to do what my friend was hoping for – accepting of responsibility for the hurt and facing up to the consequences it may have caused. I’ve also been thinking about the recovery period from COVID and the lessons we carry forward. The dismissing of the signage as old, didn’t point to what we need to learn to avoid these incidents in the next pandemic (which there will be at some point).

Impact and Consequences

I feel at times people say, “that wasn’t my intention,” and expect to be let off. They may feel bad, but it stops there. We need to beyond acknowledging intent and work towards acknowledging the impact and the consequences of actions to get closer to justice. In these situations, it is important to acknowledge the harm done and not brush it off. Acknowledgment is one piece of working to rebuild trust and rebuild the relationship that has been damaged. The people involved will also have to get into their feelings and most likely dwell in the zone of uncomfortable and unsettled feelings. Feelings are part of growth so be ok with being uncomfortable and honor that intention of growth for racial equity.


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, Agent001, Aimie, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Carmen, Carol Ann, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelley, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Meghan, Melissa, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah O., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.

We Should Still be Protesting

Women holding cardboard sign with white lettering “I CANT BREATHE” city background. Photo by Life Matters on Pexels.com

Earlier this week many of us were riveted to screens as we waited for the verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial. Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was on trial for murdering George Floyd, a Black man. Chauvin was one of four officers who tried to arrest Floyd. While Floyd was handcuffed with his hands behind his back, face down, Chauvin kept his knee of the back of Floyd’s neck for 8 min and 46 seconds.

Before the verdict came out I chatted with POC friends and many were ready for an acquittal. We felt like history proved white cops get off with harming and killing Black people and not being held accountable. An acquittal would justify the anger, the feeling of continued harm, the lack of being seen as worthy of protection by the state and community. A Black friend said while he wanted a guilty verdict for the family – justice and accountability, and he wanted an acquittal to release the pent up anger and unleash public protest that could force broader actions. What we didn’t have time to talk about was how harmful an acquittal would have been since it would have sent a signal that the police are right and can continue to operate as is, but I’m confident we were all thinking this as well.

The guilty verdict may be the ‘justice’ verdict in this case, but we as non-Black people, should still be mad and protesting. The guilty verdict has brought justice for the Floyd family but as many others have pointed out it is an empty feeling. A Black man – a grandfather – is still dead. In the same week other Black people were killed by police officers.

“One Bad Apple…” that metaphor doesn’t work

Last summer many allies joined in protest and called for changes. It was important and signaled to many policymakers, leaders, and the community at large that we are ready and demanding changes and accountability. I remember watching an over 2-hour silent march go by my house, it was a cold spring day with rain and yet thousands of people quietly walked to silently protest over police brutality and to affirm our belief in our Black relations. I hope those thousands of people who walked by my house are still working protesting the continued police brutality.

Just because one officer was found guilty does not make up for the millions of other acts that continue to harm Black and Brown people. The “one bad apple, spoils a whole batch” metaphor doesn’t work – we need to look at the whole system and create conditions that force system wide changes, not incremental changes that tinker here and there. As my friend RB said one guilty verdict doesn’t wipe out generations of Black trauma. He said the verdict still felt like righteous and “rejoiceful anger,” but empty.

After the verdict I messaged a friend who is married to a police officer, both are white. She said she knows many officers that have zero use of force complaints against them because they understand their roles as law enforcement. They know when to disengage and they are servant officers not warriors. She also said every department has a Chauvin-type warrior-mentality officer in it and hopefully the overall trial will force officers and departments to change.

This is where we need white allies and poc allies to continue following Black communities lead on pushing for comprehensive reforms. If you were out protesting last summer, your job isn’t done. The harder changes come in the quieter times where laws are changes, hiring practices are updated (e.g. hire people from communities of color, stop hiring people for their combat experience), training curriculum is updated or made mandatory, and so on. These system wide changes need continual public pressure to be enforced. One guilty verdict doesn’t absolve the law enforcement system or any system from having to look at itself and changing. These systems do not change on their own, in fact they work to resist change and hold on to the status quo.

We’re All on the Frontlines of Somewhere

I’m also reminded by my friend and colleague RB that the work is everywhere: “As elementary school educators, we are that front line – outside of the home – in the fight to end all forms of racism, hate, biases and prejudices.” As a Black male he is one of the few Black people, and often the only Black adult male. We are all on the frontlines of something, put some of your protest energy there as well, fight for changes so we can have more people of color included in places where we’re often excluded.


Thank you to our Patreon subscribers. At this time I don’t offer ‘extras’ or bonuses for Patreons. I blog after working a full-time job, volunteer and family commitments thus it is hard to find time to create more content. Whatever level you are comfortable giving helps to keep the blog ad-free, pay for back end cost, research cost, supporting other POC efforts, etc. If your financial situation changes please make this one of the first things you turn-off — you can still access the same content and when/if you are able to re-subscribe we’ll appreciate it.

Abby, Adrienne, Adrienne, Agent001, Aimie, Alessandra P., Alessandra Z., Alexa, Aline, Alison F.P., Alison P., Allison K., Amanda, Amber, Amira, Amy H., Amy H.N., Amy K., Amy P., Andie, Andrea, Angelica, Angelina, Ann, Ashlie, Avery, Barb, Barrett, Becky, Brad, brian, Bridget, Brooke B., Brooke D.W., Cadence, Caitlin, Calandra, Callista, Carmen, Carol, Carolyn, Carrie B., Carrie C., Carrie S., Caryn, Catherine L., Catherine S., Cedra, Celicia, Chelsea, Christina, Christine, Clara, Clark, Claudia, Claudia A., Courtney, Dan, Daniel, Danielle, Danya, Darcy, Darcy E., Deb, Denyse, Diana, Diane, Don, E., Ed, Edith B., Edith B. (2), Elizabeth, Emiko, emily, Erica J., Erica L., Erica R.B., Erin, Evan, Francis, Hannah, Hayden, Heather, Heidi, Heidi H., Heidi N and Laura P, Heidi S., Hilary, Hope, J., Jaime, Jake, JelenaJanet, Jean, Jeanne, Jen, Jena, Jenn, Jennet, Jennifer C., Jennifer M., Jennifer T., Jennifer W., Jessa, Jessica F., Jessica G., Jessica R., Jessie, Jillian, Jody, John, Jon G., Jon P., Jordan, Julia, June, Karen, Kari, Kate C., Kate G., Kate T., Kathryn, Katie B., Katie D., Katie O., Kawai, Keisha, Kelli, Kellie H., Kellie M., Kelly, Kimberly, Kirsten, Krista D.B., Krista W., Kristen, Kumar, Kyla, Laura T., Laura G., Laurel, Lauren, Laurie B., Laurie K., Leah, Lindsay, Lisa C., Lisa P.W., Lisa S., Liz, Lori, Lori N., Lyn, Lynn, Maggie, Maka, Marc, Mareeha, Marge, Marilee, Mark, Marki, Mary, Matthew M., matthew w., Maura, McKenzie, Melissa, Meredith, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Mickey, Migee, Mike, Milo, Mindy, Miranda, Misha, Molly, Myrna, Nancy, Nat, Natasha D., Natasha R., Norah, Norrie, Peggy, PMM, Polly, Porsche, Rachel G., Rachel S.R., Raquel, Raquel S., Rebecca O., Rebecca S., Risa, Rise, Ruby, Ruchika, Sarah B., Sarah K.B., Sarah K., Sarah L., Sarah S., Sarena, Sarita, Sean, SEJE Consulting, Shannon, Sharon, Shaun, Shawna, Shelby, Shelley, Skyler, Steph, Stephanie, Stephen, Su, Susan, Susan M., Susan U., Tallie, Tana, Tania DSC, Tania T.D., Tara, TerraCorps, Terri, Titilayo, Tracy, Tyler, virginia, Vivian, Will, Willow, yoko, Yvetteand Zan

If you subscribe to the blog, thank you. Please check fakequity.com for the most up to date version of the post. We often make grammatical and stylistic corrections after the first publishing which shows up in your inbox. Please subscribe, the sign-up box on the right sidebar (desktop version). To see what Erin is reading and recommended books check out the Fakequity Bookshop.