The Sales Hacker Podcast
The Sales Hacker Podcast

Episode · 3 years ago

50. Build Diversity and Inclusion into Your Hiring Practices w/ Simmone Taitt

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

This week on the Sales Hacker podcast, we interview Simmone Taitt, CEO of HeartSpace Consulting, and a longtime sales leader and consultant in the New York community.  Simmone talks about her experience building Gilt City and Kidpass as a woman of color and how she advises companies to build diversity and inclusion into their hiring practices and sales teams.

One, two, one three, hey everybody, it's Sam Jacobs. Welcome to the sales tacker podcast. We've got a great show for you today. We've got simone tape who runs heartspace New York consulting. Now Simone is a sales consultant. Che's run sales teams at places like Guilt City Jet Center in addition to kids pass and now she runs her own consulting business. Simone's also, as we can tell, a woman and a black woman, a person of color, and we talk a little bit about building diversity into your high practices and building diversity into your company, and it's really you know, it's both difficult and simple, and Simone has a lot of insightful comments and a lot of important insights about how exactly to do that and how to make sure that you're building and leaning into diversity and not just paying whip service to it. You know, she talks about how companies that embrace diversity tend to generate twenty percent more revenue per year than competitive companies, companies that do not embrace diversity, and that's based on some recent studies. So listen on to hear this great interview now, before we dive into that interview. Of course we want to thank our sponsors. We've got two big sponsors are the first is chorus. That's course to AI, the leading conversation intelligence platform for high growth sales teams. Chorus records, transcribes and analyzes business conversations in real time to co t reps and how to become topic formers. With Corus, more reps in the quota, new hires ran faster, leaders become better coaches and everyone in the organization can collaborate over the actual voice of the customer. So check out CORUS SOT AI forsts, sales sacer to see what they're up to. Our second sponsors outreach. Our reaches the leading sales engagement platform. Outreach support sales reps by enabling to a humanized communications at scale, from automating the soul sucking manual work that eats up selling time to providing action oriented tips on what communications are working best. Outreach has your back, so check out outreached IO forwards sales hacker to learn more about outreach. Our reach is building something really, really powerful. We had Manny Medina at a revenue collective manage the CEO at a reven collective dinner recently and he's just an incredibly charismatic but also visionary CEO. The company is on an IPO path and we're excited to partner with him. Lastly, we want to thank some of the fans that have reached out. You know, we're now over well over a hundred people that have taken the time to specifically reach out to me on Linkedin and mentioned the podcast. For folks that have reached out recently, Ali Campbell, Chad and Nus, who actually is looking forward to collaborating on some other areas, yen Henschel, and then somebody named Chris Rocks, who, hopefully, Chris, if that's your real name, Mazzeltov, and if it's not your real name, that's also cool. It's an interesting talking point no matter what happens. So thank you for reading it for reaching out. Without further ado, let us listen to Simon Tate from heartspace consulting talk about what she does and less is so well, thanks for listening. Hey, everybody, it's Sam Jacobus. Welcome back to the salesaccer podcast. We are incredibly excited today to have Simon Tate on the show. Simone is a recent new member of the revenue, The New York City revenue collective. But more importantly than that, she is an acknowledged sales, innovation and growth strategy leader here in the New York Tri State area. She may have clients, which she'll tell us about, that extend well beyond New York. But let me tell you a little bit about our background before we start chatting with her. She spent the last fourteen years joining early stage startups like guilt group, Spa Finder, spab booker. She'll tell us if there's a different things and kid pass, with ownership over the go to market strategy and also creating diverse sales teams to drive revenue during those early critical days of growth. So right now she's running heart space. And why? It's a collaborative consulting agency focused on helping companies reach their fullest potential stage by stage, with breaking revenue barriers, accelerating growth and investing in healthy sales ecosystems. Simone, welcome to the show. Thanks him much, Sam I'm really excited to be here and to join you. Well, the the excitement is mutual. So we know that your name is Simone Tate and we know that you're the founder and principle of heart space and why consulting. But what is heart space and why consulting? And tell us a little bit about your mission and about what you're focused on and sort of how you do what you do now. Sure, so heart space is really a passion project and I would say for a long time I was I was consulting. I'm an advisor at some of the best tech accelerators here in New York and I always found that really rewarding for me to be involved in and as an advisor, then going to a consultant and thinking through what that meant for me, having a background and building early states startups and seed or series a and very much understanding those critical first days, especially from the sale side and especially from a growth and and revenue side, and how important it is to start filling coffers...

...pretty early and to also build great teams to do so. When I launched heart space, it was the intention of instead of being at a company for one or two or three years doing this, to have an impact across multiple companies. The one thing that I know for sure is working with startups and also having specific projects are goals that you have to work toward really staying in the trenches with with our clients. That was really important to me and really core to the mission was also putting, putting the heart, the actual heart, and how we lead and where we should be leading from and putting teams together in those first days and having that as a part of the mission to help companies think from a more intuitive sense, to be able to tackle whatever issues there having up front in the sales cycle and in growth, and to also really put a focus on the people. So we are now very proud to have reached just over the year mark and in anniversary, but with, you know, many of our clients being, at this point, global and also right here in New York. So so really important for hardspace in terms of growth and what it means to be helping startups. So you've mentioned sort of intuition or and you've mentioned putting the heart. What does that mean to you specifically? What are you contrasting this positioning to? I'm just curious as and what are the specific tactics that you're introducing to your clients that bring this element of perhaps empathy or heart or intuition into the consulting that you're doing. Yeah, that's a great question. You know, having an emotional quotient in a high one for many leaders, and there have been so many interviews with great women leaders like Ursela Burns from from Oh goodness, I'm losing her company, I can't believe it. Anyway then, and Charles Amberg, of course, that at facebook. But there are a lot of leaders that want to lead from an intuitive from an intuitive place. It doesn't necessarily mean that it's part of everyone's DNA and I do recognize that. You know, if someone were to ask me what is my superpower, my superpower would be intuition and from a place of making decisions that makes sense for a company that's not always tied to the top or the bottom line, that's not always tied to having pressure from the board or or VC's, but that's really intuitive and in sync with where your business is today and where it needs to go. And as a leader, you know sometimes following your intuition can be a risk, but there's that gut sense, which is another word for intuition, I think really leads me. It's led some of the some of my best managers that I've had and CEOS and founders that I've observed over these many years, and so intuition is super important. That is that, I think, directly correlated with the heart and what it means to be a heart led leader, and so empathy is a big part of that. Really understanding and managing to the individual and also making decisions, especially in those early days and as the company evolves, that put, you know, the people at the center of the decisions that you're making for a healthy ecosystem, and I say a healthy sales or specifically with a tremendous amount of pressure to be a revenue contributor. But there's another side of that, which is, you know, we are human and also leading and hearing from the heart, I think, really helps in making decisions that we wouldn't make otherwise under different circumstances. Can you give us a few examples, like specific examples, when you're when you think of when you're describing this, this framework, what are some examples from your consulting business? We can redact the names, but that that demonstrate, you know, not just focusing on the numbers but putting humans at the center. Are there? Are there instances that come to mind? Yeah, there are. You know, there's a great company that focuses on women, typically going through their core customers really a woman that is going through a divorce or has just finished going through a divorce and, contractually speaking, if there is a ring involved, that being an engagement ring or wedding band, that belongs to to the person who who fulfilled that contract in marriage and now the woman has this ring and...

...what we don't realize and what we're not necessarily thinking about, is what it means for a healthy financial future right to drop the Karma of divorce and move on in life. Your ring can be a great asset and a great financial asset. And having those conversations from the sales or to the customer or the client, there has to be a high level of empathy, they're right, a high level of understanding and that emotional quotient comes into play with every single interaction for that sales team, by the way, and helping them along with their scripts and what it means to connect with a customer when actually, you know the bottom line is to get that ring in so that they can help to sell that on a very large private market and takes out the guest work for the customer. There are all these steps, but usually in that first call with that woman, you're not necessarily just throwing all of the logistics out to them. You're listening, you're taking a beat your understanding and and even if you don't understand, which is what I trained the sales team on, the best thing that you can do is listen and we know, you know and sales that twenty rule, eighty percent. Listening most of the time will get you the answers that you need to to really get to connecting with that customer and moving things forward in the sale cycle. So that's a very emotional sale. There's there's nothing, there's nothing around it, whether it's a good divorce or bad divorce, leating with the heart there and coming from a place where empathy matters, that's just one example of one of, you know, our clients that we helped along and where that really came into play core to our mission at heart space. So this is a business. This is a business that re sells specifically marital property, or it's just re sells jewelry, but one of the big pieces of inventory, or one of the big verticals is is engagement rings, which I'm this is a fascinating post. It fascinating. I think it's great actually, which is one of the one of the the big reasons why I wanted to work with them and why I thought there was a lot there to work on actually. And so no, it's not just engagement rings, although diamonds are a big part of what they do. Of course it is all jewelry. So it's a cross everything. Some of their core customers, that being the divorced woman. But categorically speaking, think about real estate and what happens when you have a state jewelry and force pass on so inheritors and there are all sorts of other things, you know collectors, collectors who have been collecting or swap in that, you know, jewelry space with really valuable goods. But but diamonds are a girl and, I guess, a guy's best friend, and certainly is. Certainly there is, you know, dender equality with diamonds. Everyone loves a good diamond. But that's what they do and it is fascinating and they do have a closed network of buyers. It's a tech company heart space. We currently only work with that companies. That has been our core customer and our core client and everything that happens is via an online option, but there is that human part of it. You're not doing everything online. You have access to someone to help you through that process and to really understand this valuable that you have that also has emotional value to it and hopefully sending sending that person on a brighter way in their future. It is the sales team have alerts that are triggered by divorce filings and that's how they figure out. Now Call, although that's that's not a bad idea. I'm it's a very depressing idea, but will share that with the CEO and the dam, the wet who over there would love that. Is there a mechanism that can do that anyway? No, no, you know, most of most of what they're doing is is actually all inbound right. So I got it. Or finding them. They have a tremendous in my opinion. They have a great marketing approach and also, you know, social media campaigns and that sort of thing. So they're targeting the their customer in a great way with messaging that's along the lines of have you thought about what happens next in your life? Because that is a big part of it. What happens next in your life? It can a lot of times be you know, tied to a healthy financial future and have more little...

...bit of a boost, you know, to get there. So, yeah, okay, let's go back a little bit of you know, you've been doing this. You've been doing you've been in startup land for fourteen years. How did you get into heart space? where, first of all, where you from originally? Where'd you grow up? Oh, I am a proud new englander. I was born in Mathchusetts, Springfield, Massachusetts actually, and if you blink you'll miss it, but it is. It is actually the largest city in western New England. I grew up right down the street from the Basketball Hall of fame, which is what I think we're most famous for, and Dr seus is also from from Springfield. So that's I'm from. Yeah, I love I love Dr Seus. And so you're from New England. I'm you. Where'd you go to underground, you know, to walk us through a little bit of, you know, the college and the growing up experiences and then and then how you ended up in startup land and sort of the the core professional experiences that ultimately form the foundation for heart space. Oh, yeah, of course, that's, you know, for me and Regina King, who is the actress that just wore one an Oscar, African American actress that just won her Oscar for supporting roles. She said I'm a product of all the love being poured into me, and that was my childhood. I had all the love. I am actually I have an older brother and sister. They're much older than me, though, eight and ten years older than me, and so by the time I was kind of coming into my own, they were both off in college and so I just had the attention of my mom and dad, which was great, but I was what some people might call a really tenacious child and that I was always going after different things. It was very interested, very curious. That has followed me into, you know, my adulthood and I think it's a core part of just my DNA. I was lucky enough and in my mom is acting actually an immigrant to the country. So when she came to the country, you know, I was nowhere in the purview, but there was in my house anyway, a very constant reminder that we had everything that we needed to do well in school, and so school was a core part of everything that I needed to do. I just had to make my bed every day and go to school. And here's the thing. They didn't say go to school and get straight A's. I mean, I think that would have been their dream. But I was a different kind of child. You know. I was passionate about the thing, things that I loved or that I wanted to know more about, and so I tried all sorts of things. I went, you know, into theater and I played the piano on a classically trained pianist. I played the piano for almost sixteen years before, you know, I decided to not continue with lessons. But, you know, I was into so many different things and I will say that was just a fostered into me, because I know for sure my parents treated me as an individual and they saw that I was a little bit different. I like to talk a lot. I had never had an issue with getting, you know, on stage and speaking my mind in a way that I don't know that you know, other my brother or sister were doing. So I was just, you know, very much encouraged and also, by the time I got into Middle School, my parents were able to afford to send me to a private school and so, although I didn't board, I went to the mcduffie school in Springfield Massachusetts. I didn't board I'd like five minutes way. I had a much different experience. I was surrounded by students who were boarding from all over the world, by languages and different cultures, and so by the time I got to college, and I'm a proud graduate of Lafayette College and Easton Pennsylvania, a proud leopard by the time I got to college. I tried to keep that same energy into college. But, you know, we're going to skip the college years, not for anything except for I think the most interesting thing about college for me was the time that I spend off of campus. So I was very involved, but I also, you know, studied abroad. My father got very ill when I was in my freshman year of college, which then set me on a path to understanding what it meant to take care of myself and my my family did an incredible job getting me through college. I was, you know, the last one, but even so it's kind of those rose colored glasses came off and I was very, very close with my father and I realized that there were, you know, books to be bought, you know for school for the first time, and clothes and meal...

...plans and all these things and I decided in college to start babysitting. And what what actually happened, I think what most people know me for, is I started to outsource babysitting jobs to other women that I was in college with and then I had kind of this ring of babysitters and then I would take a revenue share. I would think that's probably my first foray into into sales um but after I left college, you know, I thought I actually was going to go into politics. I was a law major. I was very much in tune with, you know, saving the world and, you know, getting peanut butter and Jelly sandwiches to all the starving children in the world. And that took a turn for me because what I realized really quickly is that law school was just not the place that I was going to be successful and I started to think about, okay, well, what's the safest thing for me to do? And I actually went to a fortune five hundred company. I went to Saxwith Avenue and they're buying organization. I think most people don't realize, and this is kind of the second stepping stone, I think, into my career in sales. But in the buying office. It's all highly quantitative, like it's numbers. All Day Long. You're moving inventory, you're exercising different parts of your brain and making sure that there's self through, there's an open to buy. So I got very comfortable with numbers very early on in my career and I do believe that's a strong, strong premise to also being equal brained in sales right, so being able to build relationships with with people and understanding how to solve for your customer, but also understanding the business side. And I was very lucky that way because I did get that training early on, but didn't find retail to be the most nurturing place for me. And soon after, I would say about three years or so into being at sacks, I had a conversation with an alum from Lafayette and he put me in touch with a woman that was sitting on the board of SPA Finder, and SPA Finder at the time was a print magazine. If you can believe it, and I mean and I will tell you the distinction between Spa Finder and spot booker in a minute, but spohfinder was a print magazine and Pete and Susie Ellis came in and Pete just he used to always say the Internet is like the wild wild west right now. Online digital media was really coming to the forefront as something that you can measure for brands and report back on. He saw this vision. He had this vision and I went to spofinder pretty early on. I had to really explain to everyone that I was leaving a fortune five hundred company with great benefits and, you know, company named that everyone knew to go to. At the time, spohfinder was definitely less than fifty people, and that I was jumping into sales and that's what I really wanted to do. And needless to say, I got to SPA Finder and it switched very quickly from a print magazine, which they still had once a year as a guide, but to selling online media, ads and and I totally got hooked on to being able to contribute every day, with my voice being heard, with working in small teams, with having a lot of autonomy to manage my relationships and find new relationships and being a full cycle salesperson. And that really was my first my first startup and sales job. was very grateful for spaffinder for that reason, because I was I was young. I was in my early S, but I was literally flying all over the world. I was managing the West Coast for quite some time and so I was flying out there and working with our hospitality partners, very large accounts. I'm talking about like the Four Seasons and Canyon ranch, and at that point spas were also very focused on wellness. So not just the luxury of spas, which didn't seem like an accessible market, but also really focusing on mine body wellness and and moving more in that direction. So I always say I wish I was a little bit older to understand what a good massage really means, but that's a little difficult for meader to say what I was twenty four, twenty five, and I've also looked. I've always looked a bit more mature than than I am, and so, you know, they would s send me to these conferences and I would be in front of clients...

...and you know, I distinctly remember, you know, people saying to me, well, you know when you get to this point in life, and they were well in to their late s or s and you know here was two thousand and twenty five or so. But I always put the customer first, and that was always interesting to me, the relationship and problem solving, getting really creative with them, and then on the other side, you know, being in sales and knowing that every part of my contribution I was also getting some of that back, right. So I just it was a super healthy culture at spot finder in that way, and I think that autonomy really, you know, pushed me into my next things, which I was living at San Francisco. Had actually moved from New York to San Francisco and that I was there for about six months, and because I'm just a master networker, you know, your network is still so important, and I had met this guy and was introduced to him about a year prior and he had just launched a company called jet setter and jet setter was the second property of guilt group. And I came back to New York and we had you know, we had coffee. We had coffee in his office and her like people just basically sitting on top of each other right, because there were so many people in the office. You could tell a startup that was growing very quickly. And you know, he said Look, you've been you have not only all of these huge hospitality clients, but there are target customer and at that point I was managing a small team for spawfinder and he's like, look, we need someone to build out that Org for us. We need someone to really focus also on the partnerships. Were early stage, but we've got funding and we have guilt group, kind of like the mother ship, and we're doing incredible things, but you need to move back to New York. And I said, look, I just moved to San Francisco, you know, six months ago. Very happy there, and he said, you know what? Okay, fine, well, we're launching another company and that company is guilt city and if you have a couple of minutes, I would love for you to connect with the president. And this all happened on a Wednesday. I ended up having a conversation. No resume, no anything, as these things go. And happened on a Wednesday. I had an offer by Friday and I just remembered saying, you know, this is not a rocket ship that I I need to be on. That you know. So I went to guilt city and I was their first hire outside of the New York office. I subsequently, over the four plus years that I was at guilt built out our west coast market, those sales teams was one of the top revenue contributors. Came back to New York, built an entirely new sales org for guilt and we went into tertiary markets and you know, it was it was an incredible time to be at guilt, which was one of the one of the UNICORNS, you know, in New York at that time, with Kevin Ryan at the helm and Alexis and Alexandra. It was an incredible ride while I was there. Yeah, I remember watching, I guess, gossip girl and seeing there's big, heavy guilt sponsorship. So there is always guilt boxes coming in through through those a those very fancy apartments. Thank you for that background the question I have, which is just sort of, I think, one of the points of focus and emphasis for your career. But you know, as a woman and as a person of color in a male dominated industry, what's been your experience? I'm just you know, we talked a lot about diversity and inclusion on sort of a superficial or generic level many times, but you face many of these issues on a daily basis and you particular, you probably face them even more so as a you know, twenty five year old first joining spotfinder. So I guess one question is, what has been your experience over the last couple of years as as both a woman and a person of color, dealing dealing with so many different both buyers and then managers and founders, and just in a world where it's a lot of white men that are making the decisions? What's been your experience? Yeah, I'm so glad that you asked me that question, Sam, because not only is it really important for companies of all sizes, but also being really intentional in in the early days for startups, about what diversity means for them, and for me, what it meant coming from my background, is, you know, I have to be honest. I you couldn't tell me that I was being treated any differently in those early years, and part of it was my own, well, I can say this about myself, but my own ignorance to what...

...the industry was actually becoming and what it looked like before I moved to San Francisco. So when I was here in New York, spot finder, although, you know, a really healthy culture there, I was totally unleashed and felt such a sense of autonomy. There were very little times that I was getting a no right to either my ideas or things that I wanted to pursue or anything that I wanted to introduce into the ecosystem as a new way of selling when I started managing people. So that was a very nurturing environment where being a woman, Anna and and a woman of color, and let me be really clear here, it is not always easy to make the distinction in discrimination, if that's happening bias or unconscious bias, when I have both going for me, which are both in amazing things. By the way, I love being a woman and I love being a wit of color. Right so, but it's hard to make that distinction and say, okay, it's one over the other unless it's super blant. And some of those blatant blatancies started to occur for me as I went from just being a salesperson, right, individual contributor, just salesperson, kind of low on the Totem Pole, to going on that Career Jungle Gym and going into leadership positions, and it became really apparent. I spent some time in enterprise sales for pure tech company, very, very apparent when I was dealing with and working with companies that were, you know, not as progressive that have been around forever, and that was the end customer that wouldn't even take meetings with me and less I you know, I had my founder or counterpart who was either white male or white woman. You know, see seed in the age of social media and Linkedin obviously being able to immediately look someone up. I mean there are some I'll use two examples, one internal, one external. But there was a point in which I was working with business analysts and, you know, I understand numbers very well and so my analyst would actually, you know, just confirm everything and I had a weekly meeting in which I had to which I had to present, and every single week, the same person, which happened to be, you know, a man, a white man, the same person, would question my numbers week over week over week. Now this point I was managing it, a thriving team, but it was at some points felt very intentional and then I kind of realize, I don't even think he knows that he's doing this, which is where I learned what unconscious bias was actually. There's another instance in which I, you know, was sitting in an executive meeting and I'm, you know, my laptop there's a sticker that had just has the word girls in it. I'm not going to mention the company's name. And you know, the Ceteo slams his computers shut and he said, you know, I can't, I'm not going to sit in this meeting with like a sticker like that because this company, you know, that's not what this company is. What if I had a sticker that said blank, blank, White Mail? I ended up leaving that company about a month later. And so what is your answer? Your perspective to that, cteo, is don't worry about it, or well, no, guess what, we're your answer? And that moment, Oh yeah, no, that was an you know, I just started talking about this particular story recently, more publicly, because it happens so much and and I didn't know it was happening. I mean early on I really didn't know that things, scenarios like this, were even allowed. And and I will say part of it is because you are moving so fast, when at lightning speed, when you're building a start up, there is, if you're doing it right, there is very, very, very little room for ego, very little room for minutia. Things that are distracting. Well, this isn't. This wasn't my nutia. It wasn't distracting. At that point I had heard enough stories, that had been through enough of my experiences and actually, interestingly enough, that particular company was actually female founded. It was a woman founder and it was one uncomfortable my...

...response was, so, let me just be clear, because it just so happened that that sticker was also representing one of our investors. So I said, let me be clear. Is it because it has the word girls in it? Because this is one of our investors. You and I would not be sitting here with a job if we didn't actually, if we weren't being funded by vcs and firms that were invested in women. So I just want to be clear. There he refused to answer the question. He said he's not getting into that HR loop. Okay, that was that response in and my my I wasn't reactive. I'm actually pretty pretty good in conflict, especially conflict conversations and resolutions, again coming from, you know, that place of heart and empathy and really wanting to understand. But sometime the resolution is to leave, and I didn't leave reactively. I had the conversation and I said, I cannot work with someone who I know doesn't respect me, has very little dignity in the work that we're trying to accomplish together. But overall, I think, especially for the company, that's just that's just wasn't an authentic I could not represent myself authentically. In other words, I couldn't just show up as a woman and a black woman every day right. That was yeah, that in and of itself was an issue. So so I did. I did exit. I have sort of two questions and I think the answers will be probably extensive. The first is around this concept of unconscious bias and particularly as cultural norms and cultural awareness evolve and shift. And I'm a obvious as you know since we've met in person. I'm a white man. What are what's your advice two folks like me that want? First of all, you know I try, I try to bring as much empathy and heart into nearly every interaction that I can. Sometimes, you know, my temper in a different setting might get the better of me, but generally I'm trying to bring my very best self into every interaction. But I'm sure that there are still times when I do something wrong. I say something wrong. The example that's on my mind these days is the phrase you guys as a euphemism for all of the people, which increasingly feels like that's not probably the right way to address a large group of people since, frankly, most of them aren't guys. But what's your advice for how we should address unconscious by US and how we how we should try to ensure that we don't do something wrong, we don't offend somebody unintentionally, even if we have the best intentions at heart? Yeah, so damn. I'm sure, on behalf of many, many of your listeners, they're so happy that you've best that question and and so, therefore, on behalf of many, many of your listeners, I am one voice, right, I am one voice and I am representative, but I am one voice and I think that's exactly where it starts. I've said, you need to be managing to the individual, really understand people on your team, team and what drives them, what you know encourages them, what rewards you know. I look at building diverse teams and focusing on diversity almost exactly the same right, and that is I don't mean just racially diverse, I mean diverse backgrounds, diverse socio economic backgrounds, diverse schools. You know, I was at an event last night and, you know, someone said, look, everyone on my team is from, you know, Connecticut or New York, right, and that is actually a point of diversity, because or a lack of diversity, I should say. And so part of what you say, I want to say it's really starts in how you're hiring. And there's this hole, and I'm just going to debunk it right now, and I may get some mail over this, but that it's a pipeline issue. And primarily it is not a pipeline issue. primarily it is a hiring issue when you get to either the hiring managers, middle management, hiring managers going through the interview process. Conscious bias is a part of all of us. There are, you know, stereotypes and influences that we've had our entire lives, and so it's starts from self. It starts from you knowing that you may have an unconscious bias or a few. Really understanding that and being aware, I think, is definitely the first step. Secondly, it is...

...how you are hiring and asking those questions in the interview process, in the hiring process. That's not isolating someone with a more diverse background or someone that looks different than everyone else on the team, but making sure that you're, you know, uncovering and also being really honest about things, like we pride ourselves and having either a diverse company or we are working really hard to make that happen. Right. Think also, no matter what is having uncomfortable conversations is not always a liability, and you can quote me on that, right. It could really good manager and good leadership and colleagues and pairs pair to pair influence, especially we are living in the same world around us. We might view it differently, but we are all sharing this space and so having those conversations about being very intentional in the conversations with an endpoint of we are lacking diversity. That is an issue for us because it does truly affect revenue. Forbes had a great article last last summer and the Boston Consulting Group. There results were, out of about seventeen hundred companies, that having a diverse team is about a nineteen percent. They have nineteen percent higher revenue than other companies that don't have diverse teams. So it's not just worth the investment right to bring in women and people of Color, but it actually directly affects the top and bottom line. And so people like you, right and and colleagues and and the human to human interaction that needs to happen, actually needs to happen in exactly this way. Ask The question, how can I do better or look? I actually think I'm doing pretty well. I would like to be able to influence more those around and around me that look like me. You know, how does that happen? And it's not looking to the one black person or one Latina Person. You know, it's actually a in has to be a broader conversation within an organization and a commitment to not avoiding what shouldn't be an elephant in the room. Right, really attention all there. It's hard and I think one of the things that sometimes is hard is this double awareness that a, you know, I'm nervous to a presume too much because I really don't have the experience of being a black woman. Obviously late, and you know, in many ways every door has been open for me, and so I'm super conscious that I don't want to overextend it. At the same time, I'm also nervous sometimes, or I feel I want to make sure that it's also that I'm being treated as fairly, you know, but which I mean I've I prob I'm sure I am being treated for I'll give you a specific example, which is not related to sales or hiring or anything. It's I'm sitting next to in the movie theater with my wife and there's a group of young women and they're talking very loudly and they were talking through the previews and if you've watched any of the messages from the movie theaters, they don't want they don't want people talking during with the movie, and I personally get really frustrated. So I lean over and I say I hope that you'll stop talking when the movie begins, and they the woman leans over to me and says, I bet you wouldn't have said that to me if I were a man, and I was. I ended up thinking about it because maybe she's right, but on the other hand I really don't. You know, I didn't have a point of view on her gender. It was more that I just don't like people that talk during the movies. And I guess the point I'm making is sometimes I'm trying. I'm trying my best and then it feels like you're still slapped on the wrist and it. I guess that can be a frustrating that can be a frustrating experience. Not that she was a spokesperson for all women or all black women or anybody right, she's just a kid in a movie theater. But I think that's some of the challenge, which is trying to understand where am I overstepping, where is it, where's it appropriate, and how do I develop a sense of confidence when clearly, when you look back on things that people used to do, that those things are not appropriate and we're not appropriate, and yet those people felt comfortable in the moment. So right, I don't really know if I have a question, more just a statement. Well, now I hear you want the thingmen, thank you for sharing that scenry out. You know, the one big thing, if you know, if we can take anything away from this part of the conversation, is I have to encourage myself every day to show up as my authentic self, right, and so I encourage everyone around me to do the same. And you're totally right. It goes beyond professional,...

...it goes beyond your office work environment, it is how you are showing up every single day as a global citizen, as a person that is walking through this world with, hopefully, other people that are also striving to be their most authentic self. And when you are able to get to that point right, and it's evolving, but when you are, when you are there, you certainly cannot control anyone else's responses, but you can control how you show up. So if you're constantly and consistently the person who is showing up and saying, HMM, that doesn't feel right, that doesn't look right, that's not sitting well with me, we need to do more diversity training, not just one big day where you shut down the company. You have it one time every ten years. You know when things happen to happen. You know really being intentional, both in your home space and also in your work space, only comes from when you're showing up your authentic stuff. And believe me, there are plenty of people who are there authentic selves and it's very hard to understand their point of view right like that's it doesn't make it any easier. Just because of saying be authentic, I actually in I want you to be authentic, so that I know you know where we connector where we do not connect at all, and so so that I would just say to that you know you you can and here are some here's a really practical thing and it's just one very good example. So in the US anyway, about ten percent of board seats are not filled. Yet they're less than I think the stuff is like ten percent of women don't even sit on boards for profit boards, right, and so it's very well known that it's it's what they call a boys network. And so what would happen if these board seats were filled, not just filled, but actually filled with women, women of Color, people of Color in general, right, making diversity really matter at the board level. Mean, I gave this that about at that nineteen percent more revenue for companies that just invest in diversity and have diverse teams. Can you imagine what would happen at the board level? And so, you know, being the person that's able to affect that change and just make the recommendation could be you, Sam right, it could be someone that looks like you. So instead of putting, I don't know, the next guy up for it, you know, you're actually very intentionally and committing to choosing a woman from your network who is able and, you know, ready to take on something like that, even speaking engagements, you know, making sure that there are women on panels. I went to a conference a couple of years ago, a sales conference actually, for there were about three hundred and fifty executives. They didn't even take the easy way out. They didn't even have a woman as the moderator. There were no women at all on any of their panels all day long. And, as you know, these conferences are really expensive, so it was maybe like a four thousand dollar ticket or something like that. It was really crazy to me and I just said I am not spending company money and coming to another conference and less I know, I'm sitting on a panel, I'm speaking or there's someone that looks like me that is participating in that way right. So when you take those commitments and we can be we can be intentional that way, I think it's great advice. Simon. We've reached the end of our time together, sadly, I know, and it's where actually a few minutes over. So there's a lot of folks that are listening right now that probably want to reach out to you. Maybe they want to ask for advice, maybe they want to hire heart space. So I assume that's okay. If so, what's your preferred method of outreach? How should people reach out to you if they're listening and they want to engage with you in some way? Oh sure, yeah, so I'm happy to share that. So my website is heart space, N Hycom, very easy, heart space and Hycom, and email is just info at heart space and Ycom and you'll respond and I will respond. Awesome. Okay, Simone, thanks so much for being on the salesacker podcast. We've really enjoyed the conversation. If you want to reach out to Simon Info at heart space, is it just heart spacecom or heart space? And why? Heart space, NYCOM, Info at heart space, on Hycom and and hire heart space to bring both heart and intuition into the science of sales. Someone. Thanks for being...

...on the show. Thanks so much, Sam. Everybody, as SAM's corner, really a really interesting and powerful conversation with Simon tape, who runs heart space and why? Consulting and and we talked a lot about, you know, the this question of diversity and I think again, you know, she mentioned the statistic I think it's companies that embrace diversity grow at a nineteen percent faster rate than companies that do not. So obviously there's there's a powerful roi case to embrace diversity. Diversity doesn't just mean gender and it doesn't just mean race or ethnicity. It also means age and it also means diversity of experiences. And one of the problems if you're solely relying on referrals to grow your company or your team is that they're going to end up referring people most commonly that are like them. And so you have to really be proactive about building diversity right into the top of the funnel of your hiring practice. In, you know, a cruing practice and it's sometimes difficult to do because inertia and momentum will dictate that, you know, if if everybody loves working at your company and referrals are the cheapest, most cost effective way of getting great hires, you want to rely on that source. But you need to push yourself to build pipelines of candidates that are not just focused on who everybody knows, but focused on a different kind of person. Go where where different kinds of people congregate, where they hang out so that you can build a recruiting pipeline. The other point that Simone made is that diversity training isn't a once in New Year. Think you've got to celebrate diversity on an ongoing basis, and so let's do that. Let's make sure that we don't just do diversity training once a year. I guess the final thing I'll say is that with an embraceive diversity, you know, if you're listening out there or your head of people, there's also got to be the corresponding openness and understanding that culture is shifting and evolving at a very rapid rate and there needs to be a tolerance on the other side for folks that, you know, if they bring on out of date perspective but are willing to be educated, that we give them that, that we tolerate that and that we give them that opportunity to be educated. You know, so much on I don't know if you go on twitter. I stopped going on twitter so much because everything is an instant condemnation of any idea that seems different or contrary, without really any consideration. So, you know, every time there's a hot piece of news, we have to immediately react to it and think about what we think, and so and so should resign and so and so should be fired, and you know, many times that's true. But if we want to embrace to verse who, we also want to do it in a safe space, in the psychologically safe space that welcomes and embraces all kinds of new ideas and helps shepherd the folks that have older ideas into the new world. It's really, really complicated. It's hard to do and I've been you know, and I've got someone learning to do their myself and I'm working on it. But I think it's a great conversation and it's absolutely a conversation that must happen because you do bring, you know, I know that there's a lot of folks out there that are convinced that you know, you hear diversity and you think some strange things to yourself. You think I'm not a racist or I'm not a sexist, but you bring a lot of unconscious bias to different interactions. You bring ways that the world has worked for a very, very long time and those ways may need questioning, you may need to re examine them and many times, many cases, we do need to reexamine them. So doesn't mean, you know, walk on eggshells every time, but it's but it does mean bring empathy into every interaction and bring authenticity and bring your heart as as Simone talks about. That's how we're going to bring this gap. That's how we're all going to align as a global community. So that's my spiel and I hopeful, hopefully, it was. It was insightful and if you are offended by it or just thought it was generic bullshit, that's fine. You can reach out to me on Linkedin. That's linkedincom forward the word in and then flowards last Sam f Jacobs. Reach out to me tell me what you think. Of course we want to thank our sponsors. Those sponsors are outreach, the leading sales engagement platform, and chorus, the leading conversation intelligence platform for high gross sales teams. Thanks so much for listening. We will talk to you next time.

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