Imperfect Allyship with Erica Courdae

Imperfect Allyship with Erica Courdae

Tara Newman: Hey hey everyone. Today I’m so excited to be here with Erica Courdae. Erica Courdae is a very, very special human being in my life and in my heart. Erica has been a client of mine. She is a founding member of The BRAVE Society. I consider her a dear friend. She is the Bold Leadership Revolution’s Diversity Consultant. She is just an overall, amazing, gifted human being and I am so excited to have her with us today on the podcast, to discuss a very important topic for leaders of all kind around diversity, equity, equality and inclusion. Hey Erica.

Erica Courdae: Hello, hello. See, now I feel like I need everybody to introduce me like that. Wow. That’s pretty awesome. Thank you.

Tara Newman: My heart bursts whenever I think of you, whenever I see you. We’ve had the good fortune of being together in a room this year, twice, where we’ve actually got to hug each other and I’m really looking forward to more of that. Why don’t you tell everybody what you do. I know you do a lot of things so bring it all to the table.

erica courdae headshot for bold leadership revolution podcast graphic on imperfect allyship

Erica Courdae: I do. I am somehow now a dual business owner. I started as an accidental entrepreneur. I’ve been a hairstylist in the beauty industry for over 20 years and Silver Immersion is my beauty brand. One of the lovely things about what I do in that area, which includes me having a brick and mortar salon as well as having artists and myself as well and we go onsite and we do weddings and photo shoots and all kinds of branding goodness with photographers. I rebranded and I found that equality and really just putting a spotlight on things that didn’t have enough of a spotlight came up for me. I wanted to highlight the types of beauty that doesn’t normally get seen. Women of color, women that aren’t a size two, women that aren’t 22. Women that weren’t white. Women that didn’t have straight hair, long hair. Same sex couples were a really big thing for me.

We not only service same sex couples but I wanted to actually scream from the rooftop that we advocate for you and I literally did that and wrote a blog post and said, “If you don’t like it, kick rocks.” Yes, I told people to go away, you didn’t like what I was talking about. When I started Erica Courdae, which is my coaching and consulting business and I specialize in helping women, specifically business leaders, with their diversity, equity and inclusion journey, I realized that my ethics from Silver Immersion really carried over into Erica Courdae. This is not just a, “Oh, this is what my business does,” these are my ethics. This is how I move through life. This is how I raise my children. This is how I have conversation, which is my catalyst for change. I feel like nothing can shift if we’re not talking.

I’m a firm believer that, when you move into spaces like imperfect allyship, you are trying to create an equitable work environment and you are trying to really foster growth. None of these kinds of things can happen fi you don’t have conversation.

Tara Newman: Yeah. I love that. You take a big stand for imperfect allyship. You kind of blipped through that over there but I want to call it out. Can you explain one, what is allyship, because this might be a new term to some of my listeners?

Erica Courdae: Yes. Allyship is when someone, typically someone who is white and cis gender, which cis gender means that you identify with the gender that you were so it would be a white, heterosexual woman, for example, when she says, “You know what? I am seeing some things happening in the world. I’m not okay with them. I no longer want to silently cosign these things. I want to use my platform and my privilege to bring light to things that aren’t okay and facilitate the change that I actually want to see happening.”

Imperfect allyship is, for example, a white woman saying, “You know what? I am seeing implicit bias happening in my children’s school. I’m seeing systemic racism pop up in some of the people of color that are in my neighborhood and I no longer want these things to happen on my watch when I’m not doing anything to keep them from happening.” With someone going in and gaining awareness around, this is how I was raised, and a lot of things were glossed over, because this is great for me as a white woman but what does the black woman that lives next door have to go through? What does the Hispanic family across the street experience? As you begin to learn more about experiences that may not look like yours, you’re saying, “Hey, something needs to change,” and you begin to use your voice to say, “Hey, I saw this child isn’t getting enough attention. Do you think that maybe there’s some other things going on?” You see someone in the store that’s not being treated fairly and you use your voice to say, “That’s not okay.” Imperfect allyship is you doing your work to learn what systemic racism is.

To learn what racism is versus prejudice. As you’re learning, you’re not waiting until some magical point that never happens to actually do something. When you say, “I’m not okay with this as it is. I want to be a part of a change but I’m going to start that today.” That is where imperfect allyship shows up.

Tara Newman: Yeah. This has been huge for me personally because, what I’ve experienced is, I’m open to learning these things, I’m open to understanding where my biases are. I’m open to looking at things through a different lens or perspective. I’m learning and then I feel like, but I’m not ready. I’m going to say something, it’s going to come out wrong, I’m not 100% sure what to do in this situation. This is very new to me. It actually comes up, not always just in these situations with race or sexual orientation or anything like that. I mean, sometimes it’s just things come up and you’re like, “I don’t know how to take a stand for this.” Because you’re trying to do it a certain way or maybe you’ve never done it before and you give people permission to really do it imperfectly. Really, what you do when you do that, from what I’ve noticed, is you’re creating even more allies.

Erica Courdae: I want people to feel as though they are comfortable to do even one small action today. It’s just like someone says, “Oh, I want to lose 20 pounds but I can’t start until I’ve lost 19.” That’s not how that works. You want to start when you realize that you want to make change because activity is what needs to happen. Inactivity is simply thinking about it but that’s not actually doing anything. There’s no movement behind it, let alone, forward movement.

Tara Newman: Yeah. My journey has happened where there was awareness. There was a lot of awareness. My awareness started coming when Danielle La Porte, had that branding fiasco. Has to be like 18 months ago already.

Erica Courdae: Yeah. It was a little while ago.

Tara Newman: If you don’t know who Danielle La Porte is, she is a… How do you describe who Danielle… She’s an author, she’s a speaker. She’s a writer. She’s an influencer. I don’t know if you can call her an influencer.

Erica Courdae: Yeah.

Tara Newman: She went through a branding initiative and she put out a couple of images that were problematic. One was, I think they were arms or legs.

Erica Courdae: It was kind of like, someone pulling someone up was the image.

Tara Newman: Right, for a new program she had. It was a darker colored skin then lighter, then lighter, then lighter, then lighter and the name of her program was Lighter, which was like, what exactly are you trying to communicate here? Then one of the images was a horse that almost looked like a Ku Klux Klan horse. This black horse, it was kind of knightly or whatever. People had really taken to this posting of hers with displeasure and pointing out the ways that this was harmful. What was really startling to me, was that I would have scrolled right past it. I don’t follow her. The only reason it popped up in my feed was because somebody I knew had commented on it. What I noticed was, was that, it wouldn’t have stopped me in my tracks. I wouldn’t have understood.

I wouldn’t have visually understood what it meant. Until I stopped and started reading the comments. The comments were incredibly enlightening around calling out systemic racism, around calling out… What were some of the other things it was calling out? Specifically? Just a lack of awareness around her branding initiative.

Erica Courdae: Colorism. There was a number of problems. To me, why do we keep having these things happen? I can’t think of how many of these things over the past 18 months have happened where, who’s in these marketing departments not realizing that there’s issues with these things? Who is proofreading this stuff saying, “Yeah, we’re good.”

Tara Newman: I think that just proves the whole point of that, this country has been based on a white lens. When you look at it, when you look at people in positions of power, people who are making decisions, people who are politicians, we’re first starting really, to overturn what’s happening even in congress this year where we have more women and more minorities that are deciders, that are voters, that are legislating for the actual makeup of this country. That was my moment where I was like, you need to check in Tara because you skipped right over this. I started following some of the women and the people who were posting on that post who were educating people. Danielle La Porte actually deleted that post, which was horrible because there was a lot… It was horrible for the women who put their time and effort into it. It’s horrible because again, it’s the continuation of silencing minorities, silencing women because people of power silencing and marginalizing others.

Then it was horrible for somebody like me because I learned a lot from that. There were other people in the world who could also learn if they were open and willing to, from that post. That was my first moment where I really had to start checking in. What I did is, I started learning. I started observing. It’s very easy to get stuck in awareness, is my point of this whole thing. I got very stuck in awareness. Then it came time where we were launching The BRAVE Society, of which you are a founding member. You are responsible for these conversations within The BRAVE Society, and you do it incredibly well and compassionately. Allowing us all to show up imperfectly, which is such a gift. I went to fill these founding… I wanted to have 12 founding members and I looked around at who I would be asking and inviting to be founding members. It dawned on me that everybody looked like me. Not only did everybody look like me, I was like, “Well, I do know people. I know Erica. I know other people who I could ask and reach out to to be founding members.” Then I felt like that would be contrived.

Erica Courdae: Right.

Tara Newman: At this point. I set the intention in that moment. This was my first action. I’m sharing this because this was hard for me and I don’t think this is easy for people but we need to do it anyway. I set the intention that I was going to expand my network. I was going to have very clear boundaries around what rooms I would and wouldn’t put myself in. If I saw a conference and they has speakers on the stage but they weren’t representing minorities, they weren’t representing different sexual orientations, they were representing women, if they were just-

Erica Courdae: Age and all the things.

Tara Newman: There was no diversity on these conferences and these summits, on these mastermind groups or opportunities. I was not going to attend. If I was asked to participate, I have templated language that goes back and asks them if they can share with me who else will be on the panel, who else would be speaking, who else would be at the summit, to ensure that when a marketing moment happens, it’s not my face with all people who look like me. Because that’s not what I want.

Erica Courdae: Most people are afraid to do that. Exactly that.

Tara Newman: I set this intention and shortly after setting the intention, Erica starts posting diversity topics, diversity conversations, asking. She asks the best questions. Asking these questions. I’m like, “Oh, crap. She’s my founding member.” She just bubbled herself up. This is really started this amazing partnership, I’d like to say.

Erica Courdae: Agreed.

Tara Newman: Between the two of us. Erica and I just had a call last week where she came in and did some consulting with me on the upcoming BRAVE Society launch because, I want to make sure that when I’m going out there and I’m marketing, that I’m representing diversity. One of the things, talking about diversity, that Erica shared is she’s like, “We want diversity of diversity.” Can you tell me what you meant by that? I mean, I know what you meant by that but I think that’s such a great-

Erica Courdae: It’s a great term for the simple fact that, the minute someone says diversity, I think it’s very easy for you to immediately think black or white. That’s not what diversity is. Diversity is race, it’s religion, it’s sexual orientation, it’s age, it’s size, it’s hair texture. These are all some of those… These are still just pieces of it. These are all societal indicators that can be used to marginalize or to separate people. When you being to talk about how these things aren’t looked at or how there’s limited inclusivity around these things and you address where these individuals or these groups are not getting, they are not getting the same things that they need to create an atmosphere of equity, which equity for me is everybody being able to start at the same level playing field.

I always love this picture that I found online, which I’ll have to find it to actually credit the person. It’s basically three people. One’s very tall. One’s medium height and one’s short but if you give them all the same box, they’re still not coming from the same place. It’s giving the person that’s the shortest, the same height box because basically, they’re all trying to look over a fence at like, a baseball game or something. If you give the shortest person, the bigger box and they can see what the tall person can see. The middle person is getting what they need to be raised up so they can see as well. It’s giving everyone a fighting chance versus, oh, well you started way up here so you’re off to the races and you’re already 20 paces ahead where this person that’s 10 steps behind where the starting line even was, they don’t have that same chance. It has absolutely no consideration for their intelligence, how much drive they have, their ability, their skillset. None of those things have come into play because they are going through a system that is already designed for them to lose.

Tara Newman: I really love that visual of the people of different heights standing on the different boxes and leveling that playing field so everyone can come in from a similar perspective and start at the same point.

Erica Courdae: Yes.

Tara Newman: What does diversity, equity and inclusion mean to you and why is this your life work? I want to hear your words.

Erica Courdae: Diversity, the main thing with diversity is about getting out of your own head, getting out of your own reality and considering things that don’t look like what you think, feel or do on a regular basis and considering realities that don’t look like you’re own and understanding that they’re still just as real just because this isn’t what your day-to-day looks like. If you’re someone that comes from an affluent place, that doesn’t mean that someone that doesn’t have a car, has less access when it comes to money or to opportunities, that doesn’t mean that their reality doesn’t exist. Or that they are less than because it’s different. Being able to consider something else that you don’t see on a daily basis because it’s very easy to just go in the rut that we all kind of wear into the ground for ourselves and this is what we do everyday and we don’t think outside of that.

Diversity is being able to consider that there are realities that don’t look like yours and they are still just as real. Equity again, is getting to that place of everybody being able to have access to things to be able to start from a more level playing field. Obviously, what you do with it is up to you. That’s where I think a lot of people tend to think that it means, “Oh, we’re just going to give everybody welfare. Nobody has to work.” That’s not what that means but if someone’s starting with a disadvantage, then you have to acknowledge that they’re not starting from the same place. Letting everybody start from that same spot.

Inclusion is being able to have people represented from a more equal place. I’ll us an example that, when I grew up, my mother would purposely not buy dolls that were white because 90% of the dolls were white and it was very rare to find a doll that did look like me. She was determined that I was going to have dolls that look like me. Now, flash forward, I am 39 and my children had more access to things that look like them but they’re still not the majority. They’re not even half the majority. It’s realizing that having that representation is a big part of the first two because, if you don’t see that things are possible for you, then it can sometimes be difficult to internalize that it is possible. Some people can jump past that, everybody can’t. When you don’t see that you’re beautiful, that you are included, that you matter, then that can undermine your self worth and your self value because you think, well, nobody sees me. I’m invisible. I don’t matter.

Much of it is being able to simple feel as though you exist and be validated in that.

Tara Newman: This is why diversity in leadership is so important that, it’s so important to me that leaders, that we have representation so that any young woman or boy can look and see themselves as a leader. To see somebody like them, size, religion, sexual orientation, color, ability, whatever, can see themselves as a leader. This was really driven home to me when I went to see the Rockettes. You know this story Erica.

I go with my daughter’s Girl Scout troop to go see the Rockettes in December and I had never been to the Rockettes despite being a life long New Yorker. I was very excited. We were going with the Girl Scouts. The Girl Scouts are an incredibly diverse group of girls, especially in the New York City metro area where they’re coming in from all different areas. I look up on stage, the Rockettes do what they do best, they fan out in a line and they all look the same. I mean, not only do they all look the same, they are all white, very, very white, like porcelain white, very beautiful. Porcelain white, blonde hair, and I’m like, “I don’t even see…’ Skinny. They’re all about the same height because we need to look uniform in a line. I’m like, “Shit, I don’t even see myself up there.” Where’s the girl with the hips? Where’s the girl with the dark hair?

I think they had one woman of color on the stage, oddly placed her in the middle, which felt awkward to me. They then broke out into… They had an ensemble cast come on where they kind of broke out into dancing and they broke out into boy/girl partners. Male/female partners. I’m like, okay. We’re still doing this? It just felt very stale. I think that’s pretty normal to see same sex people together so I don’t understand why we’re bringing men on.

Erica Courdae: Women will dance with their friends.

Tara Newman: Right.

Erica Courdae: Why are we making this overly sexualized to begin with?

Tara Newman: I’m just like, okay. Then they had some characters in this. They were actors. They could have very easily, I’m sure that people in wheelchairs and things like that, also dance, even if they didn’t, there was still a place for them in this production. In this ensemble cast, which they didn’t have. It was just, I was very disappointed in what I was seeing. I’m sitting there and I’m like, okay. We have an auditorium full of girls, height difference, weight difference, color difference. I’m sure there were girls in there who were struggling with their sexual orientation at 10 years old or 11 years old or what have you because we know that the his happens as young as three and four. People are born this way.

Erica Courdae: Correct.

Tara Newman: I’m sure that there were people who might have had walkers or crutches or whatever they had. The majority of the people sitting in this theater, did not see themselves. Did not see being a Rockette as possible for them.

Erica Courdae: No.

Tara Newman: Okay. Maybe that’s the jam with the Rockettes but if you took this as leadership, I cannot be in a world where we have leaders standing on a stage, take the Rockettes off, put leaders on, thought leaders, authors, writers, business owners, executives, CEO, whatever. Founders. Whatever you want to call, on a stage and for girls in the audience, or boys, to not see themselves on that stage. That’s not okay with me.

Erica Courdae: None of it is but it’s very easy to not… Unfortunately, it happens so often that you don’t even realize how much it is until you realize, there it is again, there it is again, there it is again. Really simple one was, I have an amazing friend who is my assistant, Tiffany and her daughter, who I love her dearly, it was very interesting to me, when we’ve talked previously about how our children were born into a world where a black man was president so they know that that was possible. That was all that they grew up with. Then they got an orange man. That’s another color. They grew up knowing this. When I was talking to my friend’s daughter, the very natural, next progression for her was, she literally said, “So now the next thing is a woman.” Because she started at a place to where this black man was able to be president where someone like me who never thought it would happen in my lifetime and the reality was, as a black person, the only thought that I had when he was giving his speech, when he was being inaugurated both times, please don’t shoot him. Please don’t shoot him. Please don’t shoot him. That was my thought. I didn’t grow up.

Tara Newman: Look at my privilege. That was not my thought.

Erica Courdae: Oh, and every person that I know that looks like me, that was… We were like, please don’t. Please. Because well, there’s a lot of people that aren’t happy with it. Our children were born to where their bar shifted. I wasn’t born it. I think, Carter was probably the president when I was. All I remember was Reagan and forward. White men, old white men. Then all of a sudden, here comes Barack Obama. Even when Hilary Clinton decided to run, it was very different. I didn’t have that vision of Shirley Chisum when she tried to do it.

My children grew up knowing that that was a thing so their bar shifted. It’s very different because now it’s like, oh, this can happen so of course, this is the logical next thing to happen. Then of course, we have these conversations with our children and well, this is kind of what can happen, this is what this looks like, this is why this could be a struggle. Then there’s that place to have that dialogue. It’s very different from if it didn’t exist. How many conversations did we not have? How many children never saw themselves represented in that type of form? How many women just thought, “Well, I can’t be an AOC. These things don’t exist.” They weren’t a possibility like this when I was little. My kids get that.

Tara Newman: Yeah. It’s so interesting because Avery came home and I guess they’re learning about astronauts, I don’t know what the hell they’re learning about but they just watched the Apollo 13 movie. She’s like, Avery’s such a kinesthetic learner and she does great with like, when she can be in a move experience and when she’s coming home, she’s rattling off this whole thing that’s just such a great movie. There was so much tension. It had my heart in my mouth mom. Then I’m like, Houston, we have a problem. She’s like, “Yeah, they kept talking to Houston.” I’m like, “No Avery, we really have a problem because you were not given the full story there and we now need to sit down and watch hidden treasures.” Right? We now have the ability to go-

Erica Courdae: Hidden Figures. Hidden Figures. Okay.

Tara Newman: Yeah. Hidden Figures. We now have the ability to counteract that in a lot of ways that we haven’t in the past and we need more of that.

Erica Courdae: Correct. Correct. It’s amazing how, like you said, just being able to have more space to have those conversations is really where everything starts because, bottom line, diversity, equity, inclusion, socioeconomic bias, prejudice, racism. None of these things can get any better if nobody’s talking. To me, that’s the biggest thing. People don’t talk. People are afraid to be wrong. People are afraid to be confronted with something that feels uncomfortable. They are afraid to realize that thoughts or feelings or actions that they’ve had are problematic and so, they just shy away from it because it’s more comfortable to deny than to acknowledge.

Tara Newman: It really is. This is why I want to appreciate you for a second because you did some thing other day and it blew my fucking mind. You owned your privilege.

Erica Courdae: Oh yeah.

Tara Newman: You, a woman of color. In The BRAVE Society, we were having a conversation and you completely owned your privilege and I was like, “Oh my gosh.” It was so powerful to see you model that and give us permission to then go look at our privilege and to model it and you asked great questions around that. You had some good prompts on Instagram. If you’re interesting in this conversation, you should go follow Erica on Instagram @erica_Courdae and we’ll put it in the show notes. She does, she has very thought provoking questions that make your mind and your soul ache a little bit. You went in there and you were like, here’s my privilege.

Erica Courdae: Oh yeah. Because, I didn’t grow up financially disadvantaged. I did not grow up food insecure. My father was not incarcerated. My mother was present. I could receive medical care if I was ill. I had access to food, water, shelter. I had people around me that I knew that loved me. I had friends. I had access to education consistently. I had so many things that I didn’t have to worry about. Even now, and one of the things that I acknowledge was that, I work for myself, which means that, this time of year, which every parent knows, there are 50 11 things going on that you have to go do for these children. When you are doing all the graduations and the field days and the picnics and the ceremonies and the this, that and the other, these things happen during the day. I didn’t have to be concerned about, am I going to be broke if I go do this?

Am I going to miss a crucial day to pay something? Am I going to lose my job because my boss is like, “You can’t call off again?” That’s a privilege for me because I can show up and be present for my children, and yet, not have to worry about being absent in my business. I have an assistant that helps to keep things going. I’m on the lighter end of the spectrum for a black person in that, I’m not as dark skinned, being that colorism is a thing. White skin privilege is a thing. If I went through, there’s a laundry list of things. For me to just simply know that the way that I moved through my life, on a day-to-day basis, has privilege wound through it in ways, I think it’s important to utilize that, for me to have important conversations and dialogue. Hence the types of conversations that I do have in BRAVE. With that being said, part of the reason that I have it on the flip side, is because I know how I feel if a police officer pulls up behind me. I know how I felt when my son, who is now seven, who was four at the time, sat down for me to tie his shoes on the steps and said, “Mommy, police are bad.” He was four.

I know what it looks like to have these concerns that the people that are around me, that I consider very dear to me, don’t have to worry about those things.

Tara Newman: I don’t have to worry about somebody touching my hair.

Erica Courdae: No. People will just be like, oh, this is great. I don’t know where their hands have been. Why don’t I have autonomy over my body? Why do you decide that I am here for you to just have at it because you wanted to know? I think it’s important to be able to acknowledge what my privilege is and how I choose to use that but also acknowledge where I had the disadvantages around things that I have no choice because I’m a black woman in America. I’m a black woman period.

Tara Newman: Yeah, you are.

Erica Courdae: Period. Being able to acknowledge those things. Being able to have conversations to see where things are similar, then where they’re different. That’s where the change can begin because now you’re acknowledging, okay, now I know more about you. You know more about me and we’re talking. What can we do with that? What can we do with that? I think it’s important to be able to say, this is my privilege. This is what I have that I take for granted. How can I use this for good?

Tara Newman: Yeah. Let’s take a couple minutes and I would just like to, with you, just spitball just where some people can start. Some things, maybe some resources that you can think of. I can think of some that I would love to share. If you’re interested in exploring your thoughts, beliefs, programming.

Erica Courdae: Programming’s a really good word.

Tara Newman: Programming around diversity, racism, inclusion, equity, equality. Whatever you want to call it, your biases. We all have them. We’re going to give you some practical things that you can do and I’m going to ask that you just take one and go and implement it. What do you got for us Erica?

Erica Courdae: Well, I would be remiss if I did not mention myself.

Tara Newman: 100%.

Erica Courdae: Part of what I do is, I actually, I do one on one calls. What you and I did was a diversity deep dive. I also have a called called ask all the things.

Tara Newman: That is such a great call and such a great opportunity for people who, if they’re unsure, if they don’t know any of this means, if they’re feeling, whatever they’re in their feels about it, this is such a great opportunity to get some coaching and some support around it.

Erica Courdae: That’s exactly it. For me, I think it’s easier to just say, go Google but you can number one, get into the dark recesses of Google and that can be dangerous on its own. I think it’s good to be able to Google things that you simply want a definition for but the context is the difference. When you want to be able to figure out the why around things and you’re trying to get clarity, you want to be very careful with where you’re getting your information from. Being able to actually have a conversation with someone means that you’re not typing out words because text has no context and that can be scary. When you hop on a call with me, gives you that space to where you can either say, this is what I’m trying to do and I want to get some clarity to make sure that my intention is actually going to meet with the actions that I take. The ask all the things really lets you say, I don’t know and I am afraid to go into some of these spaces online and be skewered. I am afraid to be ostracized when I simply want to know.

Tara Newman: I’m afraid to have a conversation with a family member or at the dinner table.

Erica Courdae: Correct.

Tara Newman: Any of those things.

Erica Courdae: You’re able to ask questions and to be able to get clarity in a place that is safe but you are also challenged to be BRAVE and to step up.

Tara Newman: I do want to say though, you should Google some things.

Erica Courdae: Oh yeah.

Tara Newman: Here are the things that I initially googled when I was starting this journey. I googled white fragility. There is a book on it.

Erica Courdae: Great book on, yes. Yes.

Tara Newman: There’s a book by the same title. It’s White Fragility is the name of it.

Erica Courdae: Correct.

Tara Newman: Okay. You could check that book out. You could google the term. Tone policing. That is another term that I would love everybody to go and google and understand. What were some of the other ones that I was googling at the time?

Erica Courdae: I think allyship is a good one too.

Tara Newman: Allyship, centering.

Erica Courdae: Yes.

Tara Newman: Centering.

Erica Courdae: I guess, just maybe getting some context around white privilege. Just privilege in general but white privilege.

Tara Newman: Yes. The resource that I refer everybody to for a definition and a thorough explanation of white privilege because, the second you bring up white privilege, every white person gets their panties in a twist. The person who does this, if you google Brene Brown Facebook, white privilege, you will get a 30-minute lecture from Brene Brown, on her page, that she did around the time that the Charlottesville incident occurred, a year ago, two years ago?

Erica Courdae: Think it was two. Think.

Tara Newman: Right. She talks about, as a sociology professor, and a woman who has taught lots of classes on privilege and racism and all the things, she gives you a college level lecture on white privilege and it’s fantastic. We will even link to it in the show notes. That is one place that you can go as well, as a resource to get some education.

Erica Courdae: I think appropriation is always-

Tara Newman: Oh yeah. Cultural appropriation.

Erica Courdae: Yes. I actually challenge anybody that considers themselves a feminist, specifically white women, please look up the history of feminism because it is not what you think it is.

Tara Newman: It’s not.

Erica Courdae: I think that it can be very dangerous to throw this word around and to not understand the undertones of it and how it can be very damaging to just assume that it is what you would think it is, but it’s really not.

Tara Newman: Yes. If you are googling the history of feminism, you can also google the term intersectional feminism.

Erica Courdae: Correct.

Tara Newman: I think that would be a great term to check out as well. Any other resources that you could think of right now?

Erica Courdae: I actually had a post, I re-posted it today on my Facebook page. I’ll send you the link and you can put it in there as well. It was actually a pretty good one. It gave 23 gender terms that some people-

Tara Newman: Oh yeah. At the time we’re recording this, it’s pride month. Happy pride month and anniversary of stone wall. Was that the?

Erica Courdae: Yeah. There’s a lot of terms that everybody doesn’t know and I think there’s a lot of fear around, am I saying it right? That’s where imperfect allyship really comes up. There’s an Instagram profile. I think his name is Jeffery Marsh. I loved when he showed up and he was like, non binary people need you to show up as imperfect allies. I loved to hear him. He’s very vocal about it. He’s accurate in that, there’s no marginalized group that needs you to wait until it’s comfortable because it’s not comfortable for us now. We need you to get on that train because it is very different when it comes from someone else and then we can collectively make the voice louder. That’s a good one to be in to just get your knowledge up around what terms to use or, what does it mean when someone says they’re non binary? What’s a pronoun? I think that’s one people are like, what is this I keep seeing on people’s profiles pop up? That way, when you see these things on social media posts or just online articles, you have clarity to know what it is and you’re not like, this is too much work. I don’t know and you just opt out.

Tara Newman: Erica, thank you.

Erica Courdae: You’re welcome.

Tara Newman: I appreciate you.

Erica Courdae: I love that you talk about it and you talk about it openly. I appreciate you and have immense gratitude for that.

Tara Newman: I’m doing my work.

Erica Courdae: That’s the best I can ever ask for.

Tara Newman: I’m doing it imperfectly. I will also add that if you are a woman business owner, a woman leader and this is a conversation that you want to have in a BRAVE space, then you can definitely come check out The BRAVE Society and come hang out with Erica and I and have more of these conversations as well as other conversations. Thank you for coming by.

Erica Courdae: Thank you Tara.


Now, if this conversation was interesting to you and felt unique and a little different, I want you to do me a favor. I want you to take me up on my invitation to join The BRAVE Society. If you’re a female small business owner, this is likely your community. If you’re resonated with this podcast and the things we’re talking about over here because they are very much the essence of how we talk about things in The BRAVE Society. The BRAVE Society was founded on three basic principles. One, community. How can we come together and become a marketplace of business owners where we can do business together, where we can open doors for each other, where we can collaborate with like minded, credible business owners. Two, nobody should ever short change their leadership development. I see too many times women spread thin, making investments in their businesses as they grow and short changing their leadership development.

I’m here to sold that problem. You can make the investments that you need to make and say you’re marketing or your branding or your website and develop yourself as a leader. The third thing that we come together for is to really stand at the pinnacle of our leadership, which John Maxwell talks a lot about in his work. He says that we’re at the pinnacle of our leadership when we are a leader who develops leaders who develops leaders. What I ask the women of The BRAVE Society to do is to take what they learn in The BRAVE Society and bring it into the world, into their communities. Into their families. To their clients and their customers and to really continue to develop more leaders on this planet. If this sounds interesting to you, I want you to go over to the show notes and click on the link or you can come find me on Instagram @thetaranewman, and ask me any questions you need to about joining The BRAVE Society.

If you’ve found this podcast valuable, help us develop more bold leaders in the world by sharing this episode with your friends, colleagues and other bold leaders. Also, if you haven’t done so already, please leave a review. I consider reviews like podcast currency and it’s the one thing you can do to help us out here at the Bold Leadership Revolution HQ. We would be so grateful for it. Special thanks goes to Stacey Harris from Uncommonly More, who is the producer and editor of this podcast. Go check them out for all your digital marketing and content creation needs.

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