How to Advocate for Yourself at Work with DEI Expert, Netta Jenkins

Ep: 143

Most people, particularly women and women of color, simply aren’t comfortable advocating for themselves at work.

Maybe it’s because of how you were raised, or perhaps it’s generational. Or maybe you just don’t want to rock the boat. So, you wait…. hoping that one day, you’ll be recognized and get that raise or be given that promotion.

The question is why? Why don’t we know our own self worth enough to use it to our advantage as a tool for change?

The answer is simple: It’s because you just haven’t had the right combination of tools and role-models showing you that the change you seek really is possible.

Today, Blake welcomes Netta Jenkins, a leading voice in the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion field whose soaring audience engagement was doubtless a key factor in Forbes naming her as one of the top 7 anti-racism consultants in the world. Netta was featured in CIO Views publication as “The Top 10 Most Influential Black Women in Business to Follow in 2021”.  An acclaimed author with a deep background in communications, leadership, and behavioral psychology, Netta has been advising corporations and audiences of all kinds for more than 15 years on the most effective strategies to address systemic racism, its traumatic impact, and the path to social justice.

In this episode, you’ll hear how Netta was encouraged from a young age to advocate for herself, despite circumstances that could have easily had the opposite effect. She shares how that strength helped catapult her to success, and how she helps others cultivate a strong, unbreakable sense of self-worth that gives them the courage to confidently change their circumstances.

What You’ll Learn:

  • How Netta developed her strong sense of power from an early age (4:10)
  • The most important element of self-advocacy (10:21)
  • The 3 steps you can take towards a better career path (10:08)
  • Moving forward through the scars of negative experiences in the workplace (20:37)
  • An acronym to help organizations address their root issues (26:32)
  • Key questions to ask during the interview process to know whether this a company you’ll be able to grow with (34:07)

Favorite Quotes:

  1. My mother said something so pivotal, she said, “Netta I didn’t bring you in this world to cry about things. I brought you in this world to create change”. -Netta
  2. Oftentimes, we don’t realize the importance of our words. But we also don’t realize the importance of our belief systems and how those belief systems then create the outcomes of our lives. -Blake
  3. What I love about the idea of self-advocacy is it’s about how can I create that change? How do I be the one to move that instead of expecting somebody else to fix it. Instead of it being external, it now becomes internal. And so I can do something about it, I can be that person that creates the change.  -Blake
  4. If a patient went to their physician and asked them to write a prescription without first understanding the patient’s underlying health condition, that would be a problem, right? So organizations must resist that impulse to just seek immediate relief for their symptoms, and instead focus on the core disease of what’s happening. -Netta
  5. When we understand who we are and our perspective, we can better understand other people and their perspective. And we can have empathy and we can have real conversations that bring teams together, change organizations, and create the result we actually want to create. -Blake
  6. Organizations are going to see if they can’t get it together, and start to really solve for these disparities, these systemic gaps within their organizations, they won’t have an organization. -Netta

Connect with Netta Jenkins:

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