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Lori Castillo Martinez of Salesforce Future of Work is Possibility to Integrate DEI Into Core of the business enterprise

In a few days Salesforces big industry event, Dreamforce, is back full force for the very first time because the pandemic. Its the 20th anniversary of the initial Dreamforce, and theyre expecting about 150,000 folks to descend on SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA, that is not that remote from where it left off in 2019.

WHEN I prepare yourself to leave west for Dreamforce, Not long ago i had the chance to consult with Salesforces Chief Equality Officer Lori Castillo-Martinez. Salesforce is a leader in your community of diversity, equality and inclusion (DEI), taking on several initiatives sparked by the George Floyd murder. In the last 2 yrs, I spoke with then-Salesforce Chief Procurement Officer Craig Cuffie on several occasions (in 2020 and 2021) to go over the companys efforts to improve the participation of underrepresented minorities in employment, leadership, supplier participation and capital raising investment. And Lori joined me to go over the companys continuing efforts of this type, also to share why she feels the continuing future of work isn’t just being transformed by virtual technologies, but additionally by integrating DEI deeper in to the core of the way the business operates and how it measures success.

Below can be an edited transcript from the part of our conversation. Go through the embedded SoundCloud player to listen to the entire conversation.

Brent Leary: I saw a recently available video of you talking about diversity, equality and inclusion (DEI) to be an important element of the continuing future of work. I hadnt heard anyone tie those two together like this before.

Lori Castillo Martinez: Our vision is usually to be probably the most inclusive company, you ‘must’ have the big audacious goal to getting there. You talked a bit about this earlier of its so difficult and it feels as though companies do something forward and steps back. But I believe you cant lose sight of where youre going. And what we make an effort to do is continue steadily to have that concentrate on where were going.

Future of Work is DEI along with WFH

We need to evolve where were choosing where in fact the future of work is certainly going. And the only path to really do this is to make certain that as youre breaking/redesigning your processes, youre considering what inclusion appears like later on versus what inclusion could have looked like at work.

You need to put equality at the guts. And so that is a thing that we consider from hiring to experience. We need to consider what that means inside our hiring process? If youre likely to have people remote at work, how do we stay connected from everywhere which were working in order that we can achieve success from anywhere where were going?

Whenever we consider that in true practical reality, its how can you consider those connections? How can you ensure that you keep your culture alive? What exactly are those strategies? And I believe for all of us, it starts with this particular notion of equality at the guts. However the question I get from a lot of people is, okay, that sounds well and good, but what can you actually mean?

For me personally, it truly is about hiring plus experience. Its in what are the techniques we attract visitors to come and work inside our company? Just how do we make certain what we say is what we do? And from an event perspective, you want to ensure that its not only about getting you in the entranceway, but we wish one to stay.

You want to be sure that we have been determining through our data where are those barriers? Just how do we consider barriers to entry from an attraction perspective? Do you know the challenges? My gosh, the society is overwhelming. I cant even say months. It feels as though now its gone to years. Just how do we be sure that were considering whats happening outside?

Just how do we prepare our managers to be empathetic and supportive? Just how do we make certain were being thoughtful about opportunities? Just how do we ensure that managers have these kinds of new skills and competencies were asking them to possess to manage in different ways? And then just how do we ensure that were continuing to pay attention deeply to your employees?

Because I could sit over within my virtual square the whole day guessing what folks want, but I absolutely need to ask the questions and I absolutely need to pay attention. Therefore thats only a constant mechanism of, you understand, training ourselves to achieve that, deep listening and ensuring we’ve those mechanisms to keep to create it into the way were redesigning our work.

Also it may be from just how do we connect inside our intentional in the offices to how can you make certain youre still being inclusive to individuals who may be on a zoom call when maybe two thirds come in an office and a different one third are spread around the world at different time zones. So all those things together will be the inputs, I’d say, to making certain were considering equality and inclusion as were taking into consideration the future of work.

The continuing future of Work and Growing Black and Brown Opportunities in Tech

Brent Leary: How are you currently seeing the near future work impacting ground floor opportunities in addition to leadership opportunities? Those sort of two tracks?

Lori Castillo Martinez: I believe a few of it, again, comes home to see and being intentional about careers. After some duration ago, we launched an application called The Warm Line. Very specifically centered on our black, Latinx, indigenous, multi race, and our LGBTQ+ communities, including women of most races. its an advocacy and belonging program, also it really gave us some insights in what the barriers were. Why are folks having challenges and just why are they leaving your company? Really ensuring youre attending to and hearing that’s super important. And I’ll tell you, among the number 1 items that arises is career.

Sponsors and Mentors

Therefore some of it really is how do you navigate? How do you find sponsors? Theres an improvement between a mentor thats helping me figure a couple of things out and a sponsor. Whos that? See your face thats discussing me when Im not in the area, the individual whos seeking me out for all those opportunities. So when we began to hear a few of that feedback, section of what were doing is determining how can you get really intentional about those forms of programs?

How can you teach leaders how exactly to be considered a sponsor? How can you teach employees how exactly to have that conversation, also to have clarity in what they need their career to be? Because I believe what weve realized is that theres accountability on both sides.

I was speaking with a group today that has been sharing with me, Lori, Personally i think as an imposter sometimes that age-old imposter syndrome. Im uncertain if Im qualified. THEREFORE I didnt make an application for the work. Were saying you requested that job. Dont wait till youre 100%. Therefore some of it really is accumulating that confidence, locking arms of individuals, really being the sponsors which are encouraging people and being their champions, helping them prepare on the way, too, so they are best prepared for all those opportunities.

Giving Leaders the various tools to Lead in DEI

Lori Castillo Martinez: On the lighter side, how can you really work together with your leaders and say, can be your network diverse both internally and externally? Most of us have our very own personal lived experiences. Most of us arrive with the network that weve naturally grown, as you alluded to earlier, in tech. Our networks may or may possibly not be that diverse.

Just how do we get really intentional about saying, how do you meet people externally in order that when those roles appear, I understand who those big names in the market are? And internally, just how do we make certain were considering from succession likely to proportional slates? And thats a thing that we just started talking a whole lot about.

Many people was previously like, well have one woman or one individual of color. That doesnt work. We realize already through so many reports that its actually about being proportional, this means about being intentional in your sourcing so you have talent pools which are really diverse. When those leaders have these jobs open, what recruiting teams can perform is become a lot more sophisticated. And our recruiting team, best on the market, they really experienced a complete transformation of 22 different initiatives to ensure we were considering careers both externally and internally; in order that were really considering that talent on demand when our leaders will be ready to hire. I’d say thats section of the piece that people think about when it comes to careers.

Both sides have to be intentional

Lori Castillo Martinez: Another piece I’d say may also be people are looking forward to some special day like this will probably be how people progress in the business. And what I tell all the lovingly known as the mushy middle (those hiring managers, the managers, senior managers, directors, senior directors) each day, is each of you have the energy to make sure that your teams tend to be more diverse. Therefore shop around your team. In the event that you dont have widespread representation, venture out and obtain it. In the event that you dont understand how to take action, ask the resources inside your organization to assist you. I guarantee you can find someone in your company that knows where this talent is. Go think it is and get linked to it because its not likely to be me in my own position.

Brent, thats actually likely to change it out. Its literally every potential employer atlanta divorce attorneys organization by them creating a different choice, both in hiring and in promotion. Thats actually likely to change the makeup of our organizations.

Not following leader

Brent Leary: You guys have already been achieving this stuff for a long time and revenue continues to be increasing and growing. The business enterprise does well as youve integrated this in. Will there be a correlation there? Can you feel like the business enterprise is in an improved position due to the items that youve done, even considering it through the original lens of financials? Since it just feels as though right from the start companies have viewed DEI as more of a price instead of a central little bit of the business enterprise.

Nevertheless, you guys did that and you also have benefited. Also it just feels as though, well, in the event that you guys are carrying it out and youve been wildly successful, why do the questions remain?

Lori Castillo Martinez: Its an excellent question. Lots of people come to work with Salesforce due to our values; equality, sustainability or innovation or customer success. And our number 1 value is trust. When we speak to why do people come work with us, plenty of for the reason that of our values.

I believe its that balance of the way you integrate it in to the business. It shouldnt be separate everything you do, to your exact point. Its surely got to be about how exactly you do everything you do. I was talking to somebody recently plus they said, Oh, my goodness. But dont you concentrate on your inclusive language trainings and dont you focus in.

Aligning DEI with business results

I tell them yes, but I focus on the business enterprise, like where do we align with this business results? We realize our customers are searching for a far more diverse sales organization, therefore we begin to track our representation of our account executives on a weekly basis. Not merely do our sales leaders report out their numbers, they report out their representation because we achieve this much hiring.

That is an opportunity to allow them to share that, not merely do we look at, again, our business results, but we also look at our representation. And the ones are section of our corporate goals. Therefore once you line it up hand and hand, youre setting that tone at the very top that its in the same way important.

Not just one persons issue to solve

Lori Castillo Martinez: I believe thats where it starts. And its actually the less sexy work thats rolling up your sleeves, one manager at the same time, one employee at the same time, for the reason that mushy middle. That’s where one can do the very best work. Its not about whats that one thing that fixed it. Its actually the multitude of items that get together. And I believe you need to really push yourself on those small wins because those small wins. It starts to create your momentum. And thats what I am hoping others will learn and eliminate, because thats really whats benefited our business.

Considering it, its not just one persons issue to resolve. Its every one of us each day creating a conscious decision and an intentional decision to just how we hire and just how our employees experience our company. Those will be the two most effective items that people can perform. Also to your point, those will be the techniques you begin to add value to your company. Its much harder to be inclusive once you dont have representation. If you have representation people can study from each other and become interested in those lived experiences.

Thats actually the energy of the work. Thats when you begin to see those amazing business results because youre now considering solving your visitors issues through the lens of several lived experiences. Not just one myopic thought process concerning the world and thats the energy of it, to be honest.


That is section of the One-on-One Interview series with thought leaders. The transcript has been edited for publication. Whether it’s an audio or video interview, go through the embedded player above, or subscribe via iTunes or via Stitcher.

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