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Scott Ballina: Diversity and Inclusion in Practice

In this episode of OutBüro Voices featuring LGBTQ professionals, entrepreneurs, and community leaders from around the world, host Dennis Velco chats with Scott Ballina, Senior Director, Diversity, Belonging & Giving for a global technology company.

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Scott learned the value of diversity while serving in the US Navy as an officer leading a diverse group of sailors from all walks of life. It was also in this role where he experienced living double life hiding his sexual orientation through avoidance, double-speak, and living if needed to keep his identity a secret. While working as a technology consultant at Deloitte, Scott started working on diversity and inclusion in a part-time capacity. His passion for the work and its impact grew and he moved into the role full-time as soon as he was able.

The role of diversity and inclusion can be challenging since it is dealing with all employees who have their conscience and unconscious biases. Scott shares how in his current company they wanted to provide all employees the ability to self-identify their sexual orientation and gender identity. He explains that he had to partner closely with the legal team to assess each country’s laws where they operate. That process took just over a year to complete. Having this data will allow him an analyze promotions, attrition, how engaged the employees are and how their sexual orientation and gender identity may be impacting their experience and allow the company to have metrics around their efforts to improve the culture.

Towards improving the culture, Scott and the company worked on having out gay employees who are in leadership positions. When employees see persons in leadership who they identify with it provides strength to all employees. Studies have demonstrated that when there is more diversity in leadership, it fosters a culture of support for all.

Scott offers advice for organizations starting on their path to creating an inclusive work culture including reaching out to him. To connect with Scott find him on OutBüro here.
https://outburo.com/profile/sballina/

Join me and Bruce on OutBüro, the LGBTQ professional and entrepreneur online community network for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, allies and our employers who support LGBTQ welcoming workplace equality focused benefits, policies, and business practices. https://www.OutBuro.com

Would you like to be featured like this? Contact the host Dennis Velco. https://outburo.com/profile/dennisvelco/

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Queer Staff Network Berlin with Dr. Markus Loew

In this episode, host Dennis Velco, chats with Dr. Markus Loew about the Queer Staff Network of Berlin. Dr. Loew describes the group as an LGBTQ professional network of networks. It is a coming together of all the LGBTQ employee resource groups (ERGs) from all corporate employers with offices operating in Berlin. They have 3-4 meeting a year in where they discuss issues, strategies, opportunities, collaborate and share to advance lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer equality, workplaces belonging, career advancement, and how to assist their employers to be a better citizen in the LGBTQ community at large. Join the Queer Staff Network of Berlin group on OutBüro: https://www.outburo.com/community/groups/queer-staff-network-berlin/

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We’d love your text comments at the bottom of each show episode page asking questions of me, our guests, and interacting with other commenters.

We also have the feature where you may “call-in” and leave a recorded message. Your recorded message may be used in future episodes and requires a simple registration on the podcast platform

  • 01:00 Introduction of Queer Staff Network of Berlin
  • 05:00 Discusses the new direction to expand to LGBTQ entrepreneurs
  • 06:30 Advocating Corporate Supplier Diversity a mutual benefit
  • 13:00 Leveraging www.OutBuro.com for Employer ERGs through online groups
  • 14:20 Questions for companies – are you maximizing the opportunities?
  • 18:00 A company thought they were in the LGBTQ consumer market, yet was not positioned well
  • 19:00 Inclusion and diversity with authenticity can lead to opportunity
  • 24:15 Pinkwashing – Bad for corporate image and business – be authentic – example

Connect with Dr. Markus Loew on OutBüro: https://www.outburo.com/profile/marku…

Currently, Germany has one LGBTQ chamber of commerce located in Köln (Cologne). The Queer Staff Network of Berlin is bridging the lack of a formal LGBTQBerlin Chamber of Commerce to invite local and regional small and medium LGBTQ entrepreneurs to join the group. They are mentoring the business owners on how to do business with the large corporations, what products and services are needed and how the LGBTQ owned businesses can participate in the procurement process and hopefully win the contracts. On the inside, the corporate members of the Queer Staff Network of Berlin are raising awareness of the need and value of supplier diversity. They are internal champions for the small and medium LGBTQ owned businesses. It is a “Hey Dir of Procurement, we use/need X, and here’s an LGBTQ owned business that can supply that for us”. This level of collaboration, commitment, mentorship, and advocacy is a bright shining example of DOING IT RIGHT! APPLAUSE!

Join Markus on OutBüro, the LGBTQ professional and entrepreneur online community network for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, allies and our employers who support LGBTQ welcoming workplace equality focused benefits, policies, and business practices. https://www.OutBuro.com

Would you like to be featured like this? Contact the host Dennis Velco. https://www.outburo.com/profile/denni…