Standing with the Black Community in the Fight to End Racial Injustice
We are saddened, troubled, and frustrated by the injustice, senseless deaths, and violence that recently occurred and what this means for the Black community and our nation. Our hearts go out to Ahmaud Arbery’s, Breonna Taylor’s, and George Floyd’s family, loved ones, and community for their profound losses. It’s deeply saddening to be reminded that these were not rare acts of violence, but rather a day-to-day reality for so many Black Americans. Against this background of injustice, we firmly stand in solidarity with our Black employees, coaches, customers, members, and community.
This moment has served as a stark reminder of the work that remains to be done in acknowledging and overcoming racism and its effects on our society. As a company we have embraced ethnic diversity as a key component of who we are. Our mission is rooted in the belief that diversity, inclusion, and belonging are fundamental to creating the workplaces and society to which we aspire. Because of this, we cannot be content in our pursuits so long as others are unjustly excluded from life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness based on the color of their skin.
We believe that change starts on the inside. Our inner work fuels and accelerates our actions. Starting with empathy for the experience of others, desire for knowledge and truth, and clarity around our values and beliefs. Part of the inner work each of us can do is to be radically honest and acknowledge that we can do better.
As a company, we are committed to doing better by channeling our ideas, creativity, and resources into effective and lasting change. Our approach is to listen first, speak thoughtfully and authentically, and then proceed with action that is aligned with our mission and values. Here is an initial list of actions we plan to take:
- Direct Donations to Organizations Fighting Racial Injustice—We are making direct financial donations to organizations that are on the frontlines of addressing racism, unequal treatment, and community building. BetterUp will match employee donations to 501(c)(3) organizations that advance racial and social equity up to $50,000.
- Increasing Diversity in the Coaching Industry—We will be investing in increasing diversity in the coaching industry in a historically unprecedented way. In the coming days, we will provide details on a new coach scholarship program with an initial $50,000 investment, aimed at increasing the number of certified Black coaches--who have historically been underrepresented--in the professional coaching sector.
- Providing Free Resources For All—We’ve created and opened up expert resources to any professional who would like to learn more about inclusion in the workplace. These PhD-designed toolkits provide actionable ideas on how to effectively serve as an ally to underrepresented groups, strategies to combat unconscious bias, and how to create a safe, inclusive environment for everyone on your team.
- Democratizing Access to Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging Coaching—We are bolstering our Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging product offerings so that professionals from all walks of life can be better equipped to have transformational conversations on race in the workplace. We are making a new Specialist Coach vertical freely available to our customers that addresses diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging in the workplace via expert-facilitated, safe, confidential one-on-one coaching conversations.
- Empowering Our Partners to Advance Diversity & Inclusion—We are making our bench of expert advisors freely available to partners to help them formulate, refine, or sharpen their diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies. This also entails adding new programming such as practices from research-based The Inner Work of Racial Justice.
- Leading by Example—It’s critically important that we continue to invest in and improve diversity, inclusion, and belonging at BetterUp. We are committing additional budget and executive time to advance our Belonging @ BetterUp initiatives. The additional investment will enable us to accelerate talent initiatives including more proactive recruitment from diverse backgrounds, measuring diversity metrics at each step of the hiring process, tracking the diversity of our teams at the department level, and company-wide training to reduce unconscious bias and increase the skill sets to reinforce a culture of inclusivity, among other best practices.
Real change takes inner resolution, firm commitment, and hard work. It also takes all of us working together. At BetterUp, we’re just getting started. To our Black BetterUppers, coaches, members, and partners, we stand with you in the fight to end racial injustice.