5 Voices about the Way of Being

Last week, I wrote about how now is a time to speak up and step up. I also believe this is a time to listen more than talk, and to diversify the voices we are listening to so we can broaden our understanding of the world and the issues others are facing at this pivotal moment in history.

In that spirit, I offer you five voices whose messages about life, death, leadership, racial justice, and being an ally/accomplice I listen to. I know each of these individuals personally, and I have been the beneficiary of their insight. wisdom, and, in several cases, coaching. I am a better person and a better ally because of each of them. I strongly encourage you to follow them, subscribe to their newsletters/blogs, visit their websites, watch their videos, and listen to and learn from their voices.

Alua Arthur

Who is Alua? Alua is a death doula, lawyer, ordained minister, and adjunct professor. She is the founder of Going with Grace, an end of life planning and bereavement support organization. Alua is a powerhouse presenter and passionate advocate for coming to terms with our mortality so when the time comes we can die peacefully.

Why should you listen to Alua? In Alua’s short video blogs she asks us to give “one minute of our life to think about the end of it.” She confronts deep issues many of us have never considered, or actively ignore, around our mortality, and she does so with candor, compassion, and humor. If the thought of dying makes you uncomfortable, check Alua out. She just might shift your viewpoint.

Liza Smalling

Who is Liza? Liza (pronounced “Lisa” but spelled with a “z”) is an experienced performance improvement and operations leader who recently turned her talents to coaching. She is that rare kind of leader who balances data and analytics focus with people focus. Through this Covid-19 pandemic, the world leaders touted for their management of the crisis like Angela Merkel, Jacinda Ardern, and Tsai Ing-wen, are all women who bring Liza’s unique duality to their leadership.

Why should you listen to Liza? First, you should check out Liza’s Soft Skills series of LinkedIn posts for valuable insight into what these critical skills are really about and how to develop them. I have been in the learning and development world for more than 20 years, and I still learn a lot about skills I thought I’d mastered when I read Liza’s perspective. Second, you should check Liza out on Facebook (and try to friend her if you can!.) Her “Inside Job” posts about her experience as a black women in America are informative, thought provoking, and raw. If you want to broaden your world view, seriously check her out!

Magalie Rene

Who is Magalie? Magalie Rene is a Compassionate Leadership expert, business strategist, coach, bestselling author, and keynote speaker who focuses on helping people and organizations live their vision and values. Her mission is to help everyone “Find Your Shine,” and Magalie role models what that looks like through her inspiring and compassionate communication and coaching. You can access her website here: https://magalierene.com/

Why should you listen to Magalie? Magalie is all about coaching people to consciously design their businesses, their lives, and even their physical space. Her blogs and newsletter are like getting a pep talk from your bestie who is both your biggest fan and actually knowledgeable about the issues you are facing. If you want some practical and actionable shine in your life, connect with Magalie.

Torrian Scott

Who is Torrian? Torrian is a coach, consultant, and author of “Running After Destiny.” He was my executive coach when I was a FUSE Corp fellow, and helped me transform my relationship with myself as a leader during an incredibly challenging moment in my career. (This will be a topic of a future #WOBWednesday blog, so come back to learn more!)

Why should you listen to Torrian? Torrian is the founder of Masters in the Marketplace, which is a consulting and coaching company dedicated to adding value in leadership. Like me, Torrian believes that leadership is fundamentally about who you BE and not just what you DO. Follow him for his insights into how to cultivate leadership excellence within yourself.

And last but not least…

Willie L. Jackson, II

Who is Willie? Willie is a keynote speaker, consultant, facilitator and, as he puts it “professional black person.” I met Willie when he gave the keynote at a diversity and inclusion summit I attended in December 2019. I was inspired by Willie’s brutally honest and yet hilarious talk about going from being an ally to an accomplice in the fight for racial justice in the workplace. Willie is that rare speaker who can confront sensitive issues in a way that invites everyone into the conversation and the solution. His website is: https://williejackson.com/

Why should you listen to Willie? If you care about diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) you need to follow Willie! Watch his videos. Listen to him talk about leveling up as an ally. Take action on his recommendations. I have followed tips from his “Ally Skills Training,” and it has helped me advance the DEI conversation in my organization. Thank you, Willie. (See his LinkedIn post here: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/why-does-ally-skills-training-work-willie-jackson/)

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