Digital Diversity Days at Sparkbox • Day 1 Workshop
Sparkbox, 123 Webster St., Dayton, OH 45402 (map)

The Better Allies™ Approach Workshop with Karen Catlin

Wednesday, November 13, 2019
10:00 AM–4:00 PM

Do you have goals to diversify your workforce? Does your organization face challenges in hiring technical talent, given the record low unemployment across the U.S. and especially in tech? If so, you may need to cast a wider net during the hiring process and evaluate candidates differently, all without lowering the bar.

In this workshop, Silicon Valley veteran Karen Catlin covers key points from her book, Better Allies: Everyday Actions to Create Inclusive, Engaging Workplaces. Learn steps you can take to be more inclusive during the hiring process AND how to retain the talent you’ve worked so hard to find.

Topics covered

  • Attracting job candidates from underrepresented groups

  • Being inclusive during the interview process

  • Setting up new hires for success

  • Amplifying and advocating in meetings

  • Giving effective and equitable feedback

  • Using inclusive language

  • Disrupting office housework

  • AMA on being a better ally for people from underrepresented groups

Bring a laptop, tablet or phone. You’ll use it to review your organization’s career site, job descriptions and more, as part of exercises to identify improvements to attract more candidates from underrepresented groups.

There is no cost to attend this event, but contributions to the Bureau DE&I (Diversity, Equity & Inclusion) Scholarship fund are appreciated.


Meet Karen Catlin

After spending 25 years building software products and serving as a vice president of engineering at Adobe, Karen Catlin witnessed a sharp decline in the number of women working in tech. Frustrated but galvanized, she knew it was time to switch gears.

Today, Karen is a leadership coach, keynote speaker and author. She's a highly sought-after and engaging presenter who has delivered talks at more than a hundred events. In addition to speaking herself, Karen is determined to bring more diversity to speaker lineups at tech industry events. To support this goal, she coauthored Present! A Techie's Guide to Public Speaking.

In 2014, Karen started the Twitter handle @betterallies to share simple, actionable steps that anyone can take to make their workplace more inclusive. That Twitter handle became the inspiration for her second book, Better Allies: Everyday Actions to Create Inclusive, Engaging Workplaces.

“Some people have it harder than you at work. This is just true. Get over it. And, yes, there are many permutations of this dynamic involving class, color, race, sexual orientation and a few thousand other ways people are different from each other. We tend to not notice it, or not do anything about it, at least partly because we’re not sure what to do. Fortunately, we now have Better Allies. It’s incredibly complete and packed with practical advice to help you start to make a difference in your organization.”

— Joe Dunn, Executive Coach and Radical Candor Guru

“We were very fortunate to have Karen from Better Allies join our Diversity and Inclusion in Open Communities Call. Her advice, and ‘everyday actions to be a better ally’ inspired participants, and provided new ideas and insights to those of us working to build more inclusive projects. I am grateful for her work in this space, and no doubt, will continue to leverage her work, and resources in our own.”

Emma Irwin, Community Development Mozilla

“By including and advocating for people of all genders, cultures and lifestyles, and ensuring they are reflected in all levels of the company from the board room to the mail room, businesses will develop a practice of empathy and understanding which will translate into more meaningful connections, thus products and services people believe in. Better Allies paves a road to this success. ”

— Steve Johnson, Vice President of Experience Design and Innovation, Netflix

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