Welcome to Crazy and the King!!
July 14, 2022

The CATK Interview: Ray Arata

The CATK Interview: Ray Arata

We Need Better Men. Torin and Julie Welcome Author, Founder, Coach and Ally Ray Arata.


We Need Better Men. Torin and Julie Welcome Author, Founder, Coach and Ally Ray Arata.

Ray Arata is a thought leader, sought-after speaker, and author who teaches important techniques that allow individuals and organizations to be more heart-centered, inclusive and effective.

Ray Arata is the author of two books, Wake Up Man Up, Step Up: Transforming Your Wake Up Call to Emotional Health and Happiness and Showing Up: How Men Can Become Effective Allies in the Workplace.

As an expert in leadership, inclusion, allyship, and emotional literacy, professionals connect with Ray because he leads from his heart and practices what he teaches in his own businesses and personal life. He brings an extensive business background and more than 15,000 hours in leading men to develop emotional literacy. Through his keynote presentations, workshops, executive coaching and management training, he applies the same heart-based principles that have helped him to lead a thriving business and fulfilling personal life.

Ray has delivered engaging talks to audiences featuring corporate leadership from organizations such as Oxy Petroleum, Manulife, Kaiser Permanente, Visa, Intel, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, PWC, PG&E, Genentech, and Chevron.

Learn more at www.rayarata.com

Buy the Book Here: https://www.amazon.com/Showing-Up-Become-Effective-Workplace/dp/1635769116

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Cred:

Production and Music: DJ Cellz

Transcript

0:00:01.0 Announcer: We've been about this work; diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging, shared through the voices of a White woman and a Black man. We bring lived experiences. We have pursued D&I progress for most of our professional lives. We use Crazy and The King to cover news, tips from colleagues, and host incredible guests. Listeners, count on Julie and I to transparently drive the conversation. We thank you for rocking with us. Check it. Julie, kick off the show.

0:00:38.3 Julie: Welcome, welcome, welcome to a very special episode of Crazy and The King.

0:00:44.5 Torin: On my frill... Listen, I am absolutely working on a new frequency. And the reason why is because I feel like, J, we are getting away from the intensity of the moment. This is where you ask me, "Well, what do you mean by the intensity of the moment?"

0:01:06.2 Julie: Oh, sorry. What do you mean by the intensity of the moment, Torin?

0:01:09.8 Torin: What I mean by the intensity of the moment is, I feel like, you know... And see, here's where I'm caught. I'm caught between that place where a part of Torin said, "I think that we've made progress when we are not referring to George Floyd." That's what I said. That was my own personal definition, not academic science. I just said, "I think organizations will be in a meaningful stride when whatever it is that they are doing, they're not doing it as a result of what happened in 2020." What I mean by the intensity of the moment, while I'm not hearing George Floyd, but I'm also not seeing enough work. I'm not seeing enough progress, and part of progress requires that we have more people doing the work, people that are carrying that banner of being an ally. And when we say that, J, what does that mean to you? If I say, "J, you are an ally." Cool, I can throw that on you all day long. You're un-bashful, you love compliment, you'll take it. But what does being an ally mean to you?

0:02:29.5 Julie: I think that you and I have kind of talked through this abstractly a few times when we think about heritage months and celebration and awareness months and those kind of things. And I mean, in its most basic form, to be an ally is to take action. You cannot just use your words when you're an ally, but it's also very important that you use your words and you use them frequently. It's not performative when you're taking the action and you're using the words. I think that's where a lot of people get confused about allyship or think that they're doing enough, just making the great posts on social media and all of those things. Those are important because they set the tone for us culturally. But if you are just putting the words out so that someone pays you a lovely compliment and says you're an ally, then that's when it's bullshit.

0:03:31.4 Julie: But here's the thing where it gets hard, I think, with allyship, is that it will... Let me say, you will, I will, never be perfect. Allyship is always imperfect. And I think that the biggest piece of lesson or the best lesson I have learned over the past four seasons of you and I getting to hang out every week and figuring these things out together, that I'm gonna be wrong a lot, and I have to be willing to take that and then change. And so much allyship, I think, stops or is demotivated by the expectation placed on the words about the expectation of never fucking it up, never being wrong. How many times have I called you and say, "I don't know what I did wrong, but I did something wrong, and now I'm freaking out." And you've had to kind of talk me off the ledge. You and I have had conversations to educate you on ableism and disability and all those kind of things, and that to me is the most important part of allyship is because if you get demotivated, if you get away from the intensity, that doesn't mean that the work needs to stop. Work always has to continue and imperfection is part of the work.

0:05:07.8 Torin: So for me, allyship is... It absolutely is action. It's clumsy, it's scary. Allyship can be well-timed. It could be graceful. I don't think that we should be afraid of exactly what you said, that imperfection. And I think that far too many people are afraid of the imperfection, they're paralytic around the imperfection. They want it to be just right, like it's formulaic, and it's not. It's the furthest thing from being formulaic. It's on purpose, it's inconvenient. It happens when it's least expected. Like, how many times have you been at a conference? Think about the conference where we were sitting on top of the roof bar and we were having cocktails, you remember, and I walked away and went to the room?

0:06:14.5 Julie: I know exactly what you meant.

0:06:16.3 Torin: You know what I mean? Allyship is inconvenient and un-timed, if you will. It's one of those things where we have to be willing to just know that we have to do something, that familiar hashtag of do something is so incredibly important, but what I want to make sure we land, in today's conversation, and I'm certain that our guest will get to it, and quite frankly, I'd love his perspective around this phrase, intention versus impact. And oftentimes when we hear that phrase, Julie, we hear people lean heavily on the impact side, diminishing the intentional side, the intention side. And I was a victim of that in September of 2019, shrinking in who I was as a individual. Because what they told me was, "Well Torin, it wasn't your intention, it was your impact," and I shrunk. Like for a moment, that was like, "Damn, I really messed up." And it took me probably five or six months before I recognized, "Wait a minute. You're never going to dim my light, just because the impact wasn't the way... If you know my body of work, and who I am, then you can never discount my intention and only evaluate me on my impact."

0:07:48.4 Julie: Yeah, yeah, and I know, again, I can remember when that happened and the effect that it had on you. And this week at Disability Solutions, we had something similar that happened at the office, and I had to get on the phone with a CDO and say, "You know what? Because we disagree on some of the core pieces of what disability means and who we are, that's us figuring it out as a community, but I'm not gonna create a situation where able-bodied individuals are making those decisions on our behalf. This is a community discussion, and to be able to help people understand how everything continues to evolve," and when we get into places where we won't even have scary conversations because we're afraid of being wrong, or when we say something that's disagreement, it's not dehumanizing, it's not right, it is intentionally having a conversation. And as long as we have people who are scared to muck it up, people who are scared to get it wrong, and then on the other side, we have everyone else demanding perfection, we're not gonna get past a lot of the issues that we're having as a human race, and that's really, I think the part that you and I both bring to this conversation, so long into doing this work is, "Hey, we're gonna muck it up, but we're not gonna stop because the intention is always the right intention." And if we have to say, we're sorry. We say, We're sorry, we learn, we change, we go forward, but we don't stop.

0:09:34.7 Torin: We don't stop. Let me give a stat real quick. August 24th, 2020, there was a survey released. I'm not sure exactly when it was conducted, but the study was conducted by Lean In and SurveyMonkey. Now, full disclosure, I already got my issues, certainly some reservations with the whole Lean In concept, but nonetheless, I'm respecting the survey. It was done by Lean In and SurveyMonkey, they polled approximately 7400 US adults between... Or shall I say over the age of 18? What they found was that more than 80% of White employees viewed themselves as allies. I need for you to stop for just a moment, like 80% of White employees polled view themselves as allies. In the academic grading system, 80% is a soft B, not a B plus, not a firm B, but it's still a B, passing grade, definitely going to make it through the maturation process, you're gonna graduate with your degree, you're going to enter into the workplace and be favorably looked upon with a 3.0 GPA.

0:10:57.8 Julie: Okay.

0:11:00.7 Torin: Favorably. But then I go back to the way that we opened up the show, I feel like we are losing the intensity of the moment, like we... What's happening? So I'm hoping that we can talk about that because 45% of Black women and 55% of Latino women said, "Bullshit. That's not the way that we see it in the workplace." So there is a disconnect that's happening, J.

0:11:29.0 Julie: Yeah. Absolutely, and I think White women are just a really great example of what's wrong with allyship most of the time, and so we can...

0:11:41.7 Torin: And that's hard... Let me tell you something. That's hard for people to hear, that's hard for some of our listeners to hear because they will hear it maybe through a channel of, "Wow, they're just being degrading, that's animus. Julie, since she said it, she's being... She's pandering." They will accuse you of pandering, they'll accuse me of playing the race card. Some. But my hope is that our listeners are more skilled and educated and analytical, and that they understand exactly where we're coming from. One, we're sharing statistic. Two, we're commenting on what we see through our lived experiences, and so we have an incredible guest that can talk about all of this. And I hope that we also get to talk about, is there a difference between or is it worse to be performative in your allyship. So I'm hoping that our guest can talk about that because there's an abundance of performative allyship. We got Congressional members wearing Kente cloths and taking knees, and we got CEOs that were taking some knees, and we got cities that are painting Black Lives Matter on streets, and we got a variety of different performative gestures. We got Juneteenth being designated as a holiday. Didn't nobody ask for that.

0:13:28.8 Torin: We didn't ask to... There wasn't a collective meeting in the Black community about given Juneteenth as a holiday. Now, there's something that I appreciated, but that wasn't the big battle cry for folks in the Black community, "Give us Juneteenth." So the performative things, I just don't want us to see them, and then we find ourselves measuring ourselves against that saying, "Oh, we've done enough and we are the 80%," that are in the Lean In SurveyMonkey research.

0:14:02.9 Julie: A whole lot to unpack there. Let's hear from one of our sponsors and then start this conversation with our guest, Ray Arata.

0:14:17.4 Julie: Alright. Welcome back. So several episodes ago, I think it was episode 9 of this year or this season, we mentioned a research that was published in a journal for the National Academy of Sciences, and it was about the use of language regarding women in leadership.

0:14:39.9 Torin: Yeah, Yeah, it was actually titled, Julie, "Hiring Women Into Senior Leadership Positions is Associated with a Reduction in Gender Stereotypes in Organizational Language." Now, you know that that shit is academic because that's a long title, but it was a really, really, really fascinating read.

0:15:02.9 Julie: Yeah, no, it was fantastic. First thing I did with it after that episode was send it to my daughter, so... And we decided to talk about the use of language and allyship with Ray Arata who feels men are finally waking up to the need to be accountable for their behaviors and actions. Ray is an award-winning DEI leader who's drafted seven highly effective steps for DEI. He was recognized by UN Women's Council in 2016 as a HeForShe champion for change and received the Ron Herron 2020 Award. And we are so excited to have him on the show. Welcome to Crazy and The King, Ray.

0:15:47.6 Ray Arata: Thank you.

0:15:47.6 Torin: Awesome, awesome, awesome. Yes, indeed, yes, indeed Ray.

0:15:52.1 Ray Arata: Thank you so much I just... I have one question. Who's Crazy? And who's the King?

[laughter]

0:15:57.6 Torin: Tell him, J. Tell him, tell him, tell him.

0:16:00.0 Julie: I am the Crazy all day and...

0:16:01.4 Torin: Give him the story behind that, give him the story.

0:16:04.4 Julie: [chuckle] I will. So when my husband decided that Torin and I should start a podcast together, he also decided that we needed a really really great name, and one of the first stories that Torin ever told us collectively, was that his mother called him a King when he was younger, and now, when he talks about his sons, they are the young Kings or the Kings. And I live with mental illness and have for my entire adult life, and so grabbing Crazy and owning that label for myself and then letting all the stigma roll away from it was one way that I have embraced my identity. And my husband is also a marketing genius who's good at creating podcast names.

0:16:51.9 Ray Arata: Thank you for answering that. I can align with the king piece because it's in my 22 years of men's work, it's one of those archetypes that I seek to align and to operate from, from a blessing place. That's probably a whole separate podcast. But thanks for having me here today, In listening to all of you, and it's also a great timing that my wife who's downstairs is calling me on my phone and I didn't have it off.

[chuckle]

0:17:24.4 Ray Arata: So we'll just keep rolling. I wrote some things down that I wanted to just kind of stitch together so that that could acknowledge many of the things that you were saying. And one of the things I wrote down was doing the work. And there's this thing, in terms of allyship, there's allyship in thought and there's allyship in action. So doing the work is, in my opinion, requires that we look at allyship as a way of life, and one of the things you said, and I'm gonna just refer to you as J. Initially when you were talking earlier, you said, J, I'm like, "No, no, no, my name's Ray," and then I realized you were talking to her.

[laughter]

0:18:01.3 Ray Arata: So there's this whole thing about wrong... Right, wrong. And my invitation for all of us is to reframe this as human, in so far... And then we... Then we don't go down this path of, "I did it wrong." I'm all about personal growth and working with men and human beings to be their authentic self, to be contrasted with their... One's performative self, which I'll get to in a second. And so you were hoping, Torin, that I would speak to intention versus impact, and I found it fascinating kind of the way you teed it up.

0:18:40.7 Ray Arata: Intention versus impact through my lens is one of those things that needs to be taught in so far as, if I said or did something, or I didn't do or I didn't say something, and it landed on you, and you're hurt, I could listen from the head and defend and center myself and say, "I didn't mean it." Or I could take a breath, a big fucking breath, there's my first F bomb, and get curious, and maybe, maybe even take some responsibility to say, "Hey brother, I'm really sorry that it landed on you that way," and for me personally, in that moment, I'm not gonna go down the toxic shame route that makes me feel like I'm a bad person. Maybe I just say I'm a human and I fucked up, and I'm gonna get up, I'm gonna own it, I'm gonna clean it up, and I'm gonna go back with people that look like me and say, "You know what, I got a blind spot, or a gap, and I did this. Help me work on this so I do it less." So any person that's been... Who comes from a historically marginalized group, I've talked to them about this. If they hear me, clean it up, own it, acknowledge the impact that I caused and then I say, I'm gonna go work on this. We're good. Let's get up. Let's keep going. So I just wanted to speak to that.

0:20:01.6 Ray Arata: And then the last thing, this notion of the research piece that you brought up, I refer to myself as forever an ally in training because the both of you know that nobody's an ally until somebody else says so. And so one of the things I do in my trainings with men is I ask them to... I say, I want you to be honest, there's five states of men in most organizations; there's a group that feel like DEI efforts threaten their job, underline the word their because that's their unexamined privilege. Write that for everyone to see. There's a group that don't feel included as part of DEI initiatives, they're the ones that say, "Hey, there's an LGBTQIA, ERG, a woman's ERG. But what about me?" There's a way we can deal with that. Then there's a huge group that is afraid to say or do the wrong thing, so they do nothing. As Jimmy Carter said, "Silence is violence." We don't want that either. Then there's a fourth group that wants to do the right thing, but it doesn't know what to do, and then the few are the proudly advocates.

0:21:03.0 Ray Arata: So when I ask men to appropriately categorize themselves, I say be honest because there's research out there that says you all think you're further along than you actually are. And then I ask everyone who doesn't identify as a man in the audience, "Okay, now what's your experience with most men." And what we see is men think they're here, everybody else, women and marginalized folk have this experience, this lived experience of where they are. So I'll stop there and we can go in a bunch of different directions. But I just wanted to acknowledge all that juicy stuff that you guys spoke to.

0:21:41.1 Torin: Well, so you hop right in and we appreciate that, so maybe you can rewind the tape just a little bit and give people a bit of an introduction to who Ray Arata is, just the Twitter-style introduction. But what I wanna zone in on is those five characterizations.

0:22:01.2 Ray Arata: Yes.

0:22:02.1 Torin: I wanna live with those five characterizations for a moment, and in the end of your Twitter-style introduction, how much honesty and transparency do you customarily witness when you are performing those trainings, when people are self-designated?

0:22:21.6 Ray Arata: So I'll start with the last question first. I'm a big believer in vulnerability, and part of my being on the planet has me use my super power of vulnerability, which requires that I need to go first. So you talked earlier about performative versus authentic. I know 'cause I've learned this lesson that when I go first, when I admit my mistakes, when I tell on myself, it opens the door for other men to do the same. So the Twitter-style piece here is Ray Arata, the father, the man, the ex-husband, the current partner, the leader, had a life experience called a divorce and a business betrayal that knocked me sideways in 1999, and I did a men's weekend, which was an initiation into healthy manhood that had me examine how the pained little boy in me was driving the adult bus. Translation, how I was impacting those around me. And so that sent me on this very long journey, and I know this is longer than Twitter 'cause I've already gone into what? 187 characters.

0:23:29.0 Ray Arata: But it's important for your listeners to know. And so when I chose to wrote the first book, I was probably [0:23:36.5] ____ 8-10000 hours in, I had done 40 men's trainings, so I've gone into maximum security prisons, all healing work, all let's be aware here, let's feel our emotions here. A Diversity and Inclusion Consultant said, "You have something here, Ray. You're an expert with men, corporate America needs to hear from you, but first go to this Women's Conference and listen." And that's when I realized, oh my God, all those times my mom told me, second born in an Italian family where all the rights and privileges and opportunities went to her brother, but not her 'cause she was a girl, I thought about my wife oldest in an Italian family of seven, and then my daughter who was gonna be graduating from Duke with a degree in computer science. I'm like, "Wow, somebody needs to do something." So after speaking to a bunch of women at women's conferences, I reached out to a bunch of corporate guys and women saying, "I've got this idea, I wanna bring healthy masculinity into the leadership conversation, I wanna do this conference, I know how to create a safe space for men, I want everybody to come and learn."

0:24:36.4 Ray Arata: That's what started the Better Man conference in 2016. And to your point around George Floyd earlier, okay, that you don't wanna hear people doing that because I share a slightly different view in that, it's my belief that time's up, me too, COVID, Black Lives Matter movement all have come together to form a perfect storm that's now putting the attention on the majority; men. But the problem is there's been a minority of men, the bad apples, all the ones in the news that have controlled the narrative. So we are at a perfect place in time where there is more interest, there is more openness and men and organizations are saying, "Alright, what do I do? How do I do this? Let's go. Let's combat sexism. Let's combat racism. Let's combat all of them." And for me, it's all about the heart. I'll stop there because that was way beyond Twitter, but you opened up the door and I drove the Mack truck right through.

0:25:31.2 Julie: I think it's very interesting. Torin and I always talk to people who are like, "How did you get into this work?" What was the moment for you that said, "Oh, this is the way that I wanna spend my life." And for you, it was understanding how pride and a lack of humility and ego was driving you to a failure. And I think it's so funny because even hearing you say that, I started to think about the men in my life who I've rarely ever heard say publicly, especially here's my breaking moment, here's the moment that I had this experience that changed me because of their... Just the male pride and the male ego. So thank you for sharing that. I think that's incredibly valuable. And I would also question, I think you come across as pretty optimistic, you sound really positive.

0:26:43.2 Julie: So is that because you are an eternal optimist, or is it because when you're going into these corporate boardrooms, when you're going in and doing trainings, you're seeing the five types of men, and you're seeing that some of the more willing to change and favorable and open groups are growing? Or that you think because the conversation has changed externally, that we're finally going to be able to break down the power structure and get past those who've been controlling things forever?

0:27:25.7 Ray Arata: So what I'll say is I am a positivist, but with an asterisk. I was in Folsom Prison, and I had done a huge piece of work, huge, gigantic. And when I got up off the floor after I'd cried my eyes out, the facilitator said to me, "So Ray, what's true about you right now? And it doesn't need to be positive," 'Cause he knew me. And I listened to the question, and I said, "I ache." And like right now, I'm tapping into it right now. I feel the pain that everybody else goes through. And with that said, a good leader can tap into that and then move out of it like I'm doing right now. Somebody has to be the fucking light, and that's me. So I make the... I assume positive intent. Because in my coaching business, if I connect to what's possible, that'll give me the energy and the mood level to confront all the bullshit along the way, including my personal stuff. So I take that same premise when I work with people and companies and invite them to think about what's possible. 'Cause if we process all the negative and all the pain, we're left with no negative and no positive. So let's shine the light and give ourself a positive context as to why we're gonna do this.

0:28:55.5 Ray Arata: So I've had many futile moment in this work, and unless I'm willing to reveal and show myself, they won't. And that's what has to happen. So for the rest of my days, that's my game plan. [chuckle]

0:29:13.7 Torin: When you say that's your game plan, are you saying that you want to... Are you saying that you want to get more men to exhibit, to extol that vulnerability, that transparency, is that what you're saying?

0:29:32.1 Ray Arata: Yes, and with a twist. Somebody asked me a long time ago, "How will you know your work is working and successful?" And one of my answers then was, "When men think it's cool to be vulnerable, to be authentic, to do their work and to not always be in charge." I don't know if that'll happen in my lifetime, but the younger generations are starting to say, "You know what? You 50-year-olds, we don't wanna be like you." So I have hope that men will start to understand and appreciate that vulnerability is a sign of strength.

0:30:13.2 Torin: Well, how do we do that, Ray? Because when I think about my work, I always say four words; empathy, intentionality, proximity and transparency. Empathy, intentionality, proximity and transparency. You have a process around empathy. Can you elaborate a bit on that process? Because I firmly believe with you, I'm in sync with you, that I think more empathy and vulnerability are pluses, they are lighter fluid for progress. What's your process?

0:30:49.2 Ray Arata: So I have a four-stage framework that contextualizes empathy. And we initially created this for men, now we use it, not just for men, but for anyone seeking to be an ally to anybody. So the first step, if you will, contextualizes awareness, which is acknowledge I have biased privilege, these things called emotions, and the acknowledgement of the Man Box, those set of unwritten rules of what it means to be a man, that don't work for anybody, men included. That's step one. Step two is, listen with empathy and compassion. This opens up the door to presence the lived experiences of others. And why is this so important? Because when any man hears what the lived experiences of others right around him, usually what I've seen is, "Oh my God, I have no idea, what can I do?" That's when we see empathy roots begin to grow. The third step is take responsibility for the impact you or someone else created by unexamined favors, your bias, whatever the case may be, and when necessary, clean it up. That third step opens up the door to explore intention versus impact.

0:32:03.6 Ray Arata: And I seek to help people understand that when someone brings to your attention that you said or did something that ended up being a micro-aggression, if you go down the path of, "It wasn't my intention," you just centered yourself, and you de-centered their experience. There is an opportunity, if they're open later, to understand the intention, but you're not gonna get there until you acknowledge that there was impact, even if you didn't mean it. And then the last step is commit to new behaviors and actions, that's contextualized as action or advocacy, if you will.

0:32:39.8 Torin: I wanna stay there for just a moment because you raise a very good point. And what I didn't say in the story is the steps that I went through for redemption, for apology, for awareness, and I did all of those things exactly the way that you said. So is there any value in my position though, of not dimming my light ever again and allowing people to minimize my intention? And you don't have to agree, but is there value in the statement of it's equally as important to know a person's intent as well as the impact?

0:33:18.4 Ray Arata: In hearing you say that, what I wanna say is until you, the micro-aggressor, hypothetically speaking, can acknowledge that this human being was at the affect of you, your intention's irrelevant, in that moment, right? And whatever's driving you to want them to get your intention, my invitation would be for you to look at that a little deeper because there's something underneath there that says, "I need them to know," and you're missing the boat.

0:33:51.2 Torin: Julie, you know what happened?

0:33:53.3 Ray Arata: 'Cause you personalized it.

0:33:55.6 Torin: Julie, you know what happened, you know where I'm getting ready to go, Julie. And Julie's gonna jump in. But Julie, you know where I'm going. Remember the weekend I got taken to the wood shed?

0:34:04.9 Julie: Yes. Yes, I do.

0:34:05.8 Torin: Over that Washington Post article?

0:34:08.8 Julie: [chuckle] Yes, the [0:34:09.1] ____.

0:34:10.1 Torin: Now, that right there, Ray, is a perfect example because that situation was different than my September situation. And so the way that you just described it, totally guilty. Because I wanted them in the moment like, "Yo, for real, I'm a really good dude." And I did not see Torin was centering himself in that discourse. I didn't see it. Julie helped me see it, you've helped me see it even a different way, so thank you, thank you, thank you, J.

0:34:47.3 Julie: Go ahead, Ray.

0:34:48.5 Ray Arata: Yeah, there's one more piece, it's an even deeper piece. When you say you want them to know that you're a good dude, the deeper piece is... And Carl Jung refers to this as shadow beliefs. That's a shadow belief of yours lurking in the darkness that's... It's a belief only, it's not true, that you're not a good dude, which has us wanna show people that we are. So it's a pattern interrupt that has you get back to, "I am a good fucking dude, and I'm gonna come from that place. I'm a good dude who said or did something that landed on somebody else. And just be... " Here's the key thing, just because I did that, it doesn't make me a bad person. Now, ego's out of the equation, you've re-aligned with you being a good person who had a human experience who made a mistake. And you were the bigger man 'cause you owned it. So that's just the other piece.

0:35:46.9 Julie: He did own it, and he always does. And I can't tell you how many times I've said to him, "You are a good person, a good friend, a great human," like, "Don't let this derail any of that." And so we wanna talk about the book, but just really just kind of one more question that I'm really curious about. Talent acquisition in the world where Torin and I live and do a lot of our moving is full of White men with an incredible amount of privilege. And I'm seeing progress in some of the men that I think he and I have a lot of exposure to, just 'cause they're getting hit on all sides, but they're also getting that... The beauty of the proximity, of being near to people who don't have that same White male privilege. And that's really encouraging to me, is that growth and that maturity. And so when you are in...

0:36:54.4 Julie: Again, kind of thinking... I'm really fascinated by this five-men group that you have or four-men group that you have, how movable are the men that are like, "You're threatening my ownership, my place in this world"? Are they coming along in the conversation, or are we gonna continue to sort of see this, what I feel like now with all this sort of culmination of these different movements, is that reflexively, the White male power structure is getting ready to smash us all again because they are threatened? Are we making progress with those men?

0:37:36.2 Ray Arata: The answer I would give you is yes and I must practice what I preach in so far as when I come across men like that, and I've come across White men of privilege in trainings who have gone down the road, and this is both in the US and abroad, that say, "This is how I grew up, I don't have any privilege." And they dig their heels in the ground. Until I'm able to educate them as to the difference between earned and unearned privilege. And so I'm like, "Hey, I don't know if those of you who believe in God." But if you do, none of us got a chance to say, "You know what? When I go down on Earth, I wanna be the White guy." It's an accident of birth. And when I start talking to them about... And I've used all sorts of techniques about what it's like for somebody who doesn't identify as White and male, of what it's like to be in a company, what it's like to walk into a room, what it's like to walk across the street, they begin to understand that they never have to go through that.

0:38:46.2 Ray Arata: And then when I take it one step further and educate them, "Imagine the impact and the burden and the fatigue and what that's like every single day of your life that you've never had to deal with," they begin to open up. And here's the beautiful thing about privilege. I seek to humanize it as opposed to demonize it. And once there's an awareness of what it is, which is an advantage, then you get to make a personal choice as a human being, what are you gonna do with it? And so in those four steps that I shared with you earlier, the listen with empathy and compassion, there's a subtext nuance of listening from the head versus listening from the heart. Listening from the heart has me wanna seek to understand where you're coming from. I had an email exchange this morning from a guy that... From a large company who I do a lot of business with. Him and his group of men are a outlier, and he's just looking at all the Critical Race Theory authors, and he said, "Many of your books say this."

0:39:51.7 Ray Arata: And he was typing stuff up on our virtual conference, and I decided to engage. And I had to seek to understand. And I found out that there was a lot of alignment there. And then at the end, it came out as Christian beliefs, don't identify with that, so I could still make him wrong, or I could just say, "Hey, I get it, I'm here, you're here." And so it was a great practice for me to try and meet one of those guys where they are disarm him and actually find some alignment. Now, I don't know where it's gonna go, but I've had instances like that as soon as this... As recent as this morning, so I'm hopeful.

0:40:34.4 Julie: And I think that's why it's so important that we have White men doing the work alongside us because that's a conversation Torin could never have. It's a conversation that I could never have because the man would be defensive immediately. So you were able to penetrate deeper and start planting the seeds of change that hopefully someone else is gonna come along and water and continue to grow.

0:41:01.8 Ray Arata: Yeah, I'm not gonna come and make them wrong. The work we do is devoid of shame or blame. So if I operate from, no one's wrong, and I'm gonna seek to meet them where they are and I'm gonna reveal myself and share myself, and between the three of us here and your listeners, show them how it's done, not performatively, but authentically, they'll know if I'm full of shit or not. That's the only way it's gonna work. And here's the thing, one man at a time, one leader at a time, one company at a time. And that's the work that guys that look like me, we need to do. Otherwise, it won't change.

0:41:44.7 Torin: So talk about the book. Tell us the title. I know we can find it on Amazon, perhaps some other platforms. Talk about the book.

0:41:54.4 Ray Arata: So the name of the book is "Showing Up: How Men Can Become Effective Allies in the Workplace." And I credit my former partner, Chris Bell, who came up with that title. My first book, was "Wake Up, Man Up, Step Up." Now, this is show up. And it really landed for me when she said that title. And so right before COVID, I said to myself, "I got all this jumble in my head and everyone keeps asking me... Men keep asking me what do I do. DEI leaders and women ERG leaders are asking me, what do I do to engage the men?" So I finally took the time to write the book, and I took license to come from the heart. And so in the book, I introduced the six principles of heart-based leadership; emotional literacy, vulnerability, authenticity, accountability, inclusivity and love. And so these are like cornerstones to guide people through those four steps of the allies journey that I mentioned.

0:42:50.7 Ray Arata: So I was encouraged by my publisher, "Give it a curriculum feel, give them exercises to do and give examples and stories." So that's what I did. And one of the interesting things that happened towards the end... The last chapter in the book is the multi-year game plan, basically, what companies need to do in order to effectively do this. And one of the guys I was interviewing was a White CEO of Cardinal Health, Mike Kaufmann, and he asked me, "Well, are you talking to any other men that identify other than White?" And I said, "Yeah, I was thinking about it." He goes, "You should really do that." So I created a chapter called, "Too often excluded voices of masculinity," and I interviewed a Black trans man, awesome guy, Sean Coleman, a gay Asian man, a White gay man, a White heterosexual man, and a Black heterosexual man. And I asked them their views on masculinity, I asked them for tips and what you wanted all of us to hear in the context of allyship, and I put that chapter in the beginning of the book.

0:43:56.2 Ray Arata: So when you deal with material like this, especially with men, sometimes it's too big of a deal for them to do a training or to join a men's group, or to do a workshop, or to go to a conference. But a book, they can read that when no one's looking, and they can put themselves on the journey. So the book was really yet another way that I sought to advance the movement, and I wanna get the book in as many hands of men as possible, and the book's a great read for DEI leaders and women and anybody else who identifies differently other than a White male.

0:44:40.6 Julie: So tell us where to find the book. Amazon. Do you have a website?

0:44:46.5 Ray Arata: Yeah. So if they go... Here's a cool thing. If you go to showingupbook.com, we have a bonus, that if you buy the book there, you'll get a virtual... Free virtual ticket to one of our Better Man conferences. So that's one thing I would encourage you all to do. That's a lay-up. I'm a former basketball player, I was a walk-on at UCLA, pardon the sports metaphor. And the other place, you can go on Amazon if you want, and then if you go to bettermanconference.com, sign up for our newsletter because I write blogs occasionally, we're gonna have a showing up series, which is gonna be like a community call once a month. And we'll give people information around the Better Man conference, which this year is gonna be live and streaming. And the Better Man Conference this year will be exploring patriarchy, power and privilege. Dismantling patriarchy, changing our relationship with power, and understanding privilege and how to use it. So in New York City at Hudson Yards, Tapestry will be our host on June 2nd. And then in San Francisco, the first week in November. So really excited. Things have been moving a little slow with Omicron in January and February, but the corporate giants are waking up and I'd better be ready.

0:46:05.4 Julie: Yes, sir. So once again, showingupbook.com, is that right?

0:46:10.4 Ray Arata: Mm-hmm. Yeah.

0:46:11.2 Julie: And bettermanconference.com.

0:46:14.0 Ray Arata: Correct.

0:46:15.3 Julie: Awesome...

0:46:15.9 Torin: Yeah, that's good. That's good.

0:46:16.1 Julie: Go ahead Torin.

0:46:16.2 Torin: Just real quick, again listeners, if you missed that part, showingupbook.com. Grab the book and receive a complimentary virtual ticket to the Better Man Conference. I'm sorry, J.

0:46:31.1 Julie: Yep, nope. So are you on social media? Where should our listeners follow you?

0:46:36.0 Ray Arata: Yeah. So Better Man movement is a tag, I'm on Facebook, Better Man Ray Arata on Facebook. The other thing is, if you go to rayarata.com, that'll speak to more, Ray Arata the man, the services, the testimonials. Cheryl Sandberg and several others have given me encouragement and kudos. So a lot of times I get asked to speak at companies or bring in these trainings 'cause a lot of companies are in the very, very, very early stages of this work. And so that would be one other place for them to look.

0:47:15.2 Julie: Wonderful. Well, we thank you so much for joining Crazy and The King, and the work that you're doing, and look forward to getting a copy of the book and checking out the conference, and having you back when we see what else has changed, and what the world has in store for us next.

0:47:36.8 Torin: Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. Alright, this week, our Her Voice segment, where we amplify women who made moves, I wanna do it a little bit differently this week. This time, we're gonna challenge each and every one of you, our listeners, to do a bit of digging. Instead of the normal cadence of Julie and I making name references, and then you reactively going out and researching these individuals, perhaps following these individuals. Julie and I want to flip this frequency. We want you to do a bit more proactive work, and so this time I want you to find two women in the C-suite, two women. Two women in the C-suite or on a corporate board that are discussing allyship, and we want you to consider following those women.

0:48:27.5 Torin: Second thing that we want you to do is celebrate two women. Find two women on Twitter, give them a shout out, perhaps why you are celebrating them, and then tag us, Crazy and The King or #CATK in that tweet. But we want you to amplify two women. And then the third thing that we wanna do in our Her Voice segment this time is, we wanna think about a woman that deserves a nomination. Now that nomination could be a promotion, a stretch assignment, could be a reallocation of resources, it might be a speaking opportunity that you, yourself, may have been invited to. But we want you to think about nominating a woman. In the next 30 days, find a woman that you can amplify, that you can give a signal boost to, that's what we'd like in this episode's installation of Her Voice.

[music]

0:49:31.9 Torin: And our quote is, "You are missing a huge opportunity if you focus on where, and don't focus on when and what. Not since the Industrial Revolution have people really had the opportunity to dissect work." That's Nickle LaMoreaux. She's the CHRO of IBM. Great show, Julie.

0:49:52.0 Julie: Yeah, yeah. Super having Ray on, and just a quick name drop for me this week to the High Alpha team and Alexa at Pillar for helping me get secure recording space today, when I am not at home, so we could have this conversation.

0:50:07.2 Torin: And I close, reminding each and every one of you to share the pod with your digital tribe. We encourage you to find your voice. You can't do this work from a position feeling less than empowered. Find your voice. Let's create better culture, better teams, better workplaces. For now, J and I are ghost

0:50:30.1 Julie: See ya.

Ray Arata Profile Photo

Ray Arata

Author/Founder/Coach/Ally

Ray Arata is a thought leader, sought-after speaker, and author who teaches important techniques that allow individuals and organizations to be more heart-centered, inclusive and effective.