Befriending Dragons

Transform Tech with Anti-bullying Cultures

Two dragons in front of flowers

Let’s Befriend Dragons Together

Cindy Gross [she/her]

We nurture equitable tech cultures where everyone thrives and belongs. This starts with a foundation of anti-bullying, anti-harassment, anti-racism, and anti-sexism that goes beyond most current Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion programs to retain a wider variety of tech employees.

We work together differently to nurture more equitable tech cultures

Public Speaker

  • Interrupt Bias & Anxiety During Remote Work How to reduce bias and anxiety when we’re tired, overwhelmed, and stressed.
  • Reclaim Your Voice We forge and nurture paths to reclaim our lives, our work, our passions, and our voices after facing bullies or harassers.
  • AI + Brand Cultural Reviews How to examine AI assumptions/goals and business items for potential bias that may exclude, offend, or just not attract categories of historically marginalized customers. This extends publishing “sensitivity reviews” into the tech world.
  • Become a Dragon of an Ally How to be an ally to non-white, non-male folks.
  • Customized for your needs Custom engagements tailored to retaining a wider variety of folks in your tech workplace.

Business Consultant

Strategic Advising
Create trauma-informed Anti-Bullying + Anti-Harassment programs that heal & retain more historically marginalized and underrepresented folks.
– Drive better business outcomes: Identify ways to make your culture & products more inclusive for employees and customers.
– Culture Review aka Sensitivity Reader: Reduce the bottom line cost of social & identity bias in your AI / ML algorithms, product design, and media.

My Anti-Bullying programs include
Focus on healing people targeted by bullies
– Identify unmet needs within your org. How do the needs of people targeted by bullies differ from “standard advice” based on their identity and lived experiences. Incorporate those needs into existing organization policies, procedures, and processes.
– Advise bullying targets how to talk with their current or next manager about their experience facing a bully, why they’re looking for a new role, and what they need to be successful.
– Introduce or enhance trauma-informed career coaching – provide coaches who understand how motivations and needs are impacted by the experience with the bully.
– Put processes in place so employees can discover and vet teams, roles, and/or clients where they feel safe and valued.
– Incorporate advice on which wellness, therapy, meditation, and physical movement options fit healing needs.
– If, how, when to speak about their experiences in a way that is healing for each individual.
– Is there a social, charity, or political action that will help individual employees heal?

Focus on organizational culture change
– Prioritize healing the people who have been targets of bullies or harassers.
– Switch language, actions, and rewards from “I’m not a [bully, harasser, racist, sexist]” to “I work to achieve anti-bullying, anti-harassing, anti-racist, and anti-sexist cultures.”
– Design policy, procedure, and program changes that emphasize and reward anti-bullying behaviors from individuals, teams, and organizations.
– Discover where trauma-informed training and changes can create positive change within your organization.
– Design and offer anti-bullying focused wellness, healing, and social programs individuals can opt into.
– Facilitate discussions on where gaps exist, what changes will make people feel safe and valued, and how to create a culture where everyone can thrive and belong.

Coach

It’s not a little thing. Empathy-led coaching for women and non-binary folks who faced harassment or bullying in tech. Together we will plan a path forward with moves to action which help you heal and find success. A therapist is the one to help you process emotions, I can help you re-engage with the world in ways that make sense to you.
– Navigating Microsoft. I’ll coach you through joining Microsoft, navigating role changes, or addressing specific challenges.

My Story

I’ve met many scary dragons in my life – breast cancer, divorce, a layoff, changing roles and technologies, workplace harassment as a Microsoft woman in tech, constant striving to meet some impossible to meet bar for success, and the idea that we always have to put work first. Most recently I left the corporate world to strike out on my own, into a rich community filled with people like me who create justice, meaning, allies, and dreams. Each time I step back and look at the situation from different angles to get through it. I befriend each dragon, learn how to make it a part of my past and take only the parts I want forward to the next stage of my life. That’s what befriending dragons is all about – take those scary things and blend the best parts into our lives. Then we can respond in the way we each need, the way that takes us down the path we want.

Hear more of my stories here.

Contact Me

Cindy Gross She/Her/They

 

One thought on “Let’s Befriend Dragons Together

  1. Many thanks & much gratitude for your energy today! I participated in your Zoom webinar through the Riviter… I can’t wait to connect with you & your material more! I’m always feeling like I’m between a rock & a hard place with ALL OF THESE CONCEPTS … I just had a conversation which I was agreeing with the person of color & asking for her input & Guidance & she was not only evasive but she pulled a fragility card on me & not only left the conversation but erased the conversation & I would have loved for you to have been able to Decipher it because I’m always trying & never succeeding in being an ally.

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