During Black History Month, Inspire celebrates the stories of our corporate and franchise team members, as well as franchisees as we reflect on the significant roles that African-Americans have played in shaping U.S. history. Today, we spoke with LB Harrison, who is a talent advisor at Inspire. He is also a member of our Black Voices @ Inspire Business Resource Group, which is dedicated to advocating for diversity at all levels of our organization and cultivating an inclusive culture.
What drew you to joining the Black Voices @ Inspire BRG?
As a Talent Advisor, my position is to identify ways to help make Inspire Brands the best company to work for. We want to promote diversity and inclusion, and we want to be able to coach and retain the talent we have within the organization. Therefore, I wanted to partner with other likeminded professionals to use our platform and network to increase the conversation of diversity at all levels, while serving as a development resource and a networking bridge for Inspire’s future leaders.
Why is being a member of this BRG important to you?
Being a member of Black Voices @ Inspire is important to me because it gives me an opportunity to foster improved working relationships within all cultures of the organization and uncover black talent that may otherwise go unnoticed. Many times, black employees are uncomfortable speaking out about certain issues related to diversity, promotion and networking outside of the black community, and I have demonstrated that I am a successful liaison between cultures to create an environment that promotes a OneInspire Team.
What are your aspirations as a member of this BRG?
My aspirations as a member of this BRG are to:
- Create a safe space that allows members and allies to have uncomfortable conversations in a comfortable and nonjudgement environment as we discuss and create solutions for any cultural issues within the organization.
- Work with our allies and leadership team to promote a OneInspire culture where mentorship is active and growing, lines of communications are clear and retention of top-performing talent is present at all levels of service.
What excites you about the future of the Black Voices @ BRG?
I believe Black Voices @ Inspire will help develop leaders through mentor interaction and hands-on skill building activities. I am excited to see the growth of membership and allies that will play a significant part in creating a change to successfully develop a #OneInspire team.
What does Black History Month mean to you?
Black History is more significant than a surface level focus on Blacks in America. Black History Month is a time to better understand human empathy and commemorate the struggles that are met in the journey to attaining the basics of universal rights for all people; regardless of their innate characteristics. This time should not only be used to pay tribute to overcoming struggles, but also to recognize the strong vitality of people and the achievements they have contributed to the society that built this civilization. So, to me, Black History Month and every other month is about being intentional in developing compassion, learning empathy and participating in conversations promoting change for the future.
How are you celebrating Black History Month?
This month, Black History will be celebrated with my wife and children as we learn more about our heritage. Together, we will choose a different inspirational leader to learn about their past, their struggles, and what they had to overcome to achieve the extraordinary accomplishments that paved the way for generations after them. We will participate in interactive activities and virtual museum tours. During this time, I want my family to be encouraged to take advantage of opportunities that will improve their future, because there was a time when blacks in America did not have certain opportunities. I want all of us to continue to gain knowledge and be motivated to always give our best. As we learn about our Black History Leaders, we will continue to see that through persistency, hard work, and with our allies, we can accomplish anything we put our minds to.
To learn more about the Black Voices @ Inspire BRG or to join the group, contact Daija Griffin.
This story is part of an ongoing series that celebrates the stories of our corporate and franchise team members, as well as franchisees as we reflect on the significant roles that African-Americans have played in shaping U.S. history. Click here to read other stories like this.