“The best teams and the best leaders are the ones who will say: please tell me more about that.”  

What is inclusion? How do we practice it in organizational life? In this episode, I talk with Kelly McDonald, a speaker and author on the topic with an extensive background researching consumer trends and changing demographics. 

We discuss how to create an inclusive workplace with practical strategies like acknowledging discomfort, understanding different perspectives, and overcoming unconscious biases. While we often talk about diversity and inclusion, Kelly insists that many leaders aren’t comfortable having the conversations that will produce deeper understanding and genuine inclusion. She shares practical tips to help leaders stop shying away from difficult conversations for fear of “saying the wrong thing”, and instead learn to ask questions and listen with curiosity and respect.

Kelly highlights the importance of respect and listening fully to the experiences shared by diverse groups to foster real communication and inclusion.  We discuss how to lead diverse teams effectively by tapping into different backgrounds and viewpoints to drive innovation, business success, and a more collaborative culture.

In this episode:

  • What it means to create an inclusive workplace
  • The importance of respect and listening
  • How to lead diverse teams effectively
  • And more!

Power Presence Academy: Practical Wisdom for Leaders is the go-to podcast for anyone who leads. Your host is Janet Ioli, leadership and human development expert, sought-after coach and advisor to global executives, and former executive with experience in four Fortune 100 companies. She helps leaders ground themselves with confidence, connection, and purpose and learn to lead with Less Ego, More Soul.


Noteworthy Quotes from This Episode

“That’s why I wanted to broaden the lens of conversations about diversity to encompass any way you can be different than me.”

“We don’t always have to agree. But I think what we have to do is […] try to understand the other person’s perspective. And the way that you get to that is by asking.”

“So collaboration and inclusivity is, to me, how you demonstrate respect. You can’t just say the word.”

“That person is trusting you with a story and an experience that they have that probably shaped their perspective. We need to listen to that. And we need to acknowledge the squirm.”


Resource Links: 

Kelly McDonald is the President of McDonald Marketing, she has over 20 years of experience advising global brands on marketing strategies.  Through her bestselling books, likeHow to Work with and Lead People Not Like You”, she shares practical tools for overcoming unconscious bias and creating respect across differences.

Connect with today’s guest on LinkedIn: Kelly McDonald

If you want to become more grounded, confident, and aligned with your deeper values in just 21 days. Check out my book Less Ego, More Soul: A Modern Reinvention Guide for Women.

If you enjoyed this episode, please leave a review on Apple PodcastsSelect “Listen in Apple Podcasts,” then choose the “Ratings & Reviews” tab to share what you think.  

Connect with Janet Ioli:

Linkedin: Janet Ioli

Instagram: @janetioli

Website: janetioli.com

Janet is the founder of Power Presence Academy.  She helps leaders ground themselves with confidence, connection, and purpose and lead with Less Ego, More Soul.


Produced by Ideablossoms