Allyship at Stride
How we got started
Tech giants publicize diversity reports, culture consultancies host booked-up Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) conferences, and “D&I” think-pieces create an unbroken thread on our LinkedIn feeds. Diversity, Inclusion, and Belongingness are top-of-mind for our industry, and last quarter our Member Experience team needed to know more, so we hosted an educational discussion series on it.
While talking about one of these diversity-in-tech think pieces, we narrowed in on the fact that, for all the buzz around diversity and inclusion, the diversity report numbers never seem to change. Given that our company hadn’t broached the topic within our workforce, we thought that there was an opportunity for Stride to act instead of talk. We were especially excited because it felt like a proactive move; instead of having mandatory D&I training or a D&I team, we had the opportunity to let the company opt-in to Allyship, and the response was huge!
Why we felt it was important
Allyship emphasizes the concept of advocating for one another, and doing what we can to dismantle societal ideas and systems that continue to oppress marginalized people. Doing good, building a future that provides economic security and success for everyone, these are foundational for Stride, and as we grow we want to be as diverse as the world around us. This means that we need to make a workplace in which everyone can succeed and belong. Stride has big plans for the future and we see Allyship as an integral part of growing a successful company.
Allyship community—what it is now
We kicked off our first meeting in March and had a big enough turn-out from the company to encourage us to schedule a second meeting. Our first session focused on what Stride does well and where we could do better to promote inclusion and belongingness in our office. Since then, many fellow Striders have stepped up with their own initiatives that create a more inclusive environment.
As we grow our Allyship community, we align our actions around a simple mission—to create a regular space centered around diversity, inclusion and belonging, where all Striders can learn, be challenged, and openly share.
The most rewarding part of our work has been the support and ideas that the Allyship meetings have been enriched by, flooding in from everyone who works at Stride. While the space was pitched by two entry-level newcomers to Stride, the membership has representation from every team at the company. Thanks to our coworkers, we are able to have discussions that are far more wide-ranging and productive, and the initiatives that have been proposed have cross-company visibility, collaboration, and support.
Allyship Community—our future goals and vision
Our goals are modest—we want to continue to provide a space and a spark for discussions related to diversity, inclusion, and belonging at Stride. As long as people keep on showing up and making it all happen, then we know we are doing a good job! If we can bring consistently engaging and educational programming to our team, we think that it will have larger impacts at Stride (increased diversity, inclusion, and belonging), and will equip Striders to bring these values and ideas with them into the world in an ever-expanding network of our friends and coworkers fighting against in-group dominance and exclusion.