WorkLife with Adam Grant
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I was always a fighter and I was hyperverbal from the time I was really little. I got, "talks too much" on my nursery school —

(Laughter)

you know, evaluation.

Adam Grant: That's Ashley Judd. She's an actor, activist and humanitarian. In October, she fueled the Me Too movement with her allegations of sexual harassment against Harvey Weinstein. I asked her if she was afraid to speak up.

AJ: I was afraid of what it would cost me if I didn't and what it would cost me if I didn't would be my integrity and my character and my dignity.

AG: Sexual harassment is a huge problem in workplaces and I want to know what we can do to stop it.

(Music)

I'm Adam Grant and this is a bonus episode of WorkLife, my podcast with TED. Thanks to our sponsors: Accenture, Bonobos, JPMorgan Chase and Warby Parker.

The Me Too movement has shown that victims of harassment cannot be silenced and voice can be a catalyst for change, and that every leader has a responsibility to make sure people are supported, not punished for speaking up. To move that conversation forward, Globoforce invited me to host a panel on Me Too at their annual WorkHuman conference. Every year they gather thousands of people who care about making work better and this year in Austin, Texas, I had the honor of interviewing Ashley Judd, Ronan Farrow and Tarana Burke. Tarana founded the Me Too movement and she and Ashley were recognized as silence breakers for "TIME" magazine's "Person of the Year." Ronan just shared the Pulitzer Prize for his investigative reporting in "The New Yorker" on Harvey Weinstein. It was the first time the three of them had come together to talk about the movement. There were some sobering comments, but also some real moments of levity — and of hope. I came away with a strong conviction that we can make progress, not just in awareness but in action and change.

AG: Tarana, I'd love to start with you since you dreamed up the Me Too movement more than a decade ago. Can you tell us about how you started it and why?

Tarana Burke: So I lived in the South in the early 2000s. I spent my whole life doing social justice work — literally since about 13 or 14 years old — and it was really strange to me that in the communities where I fought and worked, where I organized, we would fight about police brutality, we would fight about economic injustice and political issues, but gender-based violence, sexual violence was never seen as a social justice issue. It was always seen as a singular, individual issue, right? We would deal with individual people and what happened to them. And so I was in a position where we had founded this organization for young black and brown girls in Selma, Alabama — in the Southern community — and the thing that was very constant in those interactions with those girls is that they had experiences with sexual violence. These were seventh and eighth-grade girls. And so all of my experience as an organizer — I had heard the same things about how you engage our community and one of the main things was community issues deserve community responses, and so nobody in the community was ready to galvanize and put together a community response. And so the Me Too movement — the idea of it as a movement — came from wanting to respond to what I saw as a social justice issue in our community. You can't have seventh and eighth-grade girls over and over again revealing experiences with sexual violence and not think of that as a community issue. And as an individual, I'm a survivor of sexual violence. I'd carried that weight my whole life, since I was child, and didn't have people at an early age who were interrupters, who intervened, who even gave me any kind of hope. I felt very isolated and alone for most of my childhood and a lot of my adult life, and what started to change that for me was when I had a couple of things. One, I had other adult women survivors who became interrupters; who interacted with me and showed me immense amounts of empathy, right? It was when it shifted from, you know, if you reveal your story to somebody and they're like, "Oh, I'm so sorry that happened to you." There's still a distance there. There's an othering that happens that makes you feel more alone. And the times when people embraced me and said, "You know what? I understand that. I have a real deep connection to that, I get it," and I could talk about things that I thought were just singular issues to me and people would say, "No, I understand that," that's what started to change for me.

And there was a time in my life when a young person came to me and shared these very hard circumstances that they had gone through, and I didn't have the wherewithal to say "that happened to me too." And the moment that I didn't say it, I realized that that would have been enough — at least that, because if somebody had said to me at 13 or 14, "You're not the only person in the world — you and Maya Angelou are not the only two people that this happened to" — because I really did believe that as a child. I had read "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" and it was the first time I saw somebody else who had had this experience, and so I spent a good deal of my childhood thinking this only happens in books and in my life. And it was completely isolating, so if somebody had said, "It's unfortunate but it does happen to a lot of people; you're not alone," that would have changed my life. And so very early on, I saw how sharing my story and using my story as the impetus became a way to change the trajectory of these young people's lives. And very quickly that became adult women, and then it spread from there to other survivors, and so this idea of empowerment through empathy was so strong and so useful, it was beyond just individual healing. I recognized that healing was possible and individual healing was necessary, but community healing was what would be needed to actually interrupt sexual violence. And so as an organizer, I think what makes this different — the work that we try to do with Me Too different — is that it's not just about healing an individual, it's about healing a community.

(Applause)

AG: Tarana, when you talk about interrupting, you point out that these problems start early. What guidance do you offer them on how to interrupt from the very start?

TB: The way we interrupt is by talking, by being vocal, by being verbal, by tearing down the walls of shame. And part of what happens is that this shroud of shame that we live under around sexual violence makes young people, especially, feel complicit in their own abuse, right? There are ways that we talk about sexual violence in our communities, and particularly in certain cultural communities, the way we deal with sexual violence makes young people feel complicit. I spent so many years thinking that it was my fault, right? And so one of the ways that we interrupt sexual violence is by sharing truths that tear down the lie that these things are your fault, that tear down the lie that there's something that you could have done differently. Once we start tearing down those lies, it's empowering, right? I think it's really important to engage survivors in general — particularly young people — but survivors in general from a place of power, from a position of power. It's not just empowering — we have power. So a lot of times it's not about empowering, but it's activating that power. And you can activate that power by lifting the veil of shame. We can activate that power by talking openly about the truth about sexual violence and not shying away from those words.

(Applause)

AG: So Ashley, you were a major catalyst for this movement when you spoke up about Harvey Weinstein. What was it that motivated you to break the silence?

AJ: I'm a teller. I've always been a teller. I really have to go back to the first time that I was molested that I remember. I was seven years old and I immediately went to some grown-ups — Tori and Jeff — and told them. That was just my natural, gut instinct. And you know, Tarana was talking about how we're here in part to teach people who experience sexual and gender-based violence that your response is healthy and natural and OK because that response comes from the oldest part of our brain. It comes from the brain stem and we go straight to fight, flight or freeze, and I also heard someone recently use "fawn," which I think is quite interesting because some people do return repeatedly to their perpetrator. But I was always a fighter and I was hyperverbal from the time I was really little; I got "talks too much" on my nursery card — my nursery school evaluation —

(Laughter)

And so when Harvey sexually harassed me, the particular incident that's so well-known at the Peninsula, my dad was with me. He was visiting me from Kentucky, and I went straight down into the lobby of that hotel, and he says that he could tell from the look on my face that something devastating had just happened to me, and I immediately told him. I mean, I would have told the concierge because that was the authority person in the room, right? As Scott Rosenberg has said, who else? There wasn't a fantasy attorney general of Hollywood to whom I could report this. I did tell my agent; I told Gary Fleder who was directing "Kiss the Girls," the picture I was making at the time, and everyone else on set. And I've run into scores of people since this article came out on October 5 who said, "Oh yeah, we were sitting at that Kentucky game and you told me about it." So the difference I think was that the "New York Times" and Jodi Cantor and Megan Twohey did such a phenomenal journalistic job with the article, Ronan followed it up with his completely shattering pieces and the world was finally able to hear.

(Applause)

AG: Ronan, when you were breaking this story, what was going through your mind?

Ronan Farrow: On two levels, I think it became very apparent very quickly, almost from the beginning, how important this was. One of the levels was this was a public safety issue — at a certain point. The moment it became apparent that this was pattern, and you know, one of the distinctions between the stories that initially broke this open is the very first source I talked to was talking about sexual violence. It was a rape allegation, on the record, and so when you're dealing with what it's increasingly apparent is a pattern of widespread rapes, at a certain point it became impossible to sleep at night if I wasn't going to try to honor the sources who were putting so much on the line to talk about this. And you know, people like Ashley speaking out early on, were absolutely a lifeline — every single voice counted, and for the victims of sexual assault in this story, the women who spoke out about the harassment were part of the foundation that they could stand on. And so the one-two punch of those two facets of it being exposed I think ultimately is part of what catalyzed this into something so huge.

The other facet of it that made it a matter of such urgency in my mind was that this was about systems, ultimately. This was not just about Harvey Weinstein, this was not just about the entertainment industry, this was a phenomenon that it was very clear to me was playing out in every single industry and that men and women, from blue-collar workers to executive boardrooms were dealing with this range of issues from harassment to assault, and that there were elaborate systems in place that could be utilized by the most powerful and the wealthiest — usually men in this country — to silence voices that spoke out against that. And as I spoke to these very brave sources who came forward — I wish I could take any credit for this, this was about sources like Ashley, who spoke — it became apparent that the systems were just as much of a story as the underlying allegations. A lot of those systems play out within the structures of the private sector and powerful companies, and they involve people at the very top of those companies commandeering the process that you all have as your sacred charge, and what you do is important. The moments where you stand up and say, "You know what, actually I need to enforce this system even if the most powerful person in my world says that I shouldn't. Even if there's something hinky going on." That can make all the difference. That can — it turns out, when these things emerge — be something for the history books.

(Applause)

AG: Ronan, when you talk about systems, it's tempting to look at this problem and say what we need are systems that essentially identify and root out bad apples. But there's also a little bit of a bad barrel story here, where some of this behavior gets normalized and maybe spreads beyond the worst apples. What's your sense of that?

RF: It's both, right? It's about individual accountability and it's almost unfortunate in a way that it took as extreme an example as Harvey Weinstein, where there are dozens of women with allegations — many of them are violent rape allegations — you know, it shouldn't necessarily have taken that to break open this issue. There's a whole spectrum of allegations and behavior that needed to be addressed, but it did take that kind of extreme and clearly that's a "bad apple," to use your metaphor. But you're right — the barrel is bad. The systems are bad. It became very apparent to me over many, many months of conversation with very, very brave women living in the worst moments of their lives, which they had to relive very painfully and at great risk of retaliation to tell these stories, that we had a whole legal, criminal justice system that was set against these women, not set up to help them. That the systems at their companies were set up to oppose them and silence them and intimidate them. That the media landscape that they entered into before these stories was very inhospitable. And I hope that we've nudged that in the right direction, and by we I really mean survivors of sexual assault and of harassment and people like Ashley who spoke, and people like Tarana who are turning the facts we now have into a movement that can galvanize change. But yeah, it's a bad barrel. Let's break the barrel.

TB: Yeah.

(Applause)

AJ: So smart.

(Applause)

AG: Ashley, you've spoken a lot about Jennifer Freyd's research on how institutions often betray people and that what we need instead are courageous institutions. Can you talk to us a little about how that works and how you see it playing out in workplaces?

AJ: Sure. So Professor Freyd is a really powerful scholar and she's also a very practical one. She created the acronym for exactly what happens when a perpetrator denies attacks and then reverses the victim-offender order, and it's called DARVO. So for example, when Harvey posts a picture of him with his arm around me and it's clear that I'm uncomfortable and shrinking and trying to get away, that's an example of DARVO, where he's trying to reverse the victim-offender order and say that we were actually buddies and friends, and there are a variety of ways that perpetrators do that. So she's really a handy professor. And in terms of institutional betrayal and bad barrels, institutional courage, first of all, suggests to me that institutions are comprised of individuals, and so it takes individual humility, being teachable and individual courage. There are things like knowing the laws and the civil codes and complying with them. And where there are gaps or they're less than they should be, having your own company set a higher standard for itself. Anonymous surveys are really powerful when they're developed by social scientists. Cherish the whistle-blower is really important to protect that culture of it being OK to come forward and divulge, and then having that trauma-informed response to folks who have been harassed and experienced sexual misconduct so that they can tell their stories in ways that are safe and appropriate and effective. So those are just some of the examples of institutional courage, but it really has to boil down to individuals just growing a damn backbone —

TB: How about that?

AJ: And being willing to end impunity and do the right thing.

(Applause)

And of course hiring and promoting women is absolutely key because it's fundamentally about asymmetry of power.

TB: But I still think that even when we hire women, we have to have untraining, right? Patriarchy affects us all across the board and I feel like hiring women is an answer, but if you are a woman who's also steeped in patriarchy, it's not going to be helpful, and so we need to promote and train. AG: So let's talk about how to have some of these conversations. Not an easy task, right? You've each touched on this. Ashley, you said to me a couple months ago that we need to get comfortable being uncomfortable and that seems like a reasonable first step. Ronan, that's part of your job, right? It is to make people comfortable. Tarana, you've been doing this for years. We have some incredible HR leaders in this room whose job it is to make those conversations safe and I'm wondering what your advice is to all of them.

TB: I think, you know, the idea of being uncomfortable — we're clearly in a different time, right? And a lot of the reasons why people had not heard of the Me Too movement beforehand, or why we hadn't had a national conversation is because we are so deathly afraid of being uncomfortable, even for a couple of minutes. Even right now, people are like, "What's next? What are we going to do now?" And I'm like, "We're going to sit still. We're going to sit in this moment," and we still have a lot to unpack. We've only dealt with a very small part of the spectrum of sexual violence; we have a lot to unpack, so we need to be uncomfortable as a country.

RF: I would also highlight the important role of empathy and altruism, and appealing to the part of anyone who cares about that. And that is usually present in anyone who is at least at the point of grappling with the decision in a difficult and incisive way. And it's a game theory problem on this issue: everybody wants to speak and help, but nobody wants to go first. And so I'm forever grateful to the women who spoke first and took that leap, because it's easy to say, "Oh, it's a bandwagon — a lot of people," but that wasn't the case at the time and I know that they did it because they sincerely and profoundly cared about helping others. AG: What does it take to show women, or anyone who chooses to take a stand, that they will actually get heard?

AJ: We have to do it; we have to hear them and I think that compassionate witnessing, and each of us learning how to listen on a more deep and humane level is the fulcrum on which the integrity and the quality and the potential of the movement swings. And I also have to know as a listener that I come with my privilege, I come with my implicit bias, and the best I can do is admit I don't know what I don't know, and if I can at least confess that to myself and the person to whom I'm giving a good listening — you know, we all need a good listening to — then at least there's that aperture through which we can connect and seeing and hearing people of color and different abilities and sexual orientations and gender identities is part of listening to a story that can move the needle.

(Applause)

TB: I think — I mean, obviously I get asked about intersectionality and about race and culture all the time. The thing that's important for me is, you know, I've been doing this a long time, I'm 44 years old, and when young people ask me about it, I always say, "Well, I have hard boundaries." This is maybe not the most Deepak Chopra moment, but —

(Laughter)

But I have hard boundaries at this age because we're not going to move the needle at all if we don't work together — that's very clear — but what tends to happen is when people say, "Let's work together," and it's across races, for instance, and there's a privilege differential, the person with the most privilege is the person who gets heard. And so that happens at the expense of, on the backs of the people with less privilege, right? And so when Me Too first went viral, everybody, black women in particular, rose up. Shout-out to black women, always, because nobody would know me if it wasn't for black women en masse coming forward.

(Applause)

But people were worried and said, "You know, they're going to take this from you. They're going to take this from you. You're going to be erased from the story." And that didn't happen because of the work of black women, but it also didn't happen because I think we are making some strides in this idea of what intersectionality means. So, a perfect example: right now, we talk about Harvey Weinstein a lot. We don't talk about R. Kelly as much, or Bill Cosby even as much, right? And so as a black woman who's doing this work, I want to work in allyship with other women outside of race, I want to work with white women, but if I am bothered by and wanting to fight for you because of what this person did to you and you can't see what this other person is doing in my community, and you can't speak up about that, that's problematic. That's not us working together.

(Applause)

AG: So let's talk about some of the side effects of this movement. In November I got a call from Mary Barra at GM saying, "I've been working for years on getting male senior executives to mentor women and we'd made progress, but now they're afraid — they're afraid of being alone in the room with a woman, they're afraid of making women uncomfortable." And then Lean In and Survey Monkey followed up with a survey showing almost half of male managers are uncomfortable mentoring women or socializing with women, in part because they're concerned about what effect their behavior might be having, or what others might be thinking. What do you think it's going to take to overcome those fears and make sure we don't take a step backward as we're moving forward?

AJ: I think that's totally understandable and I was hoping that we would get around to social constructs of gender, in particular, masculinity, toxic masculinity and how boys and men can be a part of the solution. I understand men feeling awkward, because all of a sudden, things that they have done maybe consciously or intentionally or felt they had an entitlement to do, are no longer OK and it can throw into question a whole array of behaviors, even ones that are innocently well-intentioned. Now, it's not the solution to sequester ourselves and go hide and play ostrich, and so I love organizations like A Call to Men and Mentors in Violence Prevention, which talk about developing new, cultural, healthy norms around what masculinity looks and sounds and can feel like, and the corporate world is not immune to that. That's not just touchy-feely stuff for the social justice movement, that's for everybody, because as we've said, corporations and institutions are comprised of individuals and it takes that humility and being teachable, being willing to make mistakes and also just having direct dialogue face-to-face. Like, what is wrong with saying, "Hey, I feel awkward"? What is wrong with saying, "You know, previously I may have done X, but maybe today I'm supposed to do Y and I don't really know the difference, somebody help me out here." And I think I told Adam or somebody this little story about how I was recently at a basketball game — it did not have the outcome I preferred —

(Laughter)

But it was at the gym where the Atlanta Hawks play and I was fortunate enough to get to hide during halftime in the owner's suite, and we're all just basketball fans and so the GM or the owner, he came up and he gave me a big hug and everyone in the room went —

(Gasping)

"You can't do that." And I was like, "Look, man, I set and maintain my own healthy boundaries. I am an autonomous physical entity and I can decide who, when, if to hug and for how long — it's really OK." But what was amazing is that there were eight of us — five suits and ties — talking about it openly, and it was a wonderful conversation and we all learned something from that. It's OK to be human.

(Applause)

RF: I also — I would just caution that certainly the reporting I did is not really about what we're discussing now, like the accidental hug in the workplace. And that's a fine, separate conversation, but I see some of these arguments get weaponized and used against survivors and against women speaking out — "Oh my gosh," you know, "Mike Pence isn't going to be alone in a room with a woman now, what are we going to do?" And to me it is actually not related to survivors of sexual violence and harassment — genuine harassment — speaking out. And that's a really important distinction. You know, look, I'm a professional guy who interacts with women and men and I'm alone in rooms with people, and I navigate this just like any other grown-up in this room. And on one level, it's pretty simple, too — like, respect people and —

(Applause)

I hug people, I'm an affectionate person and is there a phenomenon in the world of you innocently hug someone in a company and someone takes it the wrong way and there's a misunderstanding? Of course. That's a thing that can happen and it's always been a thing that can happen, but it really is not related to what we are talking about here with this reporting and this movement. And the two should no be confused.

(Applause)

TB: So — Thank you.

I think that if men in a company — and again, specifically talking about men and women for a minute — if men in a company are saying, "Well, we're scared now. We don't want to be alone with women," that's a place where HR professionals have to come in and reshape that and take a moment to say, "This is not what we're going to do." We're not going to penalize women and allow rollbacks on years of progress because you don't know to keep your penis in your pants when you're having a meeting.

(Laughter)

Like, I've never gone into a meeting where I had to be prepped beforehand, like, "Don't touch anybody's breasts."

(Laughter)

You know, that's never happened. And I don't think a man goes into a meeting with another man — you don't go in and the guy's not like, "Hey, guy, don't touch this guy's butt, OK?"

(Laughter)

You don't have that happening man-to-man, so if you understand women as human beings and you respect people's human dignity, and if you set a culture of that in your company and start from that place, the solution shouldn't be "Throw the whole thing away," right? "Forget it, no more meetings with women." Because that says to me, "I don't have self-control" and men should be offended by that, too — this idea that they don't have self-control and they just go, "Oh, look at the women!"

(Laughter)

"Women everywhere! I gotta —"

(Laughter)

It's insane to me. And I think it's really important in this moment that we shift the narrative about this movement. We have a very unique opportunity to have a culture shift. We haven't reached that point yet, but we are so close. If we start having conversations now — we're having conversations now that will derail this whole moment and the window of opportunity will close. And I use this example often but I think it drives home the point. I'm sure there's somebody in here from Facebook or Twitter and all the rest of that, but on social media, I think Facebook specifically, in the first 24 hours that Me Too went viral, there were something like 12 million impressions — 12 million engagements with the hashtag #MeToo. In 24 hours ... OK? Every one of those hashtags is a human being. Every one of those hashtags is a person who had the wherewithal to come forward and tell their story, to unearth this thing that they've been holding in the pit of their stomach for God knows how long, right? Every one of those persons represents somebody with courage. And if we had something else happen in the world where 12 million people in 24 hours got some infectious disease — some communicable disease that spread like wildfire like one of those movies — we would have — all of our conversations would be focused on finding a cure. We would be talking about "How did we get here? How do we stop this and how do we make sure it never happens again?" But right now, our national conversation — our global conversation is "Can we hug in the age of Me Too?" "How do we date now that Me Too is here?" Imagine saying that if it were a disease and we were like, "Well, I don't know who to date now because everybody got that disease."

(Laughter)

And if somebody said that to you, you'd be like, "What's wrong with you? People are dying." And I think that we don't see that enough. Sexual violence causes a certain kind of death in our body. These are people who are standing up and talking about the hardest thing that ever happened to them, and we are conflating it with all kinds of other nonsense, and if we keep going in that direction and derailing the real conversation, and not centering the survivors who are standing up, we're going to miss this opportunity and it's going to be the most horrific shame that we have ever carried — I think.

(Applause)

AG: So as we wrap up, is there anything else you'd like to say about how to solve this problem once and for all?

TB: Good luck — No, I'm just playing.

(Laughter)

AJ: I do think that examining our unconscious bias is really important. I think that being familiar with data across gender studies is powerful. We bring with us so much internalized misogyny and patriarchy, as Tarana was pointing out. There's this little study, and it's just an anecdote but it's really helpful, so that we can remember what we're grappling with. Shelley Correll at Stanford did a study on gender-blind hiring, and some folks who were going to be — they created a false résumé for a real position, and it was for police chief. And the folks who were in the hiring, decision-making level said, "We value education a little bit more than we value field experience. That's the kind of qualified candidate for which we're looking." So they sent in a male candidate who had more education than experience. They thought he was great. They sent in a female candidate, and suddenly they reversed the criteria by which they wanted to do the hiring. When it was a female candidate with the same résumé, they decided they wanted more field experience than education. So our gender bias runs really deep and we all have to unearth it individually in order for it to be barfed up, collectively —

(Laughter)

I was trying to think of some other word but that's what came up —

(Laughter)

Because it is messy; it is messy.

RF: You know, I saw firsthand, as I mentioned, while reporting this story, the perils of the systems that you all champion failing at a company. The moment you see anyone in your chain of command lying about whether someone has had HR violations, or pushing you to not act on something, you all have an opportunity to say, "Hey this doesn't smell right," and stand up and really make yourself heard. And I understand the reasons why people don't do that. I know you've got families to support and there's a lot on the line, and you can feel very alone in a large system, but these are things that do come to light eventually and the people who stand up are heroes. They're important. And I was desperate, as someone trying to get the truth out about this, for each one of those people who would stand up. More importantly, I know every single survivor who put everything on the line to speak was desperate for those people who would stand up. I had a conversation with someone who was in a larger, corporate system and said to me in the midst of all of that, "I'm just a cog in the system, you know? I don't know what I can do." And I said, "No, you don't understand. You are a formal part of the chain of command on this. If you say something, it creates an awkward position for other people trying to cover this up. That could be everything to me right now."

(Applause)

TB: I really believe in values. I believe in commitment and I believe in values. And mostly I believe in it because it helps me in my decision-making. And so at a very, very early age — at 14 — I made a commitment to social justice — it's a long story, but I did — and I decided this is the life that I wanted to live. And along that work, a couple of years later, I had to make a value judgment about something and I felt very lost, and at that point, I said, "Well, let me think about what my values are." Actually, it was when I was having my daughter. I was like, "I need to understand what my values are." And so for the last twenty-something years at the very least, I've had a set of values that have not steered me wrong, and so when things get difficult, it's the place that I dig into, right? And I think companies that have values and who hire people who are invested in those values and don't just, you know, give you lip service in the interview, like, "Oh, integrity, da da da, da da da," like, show and prove that they really do believe in these values and your values align, it's really helpful so that when you are faced with hard decisions, you have a place, a well to dig into that will guide you and steer you, and so I really, really believe in values, because then I can say, "I want to, but it's against my values." And I don't have to do anything else with that, right? And people can do with that what they will and I can sleep at night and I feel comfortable, and I think that's translatable to companies and, you know, whoever.

The other thing, I think, is in this moment, the thing that I feel all the time is like, "Hurry up and take your time," right? I do feel like there's a sense of urgency in this moment because we have this unique opportunity we haven't seen before, so I would encourage companies to seize this moment and hurry up and evaluate what's happening in your company. Hurry up and listen to the employees and listen to the people around you and take heed to what you're hearing and seeing, but take your time in institutionalizing processes and ideas and whatever it takes to change the culture in your company because you want long-standing — we want sustainable, long-standing change to happen, so don't put Band-Aids on it. Take your time and do the kind of things that will last for decades to come so when our young people — grandchildren, whatever — come up, they have this whole other reality.

(Applause)

AG: As I listen to the three of you talk today, it reminds me of a term that psychologists use often. It's called intergenerational buffering and it's the idea of saying, look, there may be cycles of abuse and assault and violence that have been perpetrated for generations, but all it takes is one person or a small group of people to stand up and say, "This ends here, this ends now," and the three of you collectively have done that. I want to thank you for the extraordinary work you've done.

(Applause)

WorkLife is hosted by me, Adam Grant. The show is produced by TED with Transmitter Media and Pineapple Street Media. Our team includes Colin Helms, Gretta Cohn, Gabrielle Lewis, Dan O'Donnell, Angela Cheng and Janet Lee. This bonus episode was produced by Ann Hepperman and Max Linsky.

Thanks for listening. If you liked what you heard, rate and review the show. It helps people find us. And one more thing — I just got back from the TED conference, where we ran a workshop on the future of work. Stay tuned for highlights from that in our next bonus episode, where Malcolm Gladwell is joining me

for a wide-ranging discussion about work life.

(Music)