The Most Viewed LinkedIn Profile In The World with Candice Galek and Cultural Diversity Training with Dr. H. Sam Coy and Dr. Chris Lassiter

Candice Galek is a self-taught young female entrepreneur. After going viral as having the most viewed LinkedIn profile in the world, she began interviewing influential business leaders in sharing her experiences via her Inc. column, Quest for Knowledge. Some of her guests include Seth Godin, Gary V, Simon Sinek, Tim Ferriss. Candice shares how she built Bikini Luxe from scratch, growing her bootstrap business while learning life lessons the hard way by trial and error.

 

Our ability to understand cultural diversity and different issues allows for us to step out of that narrow-minded view and to have a more of a global perspective as to how the world really works and what it’s like. This is something that Dr. H. Sam Coy, president of Coy Consulting Group, and Dr. Chris Lassiter, CEO for Coy Consulting Group, always take part in. Dr. Coy and Dr. Lassiter share their back stories and talk about the work they do on cultural diversity and sensitivity.

TTL 292 | Cultural Diversity

 

I’m so glad you joined me because I have Candice Galek, Dr. Sam Coy, and Dr. Chris Lassiter. Candice is the Founder of Bikini Luxe. She’s a Forbes 30 Under 30. Dr. Sam Coy and Chris Lassiter are the President and the CEO of Coy Consulting Group and they deal with a lot of minority and diversity issues.

Listen to the podcast here:

The Most Viewed LinkedIn Profile In The World with Candice Galek

I am here with Candice Galek who is a self-taught young female entrepreneur. After going viral as the Most Viewed LinkedIn Profile in the World, she began interviewing influential business leaders in sharing her experiences via her Inc. column, Quest for Knowledge. Some of her guests include Seth Godin, Gary Vee, Simon Sinek, and Tim Ferriss. She’s built Bikini Luxe from scratch growing her bootstrap business while learning life lessons the hard way by trial and error. It’s so nice to have you here, Candice.

Thank you for having me, Diane.

I’ve had a lot of Forbes 30 Under 30s on my show and you made it into that group.

Thank you very much. I didn’t realize what a thing it was until my mom was like, “What have you done?”

You hear the name Forbes and it’s huge worldwide. It’s amazing. I’ve been fortunate to work with Forbes. I was the MBA Program Chair for the Forbes School of Business and I worked with Steve at some of the events and things. It’s such an impressive group of people that they have there. When you get recognized in a group like that, it’s important. I’ve had so many of you on the show. It’s hard to get on that list and you have to be bright and have done a lot of amazing things. I want to hear your background of what led to this interest to be such a young entrepreneur. Was this a family thing that you learned how to do this or did you just go off in a different direction of your own?

I want to start by saying that the Forbes family is amazing and it’s something that you don’t know until you hear a part of it. Everyone is so friendly and accommodating and hopeful. Making that list, they put me into this group of people who are all like-minded and it was such a great experience. Every year, when it comes out I’m always so excited about everyone that’s joined the group now. I’m like, “Welcome to the team guys.” Bikini Luxe is not something that was a family business. My mom is a police officer as well as my stepdad. I created my first company Bikini Luxe out of necessity. I wanted to create something for myself that would consistently pay the bill and then I put security with and then I could grow and I felt my hard work could be worth something at the end of the day. I don’t even know why honestly. I was like, “I’m going to create a website and sell things online” and my friends were like, “Everyone’s doing that.” I had a couple of friends who had their own swimwear line here in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. I said, “If you give me the chance to sell your products online, the worst-case scenario is you make a little bit of money off of me but the best-case scenario we create a working relationship and it becomes something.” It was my mission about years ago to make this happen and I just put all of my time and effort into it.

There are very few companies that can do that. It’s challenging to continue to be successful because everybody’s trying to get into these online businesses where you can order things. It’s not as easy as people think it is. There’s a lot to it. How did you learn the business aspect of it? Wanting to do things and doing it are two different things.

A lot of what it is is being a self-starter and having the urge to learn as much as possible. I come across a lot of people who are like, “Can you tell me how to do what you’ve done?” Sometimes in the past, I’ve given them a full-on outline of how to get started and they were just like, “That sounds too much work.” A lot of people start businesses and think that it’s going to be easy but it’s not. A lot of it was learning how to do things on my own and taking the time to search out things online on Google and just making an effort to absorb that knowledge and put it into play. That’s something that a lot of people overlook because they think that they have to hire someone to consult them how to do it right off the bat or they need a mentor right away and they don’t think for themselves. What I did was I watched every YouTube video, I’ve read every article, and every blog post even the simplest thing. How do you write a product description? I’ve read everything I possibly could and wanted to do it the right way and that helped.

I love that since I wrote a book about curiosity and that your Inc. column was called Quest for Knowledge. You have quite a high level of curiosity like. You would do that same thing. If I want to figure out how to do the statistical analysis for my assessment that I created, I watched everything I could on how to do that. There are a lot of people who do that. They try to go out and learn everything they can. Why do you think you’re that way? Is your family that way? Where did you get that?

I started thinking about this not too long ago. When I turned 30, that’s when you start questioning yourself and your upbringing and your parents all these things. I was raised by a single mother and she worked hard. Sometimes I had a lot of free time. In the ‘90s, kids were outside. We were playing. We were climbing trees. We were in the dirt. I was also raised by my grandmother. She took the time to give me freedom. She let me run outside. I had to be back when it was dark and that was it. My upbringing of being able to learn things on my own and not being overly sheltered helped to develop this curiosity and willingness to make my own way.

You hear about helicopter moms or dads that are just right there making sure you do exactly this and exactly that. Sometimes that can squelch what we want people to achieve and that’s what you’re saying, that ability to figure out things on your own. What you’ve done is fascinating. As I said you had this Inc. column called Quest for Knowledge. You’ve interviewed a lot of interesting people. I mentioned some of them. The four I mentioned are four that I haven’t even interviewed and I’ve interviewed a lot of people. Seth Godin, Gary Vee, Simon Sinek, and Tim Ferriss, what did you learn from interviewing all these people that you’ve had a great opportunity to chat with?

First and foremost, I want to say that my column was so interesting to me because the hardest part was choosing a name for it. I’m always trying to figure things out, so I came up with this Quest for Knowledge thing and I was lucky that no one else is using it. I thought, “What could I offer people besides my own opinion?” I injected that in there as well. Everyone is obsessed with the faces of the industries and the big names. I was like, “What if I could talk to them?” Here I was just budding entrepreneur who just luckily made the Forbes 30 Under 30 list and landed this column because I had gone viral on social media. I wasn’t a study journalist or anything. I was like, “Why would these people want to talk to me?” I was like, “That’s a bad way to think about it. Why wouldn’t they want to talk to me?” I realized that in order to get influential people to talk to me, I had to make it worthwhile. I’ll just focus on reaching out to them when they needed something. They have a new book out or a new product, they’re more willing to discuss things with me. I then leaned on my social media following and I said, “What do you want to go? What haven’t you read in other interviews? What questions would you ask the people?” At times, I got good questions and other times I got a mediocre, run-of-the-mill question. I would then use those to talk to them. The conversations that I had with these people like Deepak Chopra were mind-blowing.

What did you ask him that blew your mind?

I did a lot of the questions that people had recommended but we just talked about alternative medicine. I even asked him about his experience in microdosing LSD when he was younger and he was open about it. He was cool. We’re just trying to have fun.

I would want to know what he thought of the movie Love Guru that made fun of him but in a nice way and he probably thought it was funny, but I’d like to know.

He’s very funny so he might have liked it.

You’ve had great things said about you by some of the names I mentioned. Seth Godin said, “I’m a little star struck by Candice. She’s built quite a thing. Most of the people that impress me have built something, who have developed a point-of-view, who said, ‘Here, I made this.’ That’s hard to do.” To get his attention, that’s a nice compliment and you have done a lot for so young. Does it make it hard? You’ve already achieved all this. Where can you go next? Does it overwhelm you sometimes?

It doesn’t overwhelm me. My personality is naturally like, “I’ve done this, now what?” It’s difficult to live up to because it doesn’t allow me to enjoy the moment. I’m constantly thinking about the next thing. Something that I’ve been focusing on which is living in the moment, enjoying it, not worrying too much about what comes next. One thing I have realized is that with the small success that I’ve had this far, it does make things more difficult. We now live in a time of social media and other people’s expectation and judgments. For me, I feel like I have all these ideas and projects that I want to bring to light but I’m terrified of putting it out there without them being up to par and see what people expect.

Take a look at what people are doing right and figure out how you can improve upon that. Click To Tweet

I’m looking at your picture on your LinkedIn profile. That’s pretty brave. You put yourself out there.

LinkedIn has always been a risky move for me, but it turned out well.

You’ve done some other things that were very open and out there. You wrote an open letter to Elon Musk after Hurricane Maria asking him to help with the Puerto Rico aid and he later donated $250,000. Did you ever talk to him about that? Did you ever make the connection?

Elon Musk is a hot topic all the time. When everything happened in Puerto Rico, I was there for the hurricane and got to see firsthand how everything went down and had a flight after flight canceled. We had no power and it was bad. What I didn’t see being there was any actual help from anyone except there is one chef called Chef José Andrés. He came to town and he came in with a team of people and cooked hot food day in and day out and just fed everyone for free. I thought that was amazing that he could make that happen for the locals. When it came to electricity, once you leave the main tourist area of San Juan, the locals were left with that for a while. I wrote an open letter to Elon. It was about two weeks after the hurricane had hit and I thought if anyone could do it, Elon can because he’s doing all these random monumental stuffs. I send him an open letter because I know with Tesla and all these different things he has going on, he has the capabilities to make things like that happen.

I asked him to donate Powerwall batteries and get things up and running again. I didn’t ask him to donate money more so maybe products and time and the team to do things but what happened was on LinkedIn within twelve hours after that went live, I had already seen almost 30 people from these different companies had read the article between SpaceX and Tesla. That next morning every news outlet came out saying, “Elon Musk has donated Powerwall batteries and $250,000 to Puerto Rico.” It was just weird timing. The hurricane was two weeks prior to that. Nothing had happened on his end and the article goes live and a few hours later it’s happening. I feel like someone on their team saw the article and maybe said, “This is a great idea let’s do it,” but it’s never something that I got credit for.

It’s interesting that you would have such a presence on LinkedIn and I mentioned that you had the most viewed LinkedIn profile in the world. What led to that being the most viewed?

Social media platform has an algorithm and what I’ve done successfully for Bikini Luxe is to utilize every different platform and try to figure out what makes them tick. That was how I got started in the beginning. I was figuring out different sales platform and being able to sell a lot of products. Then reinvesting that money into more stuff. That’s how I got my start and I did the same thing on LinkedIn. I figured out that creating a conversation then led to more people seeing your content which lead to more people commenting on it and it just kept spiraling out of control. This is prior to Microsoft owning it. My main goal was to create a conversation and whether people commented positively or negatively or whatever it may be, it then showed my post to all of their connections.

It was just about creating hot topics and utilizing other people’s network. I was able to do that steadily for quite a while and it got so bad that the platform couldn’t handle the amount of traffic that I was giving. It just kept breaking down on me. They gave me a follow button which not everyone had at the time so people would follow me instead of connecting because it was just too much. That’s just what it was. It was creating an interesting conversation that the platform hadn’t seen before. Selling swimwear is a business and it is a business network so why wouldn’t it be allowed to be done there? I used it differently and then I was trying to sell products directly to the users. It wasn’t a failed platform if you think of advertising. That was unique as well. I’ve always liked LinkedIn but we do have a love-hate relationship.

You said that you get over a million views on your LinkedIn post. That’s a lot. You’re up there above Richard Branson, Tony Robbins, Bill Gates, and a lot of people want to do that. What advice would you give them? Do you have one major thing you think that people are doing wrong that you could tell them to stop doing or something that they need to be doing?

The platform has changed a lot over the year, but I would say be curious. Take a look at what people are doing right and figure out how you can improve upon that. There’s a slew of different people out there who are doing well right now. It’s because they are creating unique content. They’re asking questions. They’re engaging with their connections. Everyone expects that they just are going to take a minute in their time, read and post an article, not put any spin on it and it’s just going to go wild. That’s just not the case. It takes time and effort quite honestly. I would just focus on creating a conversation and then conversing with people within the comment. Don’t just leave I’m hanging like they’re talking to nobody.

It’s challenging because not only is there LinkedIn. You’ve got Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and everything else that yours is a very visual business. How do you keep up with all of that? Do you find it hard to focus? Do you put all your focus on LinkedIn or do you try to spread it out? Where do you stand on that?

TTL 292 | Cultural Diversity
Cultural Diversity: In order to get influential people to talk to you, you have to make it worthwhile and focus on reaching out to them when they needed something.

 

It’s great to be well-rounded. One thing that I have learned over the years is that there’s not a single platform that you can put all of your effort and trust into that will be successful three or five years later. At the beginning of the Bikini Luxe, the bread and butter websites that I was focusing on are bringing in sales, now they bring us maybe one order per month. It’s not for lack of trying. It’s just the algorithms changed and situations changed. The products available on the market are different now. It’s great to be well-rounded and when something is working for you, focus on that because you have to ride the wave while it’s there.

I found it interesting that the Forbes 30 under 30 tend to be heavier on other platforms. Not just the Forbes 30 or 30 but just the Millennial and younger generations aren’t as big on LinkedIn as maybe Twitter and Facebook and Instagram. Are you finding that your following is all ages or are you more focused on the younger groups?

It is very based on the platform. A lot of people never thought about LinkedIn and they didn’t treat it as a social networking site. For the longest time, they had an older demographic. Now, more Millennials are engaging on the platform as well because they have heard all these articles like, “People are getting great engagement. Look what they’re doing over here on LinkedIn.” A lot of them have flocked to the network but still, don’t put as much effort into it because many of them are entrepreneurs or are already secure in their position. They still view it as that site that they would go if they were looking for a job. You should utilize every platform for what it’s good at and how it helps you. For me, as a business owner, my goal is always to network with interesting people and make money. If I can’t do those two things, that platform is not going to get my attention.

What do you think is going to be the biggest platform for you for 2019?

Everything changes. At one point, Facebook was good for us and another point Instagram were killing it. It’s just so hard. What I would like is I would like a new platform because I’ve been using the ones that are here for a couple of years now and I’m bored. I want a new challenge.

Maybe that’s your next company. You’re so good at it.

I did hear that Sophia Amoruso from Girlboss which creating a women’s only social network and that’s going to be interesting. I will be on that platform.

Education is the most powerful weapon which we can use to change the world. - Nelson Mandela Click To Tweet

There is always going to be a room for new platforms and things are going to change. You’ve got a great story and I know you wrote that Lil Jon said that you need to write a book about your life. Are you going to do that?

It’s on the list of things to do. I went as far as buying index cards and writing out little tidbits that should be in there. The book is a work in progress. I suffer from that problem that a lot of creative types have where I have to new idea every day. I get excited about it. I’m like, “This is going to be the next big thing” and then I spend two hours doing all my research and I’m like, “What am I doing? I have other things I should be focusing on.” Remaining focused is my biggest goal for 2018 because I do have a lot of projects that I’m obsessed with bringing to life but I know that everything has its time and place and I need to focus on what’s at hand.

You’ve done something. You have an impressive background and I knew you’d be very interesting to talk to as every other Forbes 30 under 30 has been on my show. I am so glad that you were able to join me. Thank you. I would love it if you’d share how people can reach you and find out more about you.

Thank you so much. You can reach out to me on LinkedIn that’s my most recognized platform but also on Twitter, it’s @BikiniGeek which is me. The website is BikiniLuxe.com. If you end up going on vacation, you can check it out.

Thank you so much, Candice. It was fun having you on the show.

Cultural Diversity Training with Dr. H. Sam Coy and Dr. Chris Lassiter

I am here with Dr. H. Sam Coy who is the president of Coy Consulting Group and Dr. Christopher Lassiter who’s the CEO for Coy Consulting Group. That group is certified as a minority and women business enterprise. Chris also has a new book How to Change the World in 20 Minutes. I’m very anxious to talk to both of you. Welcome.

Thank you so much we’re excited to be on with you.

Thank you for the lovely introduction.

You two have a very interesting company. I was looking at some of the stuff. You have been featured at just about everywhere. Dr. Coy, I want to start with you. It’s a great background that you have because you’ve been awarded by People Magazine and The Boston Globe. What have you done that has gotten much attention? Can you just give me a little background?

It’s interesting because when I first started out working in the city of Boston, I first started out working with juveniles. My background is criminal justice. My undergrad degree is in criminal justice. Going off of the fact that my dad was a police officer in the City of Boston, I had some direction as to what I wanted to do in life. I was inspired by the work that he has done and he as an undercover officer in that city, changed the makeup of the community there. They suffered tremendously back in the late ‘80s early ‘90s from the crack epidemic. When that hit, drug gangs and violence and things of that nature had moved in. He took a commitment for himself and for the community to go in and clean up that mess and he paid the ultimate price doing that. I was inspired by the work and the dedication that he had around making a difference. I went into criminal justice with the same aspiration to be a person that could get in here and make a difference. I started in the business working with juveniles and I had then went off to law school to get my law degree and became a prosecutor. Down the same path that my dad was down on the side of law enforcement, I wanted to make a difference.

I saw that a lot of the young kids that we were working with were coming from such awful situations. Much like myself, I could identify and relate giving my own upbringing coming up from Worcester in Massachusetts. I’ve had my own experiences growing up in poverty and around drugs, guns, gangs, and violence. It inspired me to want to help other young people go as far as they could as I had modeled just in my own experience. I was working with a lot of different young people in group homes. First starting out with young men, young women between the ages of thirteen and eighteen. As that work commenced and the positive outcomes that we were having, I was picked up and notarize about the good work that went on. That’s why I got introduced to the People Magazine and their Heroes Among Us Award and fell into that.

My education didn’t stop there. I just felt it was important enough for me to be able to continue the journey in my education because this is something that I knew to be a way out for me. I wanted to make sure that whatever message that I had delivered, I could deliver to young people and older individuals as well. That it doesn’t stop and you’re always on a path to learning and to making a difference into improving and making everybody’s situation a little bit better if you could. That’s where it landed. It’s a work in nonprofit for you know many years now and it hasn’t stopped. My business is about making sure that nonprofits in these communities stay open because our youth need them. The population needs it and it’s the very fabric that holds our communities together. It’s been my experience.

TTL 292 | Cultural Diversity
Cultural Diversity: There’s not a single platform that you can put all of your effort and trust into that will be successful three or five years later.

 

You’ve got an interesting story and I could see why Dr. Chris would be interested and be the CEO for your group. Chris, tell me a little bit about how you came part of Coy Consulting and your background because you have an interesting background as well.

The quick backstory is we met at a school event in Paris, France. She was the talk of the event and I was a shadow, a fly on the wall. We had an opportunity to speak on the last day and exchanged emails as with most of the other members that were in attendance but there was something unique about our situation. Her doctoral research was in nonprofit sustainability. My doctoral research is in for-profit sustainability. We kept in touch. About two years later, we found an opportunity to do some work together. Solely for the purpose of helping to grow Coy Consulting Group but also to lend new landscape of entrepreneurship and new creative business model. It’s something that the for-profit industry is taking advantage of. There’s a great opportunity for nonprofit organizations to grab a hold of some of those business models in order to stay open and remain viable. Especially with the political landscape changing hands and going in very different directions. It’s important that these organizations know how to stand on their own too. That’s how we join forces here at Coy Consulting Group.

It’s an interesting company that you have. I was also looking at your background, Sam. You said you were raised around drugs, guns, gangs, and violence. You mentioned your father and his work inspired the movie In Too Deep. Who played your father in that movie?

Omar Epps played the role of the character of my father. The names of the characters in that particular movie, In Too Deep, was the actual names that were used in the undercover operation that was implemented. J. Reid was my father’s undercover name and they implement that into the movie incorporated event. There were a lot of pieces that went into that movie that I knew about before the movie even came. The movie came out back in 1999.

That’s got to be wild to watch your dad’s story on the screen. Was it very accurate?

It was very accurate in terms of the work that went in and the challenges that he faced. What was even more exciting for me is that as I was at Northeastern University in the Criminal Justice Program, a lot of the professors knew about the work that my father had laid down. Not only that, the whole idea around undercover police work. He trained other officers because there was a side to this that you could only imagine that would grant the officers a personal challenge in terms of PTSD, going out and having to remember every lie you told and being in danger every single day. They would train officers based on the work that my father did. I remember sitting in class and the professor was taking attendance and recognizing the name then asking me after class if I had any relation to the late Jeffrey Coy that they’ve known to be a hero in that community.

It isn't until you have a chance to see the other side for yourself that you can determine how good things really can be for you. Click To Tweet

You caught the attention at Northeastern and you went to Northeastern you attended Harvard. You went to some pretty tough schools and you have a quite an interesting background. It’s interesting how much you both are into making a better world and changing things. I know that Chris has got a book How To Change the World in 20 Minutes. Chris, how do you change the world in twenty minutes?

That is the great mystery. One has to read the book to find out. I will give a little bit of a hint and my answer will be the key.

I like that because I wrote a book about curiosity. I’m curious about your book. What are you trying to change about the world?

In short, education is always the tool that’s used in the most powerful way. There’s a quote that I keep on my desk by Nelson Mandela says, “Education is the most powerful weapon which we can use to change the world.” We’re both professors. I also teach at a high school that’s called IDEA High School in Dallas Texas. It’s Innovation, Design and Entrepreneurship Academy. Through education, people afforded the opportunity to close gaps that all of us walk around with personal bias and single worldviews. Those often have been requested to create that will be in effect in the spring of 2019. It’s called The 20/20 on Racism. This has been encouraged and designed to assist with the destruction of the ideals of racism.

There’s just so many instances of issues right now with not just racism but women issues with the #MeToo Movement. There’s so much going on in the world right now and I’m sure so many organizations are looking for help. They avoid the Starbucks issues and all different issues. Is that what you come to for that type of training? What do you do for people at Coy?

We do cultural diversity and cultural sensitivity training. We don’t use those words, but I say that in this instance so that people can identify with it. Little things like diversity and the norm, those are our catchphrases. For example, I would show the history video of the men who built America with John D. Rockefeller and J.P. Morgan and we get about halfway through and I would ask the students, “Where are all the women? Do they not exist?” The basis of how certain cultures exist all the way down to religion. They stem from the speakers more times than not. All the issues going to have the same root and we can get the root, we can allow the basis of our interaction with each other to be based on whether or not we survive off oxygen. We can get to that point. We can move a lot faster into breaking down these make-believe walls of barriers of gender, race, height, stereotypes prejudices, so on and so forth.

I know that when Sam contacted me. She was interested in sharing what you are doing in terms of accomplishments for young people of color. It’s really important to look at who we’re talking to. Do you think that companies need to get diversity training from diverse individuals at times? Are we going to the wrong sources or do we need to get people who experienced what we need to overcome?

Dr. Coy is such a lovely engaging speaker. She does most of the keynotes and I do most of the background training. The approach that’s taken is having diversity training from the majority population sometimes doesn’t hit home. It generally takes someone from the community to speak for their community. No matter how much you study in the book, there are some things about the female body that I’ll never be able to speak to completely. There’s just a body there that doesn’t go away. Inside of the sensitivity training or the cultural training, there is a new norm that has to be adaptive when dealing with certain people. For example, when I first started teaching in secondary school. 85% is the Hispanic population.

TTL 292 | Cultural Diversity
Cultural Diversity: You’re always on a path to learning and to making a difference into improving and making everybody’s situation a little bit better if you could.

 

The Hispanic females by cultural design, they aren’t given the same freedoms to speak for themselves and to ask questions. I would ask a question and look directly at one of my female students and they would sit there and look back and forth almost looking for permission from the other kids to answer the question. I had no clue what that was about until I went and read about it then I learned. From there I was able to still give them opportunities space to speak up but I knew how to do it and that was important. To be able to come from the baseline understanding of what seat they sit in, what their confidence looks like, the green light if you will share the voice. It takes a certain skill set because we are speaking different languages. This is another insight into the book. We believe we all speak English. When we were growing up we had different slang, different terminology, and different definitions for search and the world hasn’t changed much. It’s still going on.

That brings up the world and it makes me think of your story of how you’ve met in Paris. Sam, I’m interested when you were speaking there and when you speak in other locations around the world, how do they differ from how we are in the US? Are we ahead or behind in terms of our ability to understand diversity and different issues like that?

I believe that it has to travel outside the United States and get outside of the four walls to be able to have a global perspective and a global view as to who we are personally and who we are professionally as Americans. I took one of my first trips and I’ve traveled all over the world. I’ve been to maybe fourteen different countries. It wasn’t until I left outside of the United States that I got a chance to see how obnoxious I am as an American. It’s just a level of when you grow up in the United States, it’s almost as if we have this air about us and I’ll speak to my own experience that your expectations are different. If I’ve traveled out to Spain and I’m in Barcelona at a beautiful restaurant the menu is in Spanish and I’m like,” Why it’s not in English?” because you’re not in America.

That expectation is there and it’s not something that you’re immediately aware of until it’s upon you. It allows for you to then step out of that narrow-minded view and to have a more of a global perspective as to how the world works and what it’s like. This is something that I always take part in whenever I leave the United States. It’s to go deep with other cultures. Understand what the other side looks like and be a part of that. It’s so important because then you can have a more of a wider understanding as to how good you have it versus how others may not. It isn’t until you have a chance to see it for yourself that you can determine how good things can be for you.

I was in Italy one time and there’s nothing like being on a trolley. Four out of twenty people are Americans and there are four people complaining about how there’s no AC.

For me, to be able to come back and to talk to my young women of color about my experiences especially with women and young girls who’ve grown up the way I did. It wasn’t something that I was necessarily introduced to, world travel at fifteen years old. We could barely make it out of the projects that we’ve lived. To be able to share that experience and to say, this is important, education is important. Travel is important, because at the end of the day, what you want to do is you want to be well-positioned. This is not something that I found was offered to me. They don’t see enough of a Dr. H. Sam Coy and a Dr. Lassiter. A young African-American female and male who have grown up in the most challenged of situations. Mainly when we see that, we see that as an excuse to fail rather than a motivating factor to succeed. This has been some of my testimony to young people who want to then open up a business and they want to have a voice and be taken seriously in all that. Although it’ll be still hard, I have to go out and get as many degrees as I possibly can become a subject matter expert in all those things just to be able to find a place. Be able to then go back to my young brothers and sisters and say, “This can be done.”

TTL 292 | Cultural Diversity
Cultural Diversity: Understanding what the other side looks like and being a part of that can give you a wider understanding as to how good you have it versus how others may not.

 

It ties in a little of my research for curiosity and the fact of the things that hold people back from asking questions and from doing things is because of their environment. I found four factors that hold people back. Its fear, assumptions, technology, and environment and environment would be a very strong factor for both of you. That it could have gone one way or the other. Some people have a negative environment that’s not the best and then they feel like, “I’m going to prove it that I can do it” and they go that way and other people just let it defeat them. Why do you think you went the direction you went instead of just saying this is just too hard?

The environment is huge. I had every excuse not to go as far as I did. My father with the work that he did, suffered from PTSD. He committed suicide when I was fourteen years old. I was still living in the projects. I was still battling that environment. My mother for a greater part of my childhood was hooked on drugs. I had every reason to not get out of bed. It is a great personal choice. It is a personal choice to be able to say, “I’m going to get up and fight another day.”

Looking back a lot of people wish they had done more. My hope is to keep that spark going to have people realize that this is why I have this voice in my head that tells me I can’t do it. It wasn’t cool in my neighborhood to do this or my friends said that was stupid if I did bad or my parents never wanted me to do anything but this. It’s very challenging and that’s why I’m interested to see what you did to get that positive voice because any time we can share these positive experiences is important.

I’m from Birmingham Alabama and I went back and forth for touring schools. One school predominantly black another school predominately white and I was one of the few kids that started out with white friends. I was able to speak both languages and to speak both sides was something overbridged. One of the things I could speak from experience is that it is definitely heavily tied to experience. You have those kids who grow up in like I did in projects in poverty with people around with low expectations and then so you have low morals, low moral compass, and low ethics. On the other side of town where the experience has only been on their father’s a dentist and mom stays at home and make lunch. Uncles are about the same and aunts are about the same. These kids are ostracized if they want to be musicians or go to school and study art or history. We all suffer from the environment that we come from. If you happen to not fit into the norm, there’s some backlash always. For me, I can only say that my purpose was given by another source. It was internal.

Education is important because, at the end of the day, you want to be well positioned. Click To Tweet

There was not anything around me and my environment that prompted me to not fall into the traps that were laid out. What I had to come through was things like in the second grade, I remember being told by my friends like, “What are you trying to read? What do you think, you’re white?” This is the extent of the information. You have somebody who you know is dealing with an identity crisis when we’re only talking about the comments of a six or seven years old.

You don’t know what kids are hearing and how they’re going to process that information. You are spreading the word that you had their experiences and look at what you may have been able to achieve. You both are very successful both doctors. Congratulations on that. What you’re doing is amazing and a lot of people probably want to know more. They want Chris’s book because they’re very curious about How to Change the World in 20 Minutes.

I just wanted to say we also built educational workshops from the book. The educational workshops are called OIC. It’s Overlearning in Confidence and that’s how we spread the word to the children. It takes the PTA to get together. It takes school district, teachers and anybody can be a voice for it.

Do you have links you’d like to share or how to reach you?

You can reach any of the educational workshops and the book on LassiterAndCo.com and then for Coy Consulting Group, that’s CoyConsultingGroup.com.

Thank you so much for being on the show. I enjoyed meeting you, Sam and Chris. It was an honor to have you on.

We’re blessed to be able to do this. Thank you so much.

What prompted me to bow my head and tilt my head and worked for Dr. Coy is that I did a little research and she’s more formally educated than any president of United States of America.

Thank you both.

I want to thank Candice, Sam, and Chris what a great show. If you’ve missed any past episodes please go to DrDianeHamiltonRadio.com and if you want to know more about the Curiosity Code Book you can go to CuriosityCode.com and to find out more about the Curiosity Code Index, you can find it there as well. I hope you join us for the next episode of Take The Lead radio.

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About Candice Galek

TTL 292 | Cultural DiversityCandice Galek is a self-taught young female entrepreneur. After going viral as the most viewed Linkedin profile in the world, she began interviewing influential business leaders and sharing her experiences via her INC Column “Quest for Knowledge.” Some of her guests include Seth Godin, Gary V, Simon Sinek, Tim Ferriss, and more. She built Bikini Luxe from scratch, growing her bootstrapped business while learning life lessons the hard way: by trial and error.

 

About Dr. H. Sam Coy and Dr. Christopher Lassiter

TTL 292 | Cultural Diversity

Dr. H. Sam Coy is the president of Coy Consulting Group and Dr. Christopher Lassiter is the CEO for Coy Consulting Group. Coy Consulting Group is certified as a minority and woman business enterprise.

 

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