SERVICES
OUR PROCESS AND SERVICES

We use a model that challenges patterns of power and empowers individuals EQUALLY

If the opportunity to create an equitable workplace community resonates with you, we would love to hear more about the internal culture and tailor a plan for your specific needs.
Discovering coachable blind spots & unconscious bias internally
Identifying opportunities of change through surveys and assessments
Building internal capacity and empathy
Magnifying the Unheard Voices
Shifting cultural attitudes from transactional to transformational
ABOUT US

Who are the unheard voices within your organization?

The reality is that most organizations are challenged in this area or simply don’t know where to begin when trying to create an equitable workplace.
Actionable Conversations help organizations create safe containers for people to have difficult conversations that result in action.
If the opportunity to create an equitable workplace community resonates with you, we would love to hear more about the internal culture.

There is so much discord in the world. How do you turn that discord into positive, actionable results?
Actionable Conversations starts with people. We help organizations have difficult conversations that turn into action.
To learn more, let’s find time to chat.
TEAM

Michael Henderson

Founder and CEO


Michael is the founder and CEO of Actionable Conversations, a global leadership, consensus building, and organizational development firm serving the University of Texas at Austin, US Department of State, and hundreds of other organizations. He is also a researcher & lecturer in the School of Design and Creative Technologies in University of Texas at Austin.
Michael has the ability to cross geographical, racial, and socioeconomic boundaries to solve complex problems.
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Jaimy Rippe

Facilitator


Jaimy is a international tax associate at a top global audit firm where she acts in both business and legal capacities. While earning her Juris Doctorate at a U.S. legal institution, Jaimy worked in the private sector, the United Nations, and with international NGOs both on-ground and remotely for Pan-African sustainable development.

Ms. Rippe has a strong interest and vast experience engaging in discussions with judicial leaders. In addition, she believes the best approach to sustainable development that is consistent with the local laws and needs of the target population without an excessive imposition of Westernized beliefs. Jaimy also continues to act as a foreign consultant for African entrepreneurs seeking capital. She is especially passionate about ensuring an equitable seat at the table for the development, expansion and financial opportunities of female, African/Black-owned businesses on a global scale.

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Larry Graham Jr.

Leader and Project Manager


As a talented leader in federal project management, Larry Graham utilizes his diverse experiences from the U.S. Navy, Morehouse college, and the U.S. Census Bureau in building a balanced perspective and the ability to shepherd vision into reality. His empathetic approach to collaboration fosters consensus building for the communities he impacts – across discipline and geography.

Whether implementing a marketing strategy for a social media company in South Africa or overseeing the $40 million budget of a division focused on the research and dissemination of social, housing, and demographic data, Larry brings a thorough and disciplined approach to achieving outcomes. Larry is driven by principles of equality, independence, and innovation, and his professional and academic success is balanced by his good nature and easy-going attitude.
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Moritz Bretling

Researcher, Communicator, Programmer


Moritz is an independent researcher, writer, programmer, and – above all – communicator. With experience spanning industries like alternative education, digital marketing, and blockchain, he has worked with dozens of individuals and organizations like Holochain, Exosphere, and Minicircle to better articulate their missions and translate them into robust operational structures.

His approach to dealing with complex problems combines the process-oriented methods of software development with the human-oriented skills of storytelling and peer learning at scale.

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Ernesto Rodriguez

Consultant


Ernesto Rodriguez has 40 years of experience in emergency medical services including fire service, statewide, private sector, and municipal third service models. Ernesto most recently served as EMS Chief at Austin-Travis County EMS in Austin Texas. Chief Rodriguez holds a bachelors degree in Emergency Management Administration from West Texas A&M University and a master’s degree in Ministry from Liberty University.

Chief Rodriguez completed training through the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and is an Improvement Advisor specializing in emergency medical services. He also served on the Technical Expert Panel of the EMS Agenda 2050 project. As one of ten members of the Agenda 2050 project, Chief Rodriguez is playing a pivotal role, along with experts from across the nation, in developing the future vision of the EMS industry. In his free time, Ernesto plays his guitars and builds furniture and crafts in his wood shop. He enjoys spending time with his wife and children.
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Alex St. Urbain

Consultant


Alex St. Urbain is a Global Consumer Engagement Manager at the Estée Lauder Companies. He is an experienced, innately curious, and detail-obsessed International Luxury Marketing professional. Combining strategic and analytical business acumen with a love for innovation and go-to-market execution.

 Previous roles include diverse Global, Consumer, Creative, and Executional Marketing positions at the Estee Lauder Companies, Porsche Cars North America and Ronald Mcdonald House Charities among others.

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Michael
Henderson

Researcher Lecturer

is a visiting researcher & lecturer in the School of Design and Creative Technologies in University of Texas at Austin. He also is the founder and managing director of Actionable Conversations, a global leadership, consensus building, and organizational development firm serving the University of Texas at Austin, US Department of State, and hundreds of other organizations. He has the ability to cross geographical, racial, and socioeconomic boundaries to solve complex problems.

Moritz
Bretling

Consultant

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Larry
Graham Jr.

Consultant

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Justin
Snyder

Consultant

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Actionable Conversations is your future to building equitable communities.
We help organizations have difficult conversations that result in action.
To learn more, let’s find time to chat.
Actionable Conversations is your future to building equitable communities.
We help organizations have difficult conversations that result in action.
To learn more, let’s find time to chat.
STATISTICS
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Growing Demand: 67% of job seekers consider workplace diversity an important factor when considering employment opportunities, and more than 50% of current employees want their workplace to do more to increase diversity.(Glassdoor)
Impact: Beyond changing national demographics, why are workers seeking more diverse and inclusive workplaces? Because 45% of American workers experienced discrimination and/or harassment in the past year. (Gallup)

Female Involvement: eBay At eBay, 42% of employees are women. In 2011, they started the Women’s Initiative Network to encourage women to continue working at eBay until they moved into leadership roles. The program includes an annual summit to bring together the company’s female leaders and its senior executives for networking and professional development. It appears to have worked, as the number of women in leadership doubled to hit the 28% recently reported.

Buzzfeed In October 2014, BuzzFeed’s Editor-in-Chief, Ben Smith, published stats on diversity within BuzzFeed’s editorial team and the company at large. Ben said he made the numbers public to keep the company accountable to its employees, readers, and peers. According to Smith’s blog post about diversity at BuzzFeed, improving the diversity of the team is a priority because it will allow BuzzFeed to reach more readers, hire the best people, and produce higher quality work.

Etsy For Etsy, gender diversity in its team is important to product success, since 80% of its customers are female. The company focused training up junior female developers. Together with Yammer and 37 Signals, Etsy funded grants for women to join a summer Hacker School (now called The Recurse Center) program to learn to code. The three-month program was held at Etsy’s offices and was balanced between male and female participants.

Higher representation of women in C-suite level positions results in 34% greater returns to shareholders. (Fast Company)

Current State
78% of employees who responded to a Harvard Business Review (HBR) study said they work at organizations that lack diversity in leadership positions. (Harvard Business Review) According to a 2015 McKinsey report, companies in the top quarter for racial/ethnic diversity are 35% more likely to surpass peers, while those in the same bracket for gender diversity are 15% more likely to do the same. (McKinsey)
OUR WORK

On Juneteenth, University of Texas at Austin students released a letter and video demanding change. The Assistant Dean of the School of Design and Creative Technologies immediately asked us to get involved and help. Our expertise is developing equitable communities.

Over the next several months we led a series of 4 workshops, 20 crafted Actionable Conversations discussions, 5 strategy sessions with faculty, students and staff. These insights created new hiring practices that are resulted in hiring 4 new faculty members.

USEFUL TIPS

Our company helps organizations have difficult conversations which leads to actionable next steps, a tailored comprehensive plan, and solutions to work on. We bring diverse groups together to talk, understand each other and come up with solutions.

We’ve crafted a series of structured research plans & conversation starters to diffuse situations and get everyone at ease. From there we dive into organized problem solving synthesis exercises. These lead to actionable takeaways. Our method has proved to work over and over

We are actively engaging organizations to create an equitable community by bringing stakeholders together. Our first product and service was offered as “Actionable Conversations.”

Subsequently, we’ve led a series of workshops with scholars at the university level that resulted in briefing all the department chairs throughout the school. This resulted in developing a distinct series of anti-racism & equitable community strategy sessions for entire faculty and staff. We worked tirelessly to refine reflections, craft qualitative & quantitative research methods, and design sprints that resulted in a strategic roadmap of tangible goals for administrative participation and long-term adoption.

OUR PARTNERS
TESTIMONIALS
  • I have had the honor of working with Michael [via Actionable Conversations] for the last several years. He has been essential in helping our school transform by structuring difficult conversations about racism. These conversations have yielded concrete actions to improve our student, staff and faculty experiences.
    Michael’s ability to dive into uncomfortable subjects and have substantive conversations that results in actions is impressive. He has worked with all different types of people, staff, student and faculty. He unites them and brings them together for a common goal.
    Doreen Lorenzo
    Assistant Dean at University of Texas, School of Design and Creative Technology.
CONTACT

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CONTACT

Frequently Asked Questions

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