Working toward becoming a better ally and building more inclusive leadership is a constant, ever-evolving and engaged process. Gaby and Jenelle Acosta, the co-hosts and creators of a brand new podcast called The Way We Lead, will explore these issues through the real-world stories and experiences of its guests, a human-centered series that expresses one of the best and perhaps untapped qualities of the United States: its diversity.
The beauty of the podcast is that its creators are also practicing what they preach, embodying both allyship and inclusive leadership in the stories they are choosing to elevate to their audience. For many of us — even when we have the best of intentions or have experienced marginalization ourselves — allyship can feel totally overwhelming. The Way We Lead, or TWWL, will challenge its listeners to push through this by sharing humanistic stories from all around the country.
This sense of overwhelm is something that its hosts know well. “I remember the feeling of sheer panic when I first tried to speak out against casual derogatory remarks made by friends or co-workers,” Jenelle revealed on TWWL’s blog. She wrote about being afraid to speak up, lest the people around her reject her. “Knowing I wasn’t alone gave me the courage to speak up, even if I wasn’t the most eloquent or educated. I think every person working to become a better ally goes through this process at some point, and I want to be there to lift them up when I see them trying.”
TWWL’s mission is simple: “If a single person takes one step closer to becoming a better ally because they listened to this podcast, it will all be worth it for us,” Gaby wrote to BELatina in an email over the weekend. “Because topics of diversity and inclusion are applicable to anyone in any space, our podcast guests will reflect that wide-range of diversity as well. We have an incredible lineup of guests from across a spectrum of identities and industries.” TWWL’s guest roster runs the gamut of expertise, from academics to advocates to business and nonprofit leaders, but the creators emphasized that they aim to reach an audience of not just people in leadership positions but also the everyday person who is open to exploring how to become a more effective ally, especially as we are living through an era where injustice dominates the headlines.
The Way We Lead premieres today, with 45-minute-or-so new episodes coming out every week or two. Their first few episodes are up now on Apple, Buzzsprout, Spotify, and Stitcher, and will be up soon through Apple.