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Interview w/ Bad Ass Diversity Prophet Torin Ellis

Meet Torin Ellis, one bad MFin' diversity bad ass. Buckle-up kids it's about to get lit up in this Nexxt Exclusive podcast!

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Chad: Okay, Joel. Quick question

Joel: Yep.

Chad: What happens when your phone vibrates or your texting alert goes off?

Joel: Dude, I pretty much check it immediately. I bet everyone listening is reaching to check their phones right now.

Chad: Yeah. I know. I call it our Pavlovian dog reflex to text messaging

Joel: Yeah. That's probably why text messaging has a frickin' 97% open rate.

Chad: What?

Joel: They're crazy high candidate response rate within the first hour alone.

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Chad: Wow. So, "How do you get this discount?" you're asking yourself right now.

Joel: Tell them, Chad.

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Announcer: Hide your kids. Lock the doors. You're listening to HR's most dangerous podcast. Chad Sowash and Joel Cheeseman are here to punch the recruiting industry right where it hurts. Complete with breaking news, brash opinion, and loads of snark. Buckle up, boys and girls. It's time for the Chad and Cheese Podcast.

Chad: It's time to do this.

Joel: Ho ho.

Chad: This is Chad Sowash. Today we're going to be talking to Torin Ellis, diversity strategist, published offer. You might have heard him on SiriusXM Radio. He does a little contribution there. Torin's all over the place, man, but he is a diversity stud. Torin, say hi to the listeners, man.

Torin: Ah, that big good morning. We like it. We like it. We like it. And I absolutely appreciate the both of you for giving me some time, some bandwidth. Let's jostle a little bit and have some fun.

Joel: Torin, this is Joel Cheeseman, the cohost of the show. We're meeting for the first time. The name Torin is not a common name. Is there a story behind that?

Torin: No, it's not. Actually it's a Scottish name and it mean's king. And my mother, when she was 18, a lot of people told her that she nor her children, because they were kind of clairvoyant and they figured she'd have multiple kings and queens, and so that said that "Neither you nor your children would be successful." You got to understand that I grew up in a time ... I was born in a time where a black man could not swim in the Atlantic Ocean. I'm talking about a pool in a community. I'm not talking about the YMCA. I'm talking black people could not swim in South Florida in the Atlantic Ocean. And so a lot of her instructors told her that she would never successful. And she said she would start naming der firstborn with a name that had power, and so it means king.

Joel: Was that some undo pressure on you, though, to be a king?

Torin: No, not at all. Absolutely. I felt like ... First of all, I didn't know what it meant until probably 20 years old or so. But no. No pressure whatsoever. I mean, my mother and my father were incredible role models. They were incredible parents. And so they just raised me to be human, if you will. They raised me to try to respect the law and follow directions and do the best that I could. And so that's what we've tried to do. We've made a couple of mistakes, but we're here now. We're good.

Chad: Well, today we're here to talk about diversity. We talk about diversity. A couple of angry white guys, as you'd like to call us, talk about diversity on this show.

Torin: That's right.

Chad: And I thought, let's get somebody who really gets down deep into diversity and let's really ... let's get into the scrum on this one. Let's talk about what needs to happen, what is happening, and all the bullshit talk that's happening out there. So-

Joel: Can I interject-

Chad: Yeah.

Joel: ... because I'm a newbie in this diversity thing?

Torin: Yeah.

Joel: I'd like to hear a definition of diversity from someone who is really knowledgeable about this.

Torin: Oh, it's real simple. For me, it's bringing unknown resources, people, things together and not being afraid to be married, if you will. And just think about that. I don't need a complicated academic definition. It's about just bringing things that are not necessarily normal to be together, bringing cultural insiders, cultural outsiders, bringing them together, and not being afraid to be "married" professionally, socially, communal, if you will. It's bringing stuff together. That's it.

Joel: Got it.

Chad: Getting away from the old, generic, boring bullshit and trying to spice it up.

Joel: Flavor.

Chad: Right?

Joel: Absolutely. Absolutely.

Chad: Right, right? I mean-

Joel: Yes. Absolutely.

Chad: ... diversity of thought. I mean, we talk about backgrounds. So it doesn't matter what kind of background. But we talk about trying to bring that diverse thought in. In most cases, the way that you get that diverse thought is from an individual who is nothing like you, doesn't have the same kind of opinions or ideas, or maybe, in some cases, there are obviously some common grounds. But how do you really excel in being able to drive diversity? And that's always been my thought.

Torin: Well, and, again, when you take it like that ... So I use the phrase cultural insider. On your side, Joel and Chad are cultural insiders, both white men.

Chad: Yep.

Torin: I'm the cultural outsider in this conversation, yet we are still grooving already. Two, three minutes in, we're already in our flow, getting that mojo, and we're about to make an incredible conversation come forth. That's what I'm talking about, just bringing it together and not being afraid to do that. Now, on you all's side, there's still a difference in who you all are. Chad is different than Joel, vice versa. But together, there is a little bit of cultural outsiderness, if you will. But for the most part, you all are cultural insiders. Bringing the two together, outsiders, insiders, and making magic happen.

Chad: So why is it so hard? I mean, we got three guys get on a mic, right, and we start talking and we start the flow, right out of the gate. And you have this sharing of ideas and opinions. Why is it so hard for companies to be able to really grasp this? They talk about it all the time, but we aren't seeing it in the actual numbers. And I know we don't talk about benchmarks or for hiring percentages, but it is important to understand the actual composition of a workforce to understand whether you really are diverse or not. Right?

Torin: No, absolutely. And I think companies have struggled for a variety of reasons. Too many of them have had demoralizing results. They've had fatigue of conversation. And, honestly, Chad, that's because a lot of them have had faulty plans, bandaid-like tactics, if you will. "Let's kind of show up at this one event." Just one. I mean, there's 15,000 events that a person can go to. Let's just do one of them. Well, that's what I call a bandaid. Companies have struggled because they've had drips of interest versus that full-throttle effort. There's absolutely no way that for whatever software, 2 point whatever, whatever, whatever, you would kind of half-ass go at it. You would put your entire team on it to make it right. Even though you may deploy a version that's not 100% ready, you're not going to leave that lack of or that gap of closure out there in the marketplace. They're going to have their team fully on that, trying to make it right.

Torin: So that full-throttle effort has been missing inside a lot of organizations. Oftentimes, people like myself, strategists and consultants and trainers, we go in and we go in with a punitive conversation around leadership and white men, if you will. And shit, nobody wants to get beat down on like that. So, I mean, that doesn't necessarily bode well for bringing about progress. But most of all, what I think is really missing from most of the work that's being done. And mind you, when I do diversity strategy, I'm not doing it for bias training or unconscious bias training. I'm not doing it for anything other than I'm looking at the recruiting lens. I'm looking at how do we build high-performing teams, and not absolutely feel like recruiters and sources on the vanguard of incredible organizations. We are the frontline, if you will. And so I do my work focused on them.

Torin: The main reason why I feel like companies have struggled is because for the last 10, 15 years, if you will, it's been more of a social imperative versus as business imperative. And people like myself, if you will, have not necessarily done an incredible job of connecting the value of diversity to the organization. They have not connected the value of diversity across the chain: hiring, training, and advancing employees, procurement, product design, and marketing. We have missed that particular piece. And so I think that the reason why me and my team are successful is because we get away from ... We don't discount the social side of it, but we focus more on the business side.

Joel: Torin, you touched on technology a little bit. And Chad and I, it's a common topic for us. And there are subjects around programmatic recruiting where AI and machines are sourcing candidates. Or you look at virtual workspaces and how companies are sort of expanding and not having headquarters. Or sites like Upwork where the value of a worker is based on their reviews and what people that have worked with them or they've done jobs for review them. And it has less about, say, color, creed, religion, et cetera. Are you optimistic about the technology, or is it more of a band-aid and something that is not covering up the real problem?

Torin: I am optimistic about the technology because I feel like this gig economy that we're in provides access for more individuals to participate. Now, certainly, there are some levels of pause for me. Pause in the sense of whether or not these freelance or consultants, if you will, are being compensated and treated the way that they should be treated. I'm really about humanity. I'm like 1,000% in ... Let me say it this way. I care as much about the candidate as I do about the company. And if I had to take my choice, I'm going to always side with the candidate, even though the company is the one that pays me. I just feel like we should do right by people.

Torin: So I am optimistic in the sense that technology can extend the border. It can put a different perimeter around people and their ability to pursue opportunities. But I also take pause in the fact that if we don't have enough underrepresented individuals in the rooms that are creating this technology, then these technologies are going to exclude us on a continual basis going forward. And so I do want to see platforms like Upwork and other organizations, if you will ... I do want to see them have underrepresented talent, people that are black and brown, people that are differently-abled, people that are from different religious and political backgrounds, if you will. I want to see a variety of diversity building the technology so that all of the touchpoints don't leave people out. If that makes sense.

Chad: That does. Is it a good amount of this actually based off of just the basic job description and how they've been written over the years and all the different requirements that really aren't requirements that push out different groups?

Torin: I mean, you can say that. But in my time, see, I've been recruiting since 1998 on my own. I have never ... and I mean this, I can say it without any apology. I have never shared a job description with a candidate because I don't care about the job description. I need to understand from the hiring manager, what is it that you really need in this individuals? And while some people may not ... And the reason for that is because when I worked at MCI, I wasn't the best writer, if you will. And I actually missed out on a couple of promotions because my writing skills, according to the center director, were not up to par. And so the job description for me is, while it's key, it gives me a bit of a guide, a sense of something to go by, I don't see that as being what's pushing people out. I know great companies like Textio, and TalVista, and others are doing some work around optimizing job descriptions, if you will. And I most certainly appreciate that. I absolutely do. But I feel like the job description is just but a part of the process. The cog, for me, is the hiring manager. It's that human to human contact. That hiring manager is a problem.

Chad: And I agree, but here's the problem. We start talking about technology, we've got an entirely different conversation because you're not going to see some of those candidates that would be coming through because the technology's actually based off the requirements of the job.

Torin: Correct.

Chad: So therefore, the filtering mechanism comes in place, and some of those individuals that you might drag along for the ride aren't going to be there because they're going to be filtered out by this AI. And that's why I'm saying the actual base.

Torin: That's correct

Chad: The actual base of the information being used on the technology side of the house for AI, machine language, whatever the hell we want to call it, is going to be that job description and the requirements. And if those requirements are really just all bullshit, okay, there are some that are in there, yeah, here and there, we definitely need to have certifications here and there, but they really don't need to have a master's degree or a bachelor's degree or who knows, and these are different requirements that have been thrown in over the years, really just to filter out people. What happens then with technology and how do you consult companies to be able to really look through their entire strategy from the ground up? Because this is really part of the ground up scenario, right?

Torin: It is, and again, just in how you described it, it underpins and reinforces the need for diversity and inclusion inside of our organizations...

Chad: Yup.

Torin: And it's needed inside of every point along the value chain as I illustrated in the beginning of the call. And so whether it be the company that is building the technology that you are using as an ATS, whether it be the technology that you are using to do background screening, whether it be the technology that you are using to do the first level of contact with a particular candidate, it doesn't matter, that technology needs to be built by people that are diversely representative of the populations that we are going after. That's Number One. Number Two, our teams need to be diverse, our sourcing teams should be diverse, our recruiting teams should be diverse, hopefully our hiring team is going to be diverse, and all the way up, and that mitigates if you will some of that technology may be screening out talented individuals, maybe hiring managers exercising or leveraging their bias in the recruiting conversation. The more diversity we have in the process, hopefully the less we will experience if you will this unnecessary screening of talent.

Torin: I have a really good friend a couple of years ago who was looking for a job and he reached out and I can't remember the company, not that it's important, but he actually called the manager after the posting had been up for maybe a week and a half, two weeks, not a long time... the manager told him, he said, "Listen, I just pulled the trigger." Probably a month, I'm sorry, Chad, he said, "I just hired someone because I got tired of going through the resumes, more than half of them were bullshit...

Chad: Yeah!

Torin: And so he said, "I just got tired of going through them. Had you called me, had you called me, I guarantee you, I would have interviewed you. I guarantee you you would have probably been in the top two or three." And so I just understand that the technology is but a part of this particular process, and Joel, what I have always said to people is, people do the best job of hiring people. I appreciate the technology, but I don't believe that any tool is going to outperform me in my ability to make a great decision.

Joel: Let me switch gears from technology for a little bit and talk about government. Where is government failing, where is maybe government doing too much? One example that I can think of in a short time in the background check industry is the Ban the Box issue. Should employers be able to ask about criminal records or are they a felon, etc. What are your views on government in terms of what they can do or maybe where they're over-reaching in the diversity issue?

Torin: So let me just say that we have something in the neighborhood of 70 or 100 million offenders or ex-offenders running around the country right now. Many of them, a largess of them, are for distribution if you will, non-violent crimes. I firmly believe that we should have Ban the Box type legislation in every single state. I firmly believe that. Ban the Box legislation, I think that the only time that should be an issue is for somebody who has experienced a violent crime and even then, we really evaluate that on an individual and case by case basis. I think that we can do a better job of understanding if you apply the human touch, some common sense, a few great questions, a background check, perhaps a review of a person's prison records if you will, I think we can get to a point where we can say, "This person is one that we can bring into our organization with limited access or limited exposure, limited interaction," but I don't feel like it should be a person checking a box because I've served some time and now I'm non-considered for almost any type of employment. I think that that's just an absolute waste if you will, so legislatively, we should put a Ban the Box piece in every state and then, as employers, we should operate with discretion.

Chad: So don't you think this is the time for that, right now? We have such a crunch, the new numbers came out, jobs over 200,000, under 4% unemployment, this is the time, I'm talking to companies right now, all the way through, they're having problems finding talent. We're seeing surveys coming out where recruiters are saying this is the hardest it's ever been for them in 20 years or what have you, in trying to find candidates. This is a workforce, that again, they need to put a roof over their family's head, they need to put food in their families' mouths, these are individuals who might've done wrong, but goodness gracious, they've done their time, isn't this the time, right now, to make this happen?

Torin: It's absolutely the time, and again, we can't have it both ways, and I say "we," I'll use "we" putting myself in a variety of different disciplines and roles, if you will. We can't have it both ways, we can't keep them from applying and being able to secure employment and then on the flip side, get mad when...we just can't do that. And it's not necessarily working for us. The phrase "war for talent" comes into play, whether it be us talking about felons, or whether it be just in general, we've been saying the phrase "war for talent" for twenty years, twenty. Twenty years. So how played out is that? That's absolutely played out when we know we have a contingent of capable individuals that are lingering on the sidelines, ready to get in the game, ready to play, but we have these rules and these perceptions that are keeping them from playing. 70 million jobs, an incredible job of employing offenders if you will. So I think that now is definitely the time.

Joel: I want to stick on government a little bit, or at least politics. I couldn't let you go without just asking the current state of the country -- on one hand, I feel like it's as divided as ever, and on the other hand I feel sorta like, maybe it's energizing a group that wouldn't have been energized otherwise, and bringing issues to the forefront that maybe wouldn't have been, had we not had such a volatile leader of our country. I'm curious about your thoughts on diversity, just politically, immigration...Is Trump bad for this, or is he good for this? I guess is what I'm asking.

Torin: I absolutely feel like he's bad for this. And let me try to answer this non-politically if you will. If you're going to fight against immigration, when we have immigrants that are killing the business market right now, killing in a good way, slang, vernacular, I mean doing incredible things. Then why are we cracking down on immigration the way that he's doing it? Why not crack down on the people that are hiring the immigrants? Why are we not doing that? If we're going to do this, let's just do it the right way, not once again these Band-Aids if you will. So I'm going to get the person from Honduras and Nicaragua and other countries that are trying to get away from harrowing opportunity or things that are just putting their lives in danger or their economy or family in danger, but I'm not going to go after the guy who's hiring, the woman that's hiring them? That absolutely makes no sense.

Torin: There's certainly a better way for us to do all of this, and when we look at how many immigrants have come to the country and started organizations that are hiring tens of thousands of individuals, hundreds of individuals, when we think about countries right now that are copying all of the work and technology that we're doing over here, I just feel like we can do a better job of this from a governmental standpoint.

Chad: Feels like blunt force trauma in some cases. It really does. So I'm going to kick back to the business side of the house. In some cases, where I'm dealing with some of my clients on the veterans side of the house, it's interesting because ... I want to get your reaction, whether it's kind of parallel to what I'm saying... everybody wants to hire veterans. That's all there is to it, I want to hire veterans, I love it, but yet: you talk about that one event. "I went to that one event, and you know what, it just didn't work out for me." Not to mention, it was a free event, and then they're always looking for these free resources, and..."free" is not a strategy, obviously. But what I'm seeing or what I've seen over the years, in most cases, not all, is that companies will not commit. They will say that they are interested but they will not commit by actually putting budget and resources to that specific problem. Are you seeing that in the diversity community overall?

Torin: Absolute window dressing. There is no reason, none whatsoever, why we are still 50 years after legislation, basically having the very same conversation. It comes down to skill versus will --

Chad: I love that!

Torin: And I have said that probably since 2012, "skill versus will." I can stand on a stage and talk about Chrome extensions and technology and I can do all of those great things but if you don't care about doing diversity, if you don't want to go the extra effort, then it's not going to happen. Skill versus will. Let me tell you, inside of the book Blue Ocean Shift, I don't know if you're familiar with that book, but there is a case study in there for Citizen M Hotel. And really what they did was, they said, "We're not going to continue to try to compete against people that are in our space, the Red Ocean strategy, we're going to look at new ways of doing it because there's a lot of room in the Blue Ocean if you will."

Torin: And so what they did, and they were actually quite successful in transforming that stagnant, low-profit mid-range slice of the industry into really a high-growth, high-profitable affordable luxury room. And the way that they did it, they really just did a survey. They said, "Why is it that people are going to luxury hotels? Is it the room, is it the price?"

Torin: And people are like, "Hell, no, we're not trying to pay more money to sleep! That's not the reason we are going to a luxury hotel, five-star hotel. And they went down this checklist of all these different things, and it really came down to three things: location, comfort of their sleep, and the third one is surprising but it was the quality of the water. Like, can we get high pressure, great shower in the morning? You know? Can I sleep well in the evening? So they said, we can do away with concierge, and we can put kiosks in, and we can do all of these things that are not necessarily costing us a lot of money. We can restrict or constrict our lobby size, and we can add more room if you will to the rooms, we can add more amenities to the rooms, make the experience better, and people will come to our hotel versus going to the five-star hotel.

Torin: When it comes to diversity, they have been window-dressing, man, they have been fighting inside of a Red Ocean. Everybody says this tool is good, so everybody wants to use this particular tool. Everybody says that this is best in class, so now we want to do this best in class. I have an incredible client, probably one of the most talked-about clients this week, and when we first started working together in 2017, they said to me, "Torin, we want to best in class." And to make the story short, I said, "You don't need to be best in class, you need to be your best. Your organization is far different than the next organization and the next organization. Let's figure out, let's do the forensics to figure out what's necessary to make your organization the best that it can be." And you know what? You're not going to achieve results

if you're not committed, too many companies are not committed.

Chad: And stop looking for that damn silver bullet because it doesn't exist--

Torin: No fairy dust--

Chad: It's a strategy and you've got to go at this from the ground up and look at programs, all the way through, so yeah, man, I totally get that. I love the "Skill vs Will."

Torin: That's right.

Joel: Torin, I love that Chad hit on veterans, and that's sort of his sweet spot, and I think that, from my perspective, I think diversity for a lot of people is a color issue. When I think of it I think more and more of people with disabilities, I think of ...elderly folks, which are a lot of people, the Baby Boomers that are aging. They're being sort of displaced because they're thought of as not being tech-savvy enough or not having the skills. Talk about those two segments and what kind of advancement are we seeing. Are we way behind the eightball with disabilities and elderly versus maybe some other segments of diversity? What's going on there?

Torin: We are. We are behind, but the bottom line is we have to do better, if you will, in terms of being interested in it. Again, going back to the skill versus will, let me just touch on one thing, Joel. The reason why diversity has been so much referenced as a color thing is because we've allowed corporate heads and the media to construct that narrative over the last 30 years. They've made it a black versus white thing. They've not allowed it to be a very blossomed definition of diversity, where it includes the different genres and groups that you just previously mentioned.

Torin: Yes, I do believe that color is important because I feel like a person from a different country is going to add a different context to the conversation. I absolutely believe that, if we are sitting in a strategy meeting or a discovery meeting with hiring managers, and one of the managers at the table is blind, we're going to have a different conversation around what's needed in the person that's being hired. Just by the mere fact that he or she is blind at the table, the conversation is going to absolutely change.

Torin: I think, for organizations, if you really understand and subscribe to the fact that we have a plethora of job openings in technology, we have job openings in manufacturing, we have job openings in healthcare, job openings in the trucking industry. Even though autonomous vehicles is the rave right now, we still have job openings. We have job openings across the board. We must become, I guess, more willing to embrace a more expanded definition of diversity. We must also not be afraid to consider the positive ramifications of adding color to our environments. Let's face it, you put black and brown people in any environment, that shit is going to pop off and be good anyway.

Chad: I've got one more question. It might end up being more.

Torin: Yeah.

Chad: When you and I first started talking, you'd said that you'd listened to a couple of shows, and you asked me one pointed question that actually caught me off-guard. You said, "Do you get asked if you guys ... Do you get called 'angry white dudes'?" And I was like, "No, no, we don't." And then you told me a story, and I want you to tell that story. You remember that?

Torin: I absolutely do, and the reason I asked you that question is because I'm a prophet. No, for real. Seriously, the role of the prophet is not to comfort the king or the leader, but to challenge them. Every once in a while, you have to ask questions. You have to go into conversations that could be considered uncomfortable.

Chad: Yeah.

Torin: Even in that uncomfort, we both get to grow. We had a great first conversation, even though that was one of the things that I asked. I asked it in reference to a conference and you all's style on the radio and all that good stuff. I'm saying to you that, if I was to do a show the way that you do it, there would be a variety of people that would call me an angry black man.

Torin: I was just at SRSC in Austin and did my presentation, and I did the presentation in an hour, bringing people through slavery and Jim Crow and segregation and black laws and all of that, through Barack Obama, ending with Donald Trump, which is where we are right now. In a brief three minutes or so, I used that illustration to kind of say we've been really having this conversation for 400 years. 400, not 40, but 400.

Chad: Yeah.

Torin: There is absolutely no way that you can say that black and brown people are lazy, that hiring black or brown people is lowering the bar, that you cannot find black or brown talent or differently abled talent or veteran talent or women talent that are prepared. That's the tone of my conversation. You got to understand, when I got my feedback, there were three people, three. There were like 15 comments in my feedback, but three people called me an angry black man.

Joel: Wow.

Torin: Why? Why am I angry? Because I'm telling the truth?

Chad: Yeah, yeah.

Torin: I'm telling the truth. Nothing that I said was not true. But I'm angry to you because you don't want to face the truth.

Chad: And these people are supposed to be the enlightened people of HR recruiting-

Torin: That's right.

Chad: -and want diversity, but yet they can't take a basic history lesson.

Torin: They can't take it.

Chad: It doesn't matter if it was fire and brimstone or not. To be able to take that, and that's what kind of threw me was to actually put in your comments "angry black man," no, I've never had somebody call me an angry white man.

Torin: That's right.

Chad: You saying that, and Joel and I come off, I'm sure, a hell of a lot more course than you do. That just shows, that demonstrates the bullshit that you have to work through.

Torin: Absolutely.

Joel: Well, thank about Sheryl Sandberg's book, "Lean In."

Chad: Yeah.

Joel: Talking about she doesn't want women who take leads to be called bossy or bitchy. They're taking a leadership position.

Chad: Yep.

Joel: I think women probably face a similar bias as African-Americans and Hispanics and others that people like Chad and I just don't ever have to deal with or think about. I think it's great that we're getting enlightened, more recently now than ever before probably with even the Me Too movement, with females and the African-Americans. Trump is bad obviously in a lot of different ways, but I do think, in a weird way, he's shone a light on how we're more alike than we are different, if that makes any sense at all.

Torin: It makes a lot of sense. What I absolutely said, or I think as we rounded out that conversation, Chad, I just simply said that I try to encourage people, even though I'm not a trainer. I'm a strategist. Even though I'm a strategist, I try to help people with vernacular, if you will. I try to help shift the way that people think about what it is that's around us.

Torin: What I said was, we need to get away from saying "black on black crime." We need to get away from referring to Chicago when we start to talk about whatever as it relates to the black population. We have these things that are happening, if you will, and you don't ever hear "white on white crime." You don't hear folks talking about the mafia and the mob up in New York City. You don't hear that. But you hear, without any reservation, somebody will say, "Well, those black people, you're not like them." Well, what does that mean? What does that mean?

Chad: Right.

Torin: That's not a compliment to me. I don't want you to tell me or my children, "Your children are so well-spoken." What the fuck do you ...

Joel: Yeah.

Chad: Articulate, right?

Torin: Yeah, articulate.

Chad: How many times have you heard that shit, right?

Torin: I don't want to hear that. That's not a compliment. You may see it as a compliment, and I'm not calling you racist or anything. I'm just correcting you. Just accept the fact that I'm correcting you out of love. Those are not compliments. They're not terms that we should be using on a regular basis, especially if we're not doing it broadly. If we're only doing it for one group of people, then we're probably being a bit discriminatory, prejudiced, and we could be borderline racist. I want to try to get people away from that.

Joel: Well, Torin, we appreciate you actually taking time, coming on the show. If people want to learn more about you, what you do, where can they find you? Where can they get in touch with you to actually get some real movement into their diversity hiring?

Torin: Well, first of all, let me just say thank you again. I appreciate the both of you for giving me the space. Three things that I want to leave people with, it's important to note that one culture is not defined by or mutually exclusive to any one group. Number two, centering around people in the recruiting process tends to mature based on the actions, the conversations, and the scenarios that are presented and pursued. Number three, ethnic, geographic, and workplace demographic shifts are happening right now. The years that are important are 2019, 2030, and 2040. If you want to know more about 2019, 2030, 2040, or anything else that I've said, you can find me on all of social media @TorinEllis.

Chad: Or you can go to his website,, and look at some really cool-ass videos.

Torin: And hopefully it'll be a new site up next week. By the time this goes out, I should have a new site up.

Chad: Sweet, sweet.

Joel: Go check it out. Thanks, Torin.

Torin: I appreciate you guys, absolutely do.

Chad: Thanks so much. We out.

Chad: Okay, okay, okay. Before we go, remember when I asked you about the whole reflex and check your text messages thing?

Joel: Yeah, you know all about reflexes. And then I brilliantly tied it to text messages' 97% open rate. Then I elegantly, elegantly tied it to a better experience for your candidates.

Don't laugh, Chad. I can be elegant. Can't I?

Chad: Whatever, man. I know it's redundant. You already heard about Text to Hire, but you're still not using Text2Hire from Nexxt.

Joel: What?

Chad: I know, man.

Joel: Come on, man.

Chad: Since advertising takes repetition to soak in, I just thought I'd remind you again, this was all by elegant design. It's all about Text to Hire, and it's all about Nexxt.

Chad: Woo!

Joel: Engage better. Use Text to Hire from Nexxt. Two exes.

Chad: Booya!

Chad: Thanks to our partners at TA Tech, the Association for Talent Acquisition Solutions. Remember to visit

Ema: Hi, I'm Ema. Thanks for listening to my dad, the Chad, and his buddy, Cheese. This has been the Chad and Cheese podcast. Be sure to subscribe on iTunes, Google Play, or wherever you get your podcasts, so you don't miss a single show. Be sure to check out our sponsors because their money goes to my college fund. For more, visit

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