July 30, 2020

From Laid-off to VP – [And Why the Future of Belonging is Community]

Co-host of our podcast Techish Abadesi Osunsade discusses the next chapter of her career, after having been let go from her previous position during the midst of the pandemic [a process she was extremely transparent about here]. 

2020 — what a year! I’m extremely grateful to have good news to share in a year that’s really put us through the ringer. I’ve just started in this new role and I’m excited to work alongside the leadership team to create positive lasting change not just in the company but, I hope, the entire tech industry.

I first worked with Brandwatch in 2018. I told my good friend Dylan Marvin, Brandwatch’s Chief Legal and Administrative Officer, that I was disappointed by the lack of tech companies investing in the Hustle Crew workshops I’d designed for underrepresented employees.

Within weeks I found myself at Brandwatch’s Brighton office teaching a group of women leaders (including some on video conference from international offices) about growth mindset and leveraging its power to achieve long-term career goals.

Just a few months later I was back at Brandwatch again, this time in their New York office, teaching a group of hiring managers from engineering to design about bias, privilege and structural oppression and how to leverage this knowledge to reduce bias in decision-making and promote more inclusion in company culture.

I feel incredibly special and valued to have been headhunted for this new VP role. Throughout the recruitment process, I was extremely explicit and bold about why I would go about things a certain way if I was successful.

It’s the first time in my career where I didn’t worry about coming across too radical while opining about underrepresentation and belonging at work.

I didn’t worry about what they would think of me if I spoke honestly as a Black and Asian woman who leads a community of underrepresented professionals.

I was emboldened by the fact folks were referencing Techish podcast in my interviews! (If you aren’t already a subscriber, what are you waiting for?)

I hope you will, as always, support me in this new chapter. But I know what you’re thinking — what about Hustle Crew? Don’t worry, Hustle Crew isn’t going anywhere!

Over the last few weeks, we’ve redesigned the website to streamline our processes, scaled up our team of experts to lead talks and workshops, and of course, our membership community continues to grow — if you haven’t joined yet, you can do that here.

As the feminist creative Anais Nin said almost a century ago — 

“Good things happen to those who hustle.”

Abadesi Osunsade

Abadesi Osunsade is the founder and CEO of Hustle Crew. She's also the co-host of the Techish podcast and the author of Dream Big Hustle Hard.

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