We had the good fortune of connecting with Leana Marie Marshall and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Leana Marie, every day, we about how much execution matters, but we think ideas matter as well. How did you come up with the idea for your business?
I worked at a yoga corporation who did not treat their BIPOC employees fairly. There was no diversity and I felt very isolated and excluded. There was very low representation of black and brown leaders in the community. No black or brown leaders in the executive suite. I asked over and over for diversity and inclusion training and also sensitivity training. Every single time my concerns fell on deaf ears. Working in a corporation with so much system racism, white privilege and tone deaf comments promoted me to start my own business, Elle Em Consulting.

What should our readers know about your business?
Elle Em Consulting emerged from the distressing effects of quiet bias–attitudes that uphold systemic prejudices–but in a “nice” way. How can “prejudices” and “nice” even exist in the same sentence? For the not so-privileged, “nice prejudices” and “quiet bias” are integrated into their lives daily. Think about a person of color arriving to take a yoga class or browsing through merchandise at an expensive store and people in those places return the “look”–the “oh, you’re here” look. Think about employees asking their human resources department to address issues of quiet bias only to have the HR representative excuse demeaning behaviors rather than address them. Elle Em Consulting aims to work with companies to address how they can improve and empower their workplace through taking action against “nice prejudices” and quiet bias. ******************************** Starting this company was not easy. There was so much blood, sweat, and tears. It was definitely an emotional journey. ********************************** There are many (if any) black owned Diversity & Inclusion companies. I may be the first!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are so many people to shoutout. I would like to shout out my yoga community for all of their love and support throughout this movement. They have been so fierce in standing in solidarity with me.

Website: https://www.elleemconsulting.com/
Instagram: @elleemconsulting
Twitter: https://twitter.com/elleemconsulti1