The Next Normal: An Interview with Dennis Williams

The Next Normal: Dennis

In this episode, I talk with Dennis Williams, Senior Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility at Warner Media.

In this episode, we talk about what it really means to put resources to work to create a better, more just world;  What is the responsibility of partners outside of the nonprofit sector to push themselves beyond comfortable answers to tough questions about how to create true equity and inclusion, and how the nature of partnerships might need to change and expand to create more space for diverse stories and perspectives – both out in the world, and at decision-making tables.


What You’ll Learn in This Episode:

[2:46] How is social impact work changing and what changes have already occurred?

[5:24] The next step forward for creating inclusivity and breaking down boundaries.

[8:47] Re-thinking sharing power and platforms.

[11:00] What gets in the way of transformative power sharing?

[14:00] Believing in a shared humanity that benefits everyone.

[18:40] Broadening the conversation by looking at the whole eco-system.

[23:58] How the process for content creators partnering with platforms has changed.


Key quotes:

·       “The toxicity, the divisiveness, all of the things that we were seeing were, quite honestly, the canaries in the mine for so many people. Most of us were not surprised that we got to where we got to because we saw it coming all along.”

·       “Are we just throwing the cheque over the wall instead of breaking the wall down? Instead of looking at the structures that were keeping people marginalized, paralyzed, crippled in the way that they needed to move through the world…Are we part of the solution that we’ve been working towards?”

·       “What more can we be doing? What can we do that’s different? Have we given this issue the same weight that we give other business priorities? That for us was the transformational question …”

·       “If you ask a different set of questions, you get different answers.”

·       “It’s not simply enough to have the most popular show that has the broadest reach. It’s realizing that after that show ends you are still able to do more with your platform.”

·       “There is space in this conversation for all of us. We all have a role to play.”

·       “If you aren’t availing yourself of every resource that your company has, especially when we’re talking about the people that comprise that company, if you’re not availing yourself of all their talents, then shame on you.”

·       “Part of progress is knowing what you don’t know.”


Resources Mentioned:

·       Warner Media