CATEGORY:

Created 6/5/2020 Updated 3/5/2021

Meg K and Co is a hiring agency for online entrepreneurs. 

We recruit and hire contractors and employees for values-led and conscientious companies. 

Here are our company’s values, mission, and commitments. We believe that values aligned partnerships have the most impact. We will update this on a regular basis as we continue to learn and evolve. And we believe that companies should make their stances and commitments known so that potential clients, partners, employees can opt in or out. 

Our Values: 

Black Lives Matter. 

Black Lives Matter. Black people shouldn’t have less access to resources and opportunities and should NOT be more likely to be murdered by law enforcement (with no consequences). I lived in St. Louis (near Ferguson, MO) where Michael Brown was murdered by a police officer, Darren Wilson, who was later acquitted. I taught in a classroom with Black students and it was incredibly sobering to see them and realize that statistically, they are more likely to be murdered by police and/or be incarcerated than their white counterparts. 

Racial inequity runs deep in our culture, our policies, our policing, and in who gets economic opportunities. There’s data that backs that – for one (of many) examples,  see here an article about Black female students in high school with identical transcripts not given the same opportunities to AP classes as their White counterparts. Black women in the US, across socio-economic statuses, are much more likely to die in childbirth and the infant mortality rate in African American infants is 2.3 times higher than White infants. These racist barriers and biases exisit in business, as well. 

We believe that we have an opportunity and responsibility to connect and facilitate working relationships and employment opportunities. We believe that diversity makes us better. We believe that Black people deserve the same opportunities as anyone else. I also believe in Black Excellence and in celebrating and elevating Black Joy. While we need to recognize the disparities and that being Black in the US is dangerous, part of dismantling this is celebrating the resiliency and excellence that Black people and other People of Color embody. 

It shouldn’t be dangerous to be Black in America. We need to consistently address and dismantle racism. Black Lives Matter.

Set the Standard for Equitable Hiring. 

We believe in creating justice within business, creating the standard, creating space, and holding our clients to rise our standard of equitable hiring. In our work, we intentionally explore and dismantle problematic, oppressive, and inequitable practices. With best practices in place, we set the bar and a high standard for our clients to ensure the most equitable process that we can. We not only lead by example, but we also require our clients to follow best practices and our standard for fair hiring. 

While we hold ourselves and others to a high standard, we also adjust our practices once we uncover that a practice is problematic and inequitable. We aren’t off the hook to do things right, though. It’s our responsibility to engage and do better as soon as we know how (and it’s our responsibility to learn and implement the how quickly and effectively). 

We use an inquiry-based approach (asking great and intentional questions to ensure we are getting to the root of what support you need, addressing  implicit biases, ensuring that you can set up your new hires for success). We regularly adjust our processes whenever we see opportunities to be more equitable and just. 

We understand that while our clients may not be at our standard yet, they desire to create a non oppressive work environment. We create the space for our clients to unpack, become aware, and rise to our standards.

Our hiring standards: 

  • We address apparent implicit biases (be it based on race, age, religion, body size/appearance, sexuality, gender identity, ability) through call ins and coaching conversations and make necessary adjustments. 
  • We have very clear criteria for highly qualified candidates.
  • The role must have the correct legal status. For example, having the time requirements of an employee (set, specific hours and an expected response time of less than 24 hours) for a contractor is not legal and is exploitative. We follow laws and regulations around what is allowed for contract work and what needs to be qualified as W2 employee work. When a worker’s status is in question, we connect our clients to HR experts. 
  • Job Postings Must include: 
    • Values and commitments statement of company
    • Inclusion statement 
    • Explicitly stated salaries and compensation
    • Accurate role expectations and time expectations
    • Inclusive Language

We will not participate in business or hiring practices that exploit others and are inequitable. We expect our clients and business partners to work towards equity. 

Our Mission: 

– to create successful and aligned work opportunities and connect businesses with employees and contractors through conscientious and equitable hiring and leading practices. 

– to be disciplined to our values and vision and the how of our vision, and to continue to grow and adjust it. 

Our favorite DEI/Anti-Racist Educators and resources: 

The Pause on the Play Community– lead by Erica Courdae and India Jackson

1:1 coaching or training by  Erica Courdae

Equity Centered Coaching Collective – lead by Trudi Lebron

Amplified Impact Mastermind by Trudi Lebron

J.E.D.I Collaborative 

Leesa Renée Hall

Mia Hemstad’s course, How to Dismantle System Racism Through Political Activism 

Actions + Commitments in June 2020, Updated February 2021

At Meg K and Co, we are committed to:

-continuing to speak up for Black people and Brown and Indigineous People of Color. 

2/25/21 This also includes people in the LGBTQIA+ community, Asian community, people with neuro-diversity and people of all abilities. 

-donating each month to a bail fund organization, an advocacy or resource organization for BBIPOC, and to political organizations that support anti-racist politicians to get into office. 

In 2020, I donated to the Chicago Community Bond Fund,  Freedom for Immigrants (formerly CIVIC), Joseph R Biden for President, Funds for the Warnock and Ossoff races in Georgia

-continued reflection of how I operate my business to be inclusive and equitable and have excellent outcomes for everyone, especially any BBIPOC clients. 

2020- This is ongoing- we’ve adjusted our practice to include salary on job postings (instead of asking for desired range of compensation) and including inclusion statements on job postings. 

-bettering my recruiting practices to recruit from more diverse platforms to give more opportunities to BBIPOC without tokenizing people. 

2020- This is ongoing. We regularly recruit to platforms for BBIPOC candidates and add more to our standard operating procedures for recruitment regularly. (specifically the Black Freelancers and Virtual Assistants facebook group and HBCUs on the Handshake apps). 

2/25/20-  I seek and partner with job boards for folks in marginalized communities as part of my recruiting budget, recently we started a partnership with Black Remote She job board and are working on adding more partnerships. 

Police brutality and violence towards Black people and People of Color is unacceptable. Racism and White Supremacy are pervasive and need to be dismantled by White people for the liberation of Black people and People of Color. Racism is a matter of life or death. 

2/25/21- White supremacy is dangerous and folks in other marginalized communities also deserve access and liberation. I analyze my actions daily and make changes when necessary and dismantle biases and change my behaviors. I hold space for other white folks (friends, family, colleagues) working on becoming more equity centered and just. I am  in paid DEI communities lead by WOC to continue my  anti racism journey and take more aligned actions. I also go through my own screening processes when hiring to ensure equitable and just hires.

Updated January 2021: 

-I’m committed to decolonizing myself and my business. 2/25/21 In progress

A few actions I take: I buy books from POC authors and books with diverse characters for myself and my family (check out my instagram highlights- I have some of my favorite romance novels by authors of color). As of January 2020, I’ve stopped purchasing clothes in the “fast fashion” realm and make more intentional clothing purchases from brands that I research and that operate sustainably and ethically, such as Tonle and United by Blue. My family and I are evaluating our consumer habits and are working towards creating less waste to combat environmental racism. As a family, we regularly watch content that are created by and represent BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ communities. I personally listen to podcasts hosted by BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ hosts and current event content to stay in the loop and up to date. I see room for improvement around becoming less ableist and and more inclusive to folks of different abilities. 

-Admitting when I am having racist thoughts or actions and changing my actions. 2/25/21 In progress

– Investing in continued Anti Racism and DEI Support- 2/25/21 In progress

– Investing in consultation to improve our hiring practices and further develop my leadership practices- 2/25/21 In progress

– Supporting organizations beyond where I contributed in 2020

– Embody and lead with our anti racist values and at the base and work exclusively with companies that value diversity, equity, and inclusion. 2/25/21 This is part of our screening process before accepting new clients. 

-3/10/2021 Unpack my internalized ableism and explore how we can create more access in the online business industry. Stop using ableist or other problematic language. 

–Megan K Baker

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A letter to white people from a problematic white person

Edited:-Changed the image from “A letter to white people by a white lady” to “a letter to white people about where to start- from a problematic white person” and added anti-racist resources as the bottom

Also, please note that this writing is a beginning point for white folks and this is not to replace work by Black people and other People of Color and professional anti-racism educators. I’m continuing to add resources to this post. 

To fellow white people: 

We are going to be problematic, no matter how much we try not to be. Being problematic in and of itself isn’t as much the issue as how you deal with it. Will you apologize if called out? Will you make your apology about you (centering whiteness?) and make excuses? Or will you be sincere and apologize for people you’ve hurt and pained– and move on and do better? 

And the issue here isn’t whether or not we get called out- the issue is that police are repeatedly killing Black people. Black people are incarcerated at a disproportional rate- by design! There are MAJOR discrepancies in life expectancy based on zip code and race! Black mothers and babies are disproportionately dying during pregnancy and childbirth! The issue is that our system was created to repeatedly marginalize Black people! People of Color are getting targeted, incarcerated, and killed by government institutions like the police and ICE. Protestors who are getting tear gas thrown at them and military/war style responses from enforcing police officers– This is unacceptable! White supremacy is exhausting and deadly. 

So to my fellow white people who are trying to do right and afraid of being problematic and messing things up more- you’re going to make missteps. I’ve messed up- and I will again. But it’s not about our egos and our feelings- if you are here to break down systemic oppression and undo the damage that our ancestors have done and we have perpetuated (and continue to perpetuate daily), you have to take a chance and take a stand. And continue to do so. Being quiet and not trying is more problematic than anything. And I understand if it’s overwhelming to dismantle what we’ve been taught and participate in conversations– there are so many resources out there for you to start- and people like me are here to hold space for you while you dismantle white supremacy. 

Think about it- truly think about what it would be like if your family could be murdered when being pulled over? And there’s a LOT of information to learn (and unlearn)- Critical Race Theory* being one of them. If you want resources, they are out there- there are many lists compiled and I’m happy to track them down. But DO NOT go into the DMs (Direct Messages, email inboxes, etc) of Black people asking them to educate you or provide you comfort as you’re sitting with guilt- google, follow accounts that everyone is posting about, get some books, question everything you’ve been taught about race, question the narratives and point of views in the media, and if you’re going to pay someone to educate you, pay Black people who have programs or whose content you’re consuming (you may be able to find pay links in their bios).

And when I say question everything, I mean pretty much everything- if a person of color approaches you, do you act or respond differently as if it were a white person? I know that I personally used to clutch onto my things if a person of color approached me. Society taught me that– we have biases. So I have reflected on those moments and continue to ask myself “would my innate response be the same if this person were a different race?” And admittedly, the answer was often “yes”. So I sit with that and continue to question. The question is not whether or not we are racist or have biases– if you are a white person, you do and now you have the opportunity (and an invitation) to dive deep and dismantle. 

A friend of color told me that this (being on board with BLM) is more than a marketing stunt while people are dying in the streets. It’s a lifelong commitment. Don’t stop at the instagram post.

And yeah, maybe you’re late to the party. There may be some guilt and shame there. Rule of thumb- don’t burden People of Color with those feelings- at least not unless it’s a space of facilitated restorative conversations. Process your feelings with trusted friends who are doing the work too. 

And I know it can feel confusing with messages like

––take a stand but

––elevate and create more space for Black Voices 

––don’t center your whiteness

Here’s my take on that- first of all, it’s my understanding that there’s not always a consensus from a whole community/race of people (duh)- what might be problematic to some might be okay to others- we’re all people, you know? And yeah, be clear about your values and that you condemn racism and believe that black lives matter. Then listen to Black voices- hold space and listen. And if you’re called out, don’t make it about you! I know the fear of being cancelled is real but it’s not about that- put your pride aside and apologize from the bottom of your damn heart for harming people. And move on- no tears- it’s not about us (I mean, cry privately if you need to). 

It’s not about us. And I know that if you’re new to this, it’s a lot- there’s guilt, there’s a lot to learn and unlearn, and whether or not you’re new, your heart hurts for People of Color. White supremacy is exhausting. 

And remember to not post something on social media and then stop there. That’s performance allyship and for show or optics. This is a lifelong commitment to dismantling your ingrained beliefs, challenging your racist uncle on facebook, telling your neighbor that “yeah, it’s too bad that buildings are being broken into but what is worse is Black people dying and I value them more than property- and protests are happening in response to the consistent problematic and deadly actions of police”, and giving money to people and orgs on the front lines, and moving to defund the police (which SYSTEMATICALLY kills People of Color with NO accountability- many guilty cops have been acquitted, it’s a fact), and have weird conversations with your parents or whomever. It’s on US to listen to Black people, and it’s on us to do the emotional labor of educating white folks- by challenging problematic actions and words, teaching them, holding space as they’re dismantling shit, calling them out, holding influential people accountable (especially those who take Black people’s money and are doing a shit job at being anti-racist and see how they respond–– do they give a heart felt apology about how they hurt people and unlearn their racism? Or do they silence Black people and give tone deaf half ass apologies? Marie Forleo, Brooke Castillo, Russell Brunson come to mind. And I hope they learn and do better– and they really should if they continue to have People of Color in their paid communities. 

And I’m not saying we have to cancel people who make a mistake forever (this is what’s called Cancel Culture)– but how do they respond to being called out (or called in- privately) when they do something problematic? If they’re not truly sorry and make it right, then go for it and cancel if you wish. 

And don’t hop on the bandwagon just because you’re afraid you’ll get cancelled if you’re not on board on Black Lives Matter. I hope that’s not the case. 

But there’s an argument to be made that cancel culture isn’t effective or restorative. Like, if I’m called out, I’m prepared to reflect, truly understand how I messed up and did harm without being outwardly defensive or making it about me (which is called centering whiteness). But instead being sorry for who I hurt and moving on to do better and not make the same mistake. 

If your internet hero is harming Black People and People of Color by ignoring them, erasing their comments, or saying or doing harmful things, tell them, and see how they respond and what actions they take. If they fix themselves, great- restorative! And more people on the correct side of things! And if not, let your dollars talk and stop giving them your money or whatever. AND GIVE TO BLACK and POC OWNED BUSINESSES (you can do this no matter what!) 

Anyway, that’s what I’ve got to say to white people. Our problems and fears of getting called out are NIL to what BBIPOC (Black and Brown and Indigenous People of Color) are dealing with. And it’s okay to have emotions around it- this is the work- do your work, have messy conversations with other white people to help them do the work and to help you- the onus is on us. 

Xo, 

Meg- if you’ve questions or comments, get at me on instagram 

Works Cited: 

  • Critical Race Theory definition https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/subject_specific_writing/writing_in_literature/literary_theory_and_schools_of_criticism/critical_race_theory.html 

Resource list: Updated 6/12/2020 (this list is not comprehensive but a few places and folkx to check out)

Scaffolded Anti-Racist Resources https://docs.google.com/document/d/1PrAq4iBNb4nVIcTsLcNlW8zjaQXBLkWayL8EaPlh0bc/mobilebasic

*Please note that the stages of Racial Identity Development originate with Janet Helms and Beverly Daniels Tatum

The Great Unlearn https://www.instagram.com/thegreatunlearn/ by Rachel Cargle

Monique Melton- Anti-Racism Educator

Leesa Renée- Anti Bias Facilitator who helps highly sensitive people explore biases

Article: Dear White People, this is what we want you to do by Inside the Kandi Dish

An Article from Business Insider: Police rioted this weekend, justifying the point of protests

NPR Code Switch Podcast https://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/484785516/the-code-switch-podcast

An Article from Rolling Stone- A Practical Guide for Defunding the Police https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/defund-the-police-1007254/?fbclid=IwAR3SEnbHgQSZ2VHuAjnLeYy-VXqAOiQfWeanBmQLjs3nuWoAcY_2XyZ5FRo

Resources for Business: 

Trudi Lebron- Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity Strategist https://www.instagram.com/trudilebron/

Erica Courdae- Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity Strategist https://www.instagram.com/ericacourdae/

Article: How to Create Diversity within Your Online Business by Rachel Rodgers: https://helloseven.co/how-to-create-diversity-within-your-online-business/

Advocacy and where you can donate: 

Black Lives Matter: https://secure.actblue.com/donate/ms_blm_homepage_2019

The Loveland Foundation: https://thelovelandfoundation.org/ways-to-give/ 

An Article from Nylon: Where to Donate to Help Black People with Disabilities https://www.nylon.com/life/black-people-with-disabilities-donations-resources?fbclid=IwAR2gUlRzYJoJCEZpbmu9DJ82fPRSh_qYebHYhYBWHPaGeg5ojB26y-SCORY

Chicago Community Bond Fund: https://chicagobond.org/

Southern Poverty Law Center: https://www.splcenter.org/

Black Birth Workers: 

https://www.instagram.com/mxkingyaa/

https://www.instagram.com/shishi.rose/

https://www.instagram.com/theeducatedbirth

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Updated June 4, 2020

Commitments as a person and Business:

At Meg K and Co, we are committed to:

-continuing to speak up for Black people and Brown and Indigineous People of Color. 

-donating each month to a bail fund organization, an advocacy or resource organization for BBIPOC, and to political organizations that support anti-racist politicians to get into office. 

-continued reflection of how I operate my business to be inclusive and equitable and have excellent outcomes for everyone, especially any BBIPOC clients. 

-bettering my recruiting practices to recruit from more diverse platforms to give more opportunities to BBIPOC without tokenizing people. 

Police brutality and violence towards Black people and People of Color is unacceptable. Racism and White Supremacy are pervasive and need to be dismantled by White people for the liberation of Black people and People of Color. Racism is a matter of life or death. 

–Megan K Baker

Resources: Getting Started on Anti-Racism work:

Scaffolded Anti-Racist Resources https://docs.google.com/document/d/1PrAq4iBNb4nVIcTsLcNlW8zjaQXBLkWayL8EaPlh0bc/mobilebasic

The Great Unlearn https://www.instagram.com/thegreatunlearn/ by Rachel Cargle

Monique Melton- Anti-Racism Educator

Article: Dear White People, this is what you want you to do by Inside the Kandi Dish

An Article from Business Insider: Police rioted this weekend, justifying the point of protests

Resources for Business: 

Trudi Lebron- Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity Strategist https://www.instagram.com/trudilebron/

Erica Courdae- Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity Strategist https://www.instagram.com/ericacourdae/

Article: How to Create Diversity within Your Online Business by Rachel Rodgers: https://helloseven.co/how-to-create-diversity-within-your-online-business/

Advocacy and where you can donate: 

Chicago Community Bond Fund: https://chicagobond.org/

Southern Poverty Law Center: https://www.splcenter.org/

Black Birth Workers: 

https://www.instagram.com/mxkingyaa/

https://www.instagram.com/shishi.rose/

https://www.instagram.com/theeducatedbirth

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What the L!? Leadership Summit in April 2020 hosted by Meg Baker

The leadership training summit has come and gone- HOWEVER, if you want to join the What the L!? Leadership Community and get access to some great content from the Summit, click here!

Leading, empowering, and healing during uncertain times

April 8+9- on Zoom

Cost: zero dollars (and v. valuable!) 

The last couple of weeks may have you feeling confused, isolated, scarce. Of course, we want to do amazing things with our lives and businesses, but also things feel so unstable. You’re trying to find our footing in a time where everything’s been shaken up. 

Want access to the leadership training replays? click here!

I don’t have all the answers. That’s why I’m connecting you to my favorite people in the online community- both biz experts and healers. So whether you’re a biz owner wondering what your next steps are for your business OR a human seeking some answers and stability for how to carry on in daily life, this summit is for YOU!

YOU have a place here in the summit. I feel strongly that not one person has the right answers for you. This is not a one size fits all advice kind of situation. And I strongly believe that in this collective of sessions, you will take away the next steps that are right for YOU, RIGHT NOW.

And it’s OK to be in your feelings. And it’s ok to NOT know what TF is going on.  I’m here, not to give you the answer, but to guide you-  through my connections to these amazing humans that are leading sessions and discussions at the summit! 

Get access to the leadership training replays

I believe that leadership is what’s going to save us. We’ve got to rise up and show up. 

Those who show up will walk away with

-resilience and leadership inspiration

-strategies to pivot your biz/offerings

-strategies to communicate during weird times

-community

-understanding about self and opportunities to heal some sh*t

SPEAKER LIST

Get access to the leadership training replays

Related Post:

3 Ways to Hire Intentionally while building team

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When I started entrepreneur-ing in 2017, I emerged as “Meg K the VA”. This was a great place for me to start. As I have experimented (hello 3 in human design), I’ve totally changed the way in which I support my people. I started as a traditional catch-all, give me things to do to fill these 10 hours VA. I needed to start somewhere and this was such a great way to dip my toes into the online biz space. 

I’ve since evolved from VA to VA agency to content writer and now I don’t really do any of these things! Right now, I’m loving supporting my people with consulting, hiring, creating systems, and helping visionaries set up their businesses in order to be supported in a way that’s unique to their needs. Is there a word for “who” I am now? Idk. And, I may continue to evolve in what I offer and how I support the people. Entrepreneurship is one big experiment! And we all have permission to play and explore and evolve!

So nah, I’m not a VA anymore. Hence shifting to “Meg K and Co”! Who are “and Co”? For right now, it’s the people I hire to help me with my personal and professional development and the people I support! 

And all the love to the VAs and implementors out there! You are so needed! I’ve just realized that’s not my genius! For the moment, I’m here to help the visionaries set up their businesses to get the right support and to set up the right implementors/VAs/whomever for success!

So it’s still me- Meg K is still who she was before! (so third person lol) I just don’t have the cute rhyming/assonance anymore in the name 🙂 

Here’s what I offer now for my clients: 

– I offer intensives to troubleshoot and audit current systems so that I can recommend ones that will work best for each business and their unique needs (this can sometimes include setting up systems like Dubsado as well). I have found that business owners need to be in the driver’s seat for this and I can translate their needs into the framework of something like Dubsado/Stripe/etc. 

– I offer intensives to help business owners identify not only what (as far as systems go) but WHO needs to be supporting them in their business. We co create Roles and Responsibilities as well as Job Descriptions so that my clients can get the correct support. We also talk through other barriers to being supported that might pop up. This is for my people who have perhaps tried hiring a VA before and it just didn’t work out (which is OK, this happens– often times there’s some foundational work that just needs to be done first). 

– I offer done for you hiring services. I typically offer this once I have done an intensive with a client IF we’ve identified that this is something that they need. This includes Roles and Responsibilities documents and Job Descriptions (if we haven’t created them already), posting the jobs, managing all of the applications, presenting the information to my client in an easy to digest way, consulting, interview questions, as well as support and leading the interviews. The final say and ownership always goes to the client though 😉 And I’m there to support!

How have you evolved since the beginning of your entrepreneurship? What lights you up now?

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