How women can apply integrity, intention, and intensity in the workplace
August 19, 2021 | By: Chiara Milioulis, Product Marketing Manager
This is Inside Voices, a new interview series from Amazon Advertising that spotlights Amazonians and the work they do to ensure a diverse and inclusive work environment. In each interview, we’ll ask various leaders within Amazon Advertising about how they foster diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) within their teams, the challenges they’ve faced and overcome in their career, and their advice to others.
Ahead of Women’s Equality Day, we spoke with Angela Mitchell-Corbin, Senior Manager of Global Advertising Partner Development and leader of the Partner Acceleration Product Marketing team, on the ways she’s helped support women’s equality in the workplace. In this interview, she shares what DEI means to her; how she helps her team feel a sense of inclusion, belonging, and equity on a daily basis; and the advice she has for her male co-workers on how they can help their female counterparts feel supported.
What does diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) mean to you and why are they important?
One of the most succinct definitions that I have seen for DEI can be summarized as follows: “Diversity” is where everyone is invited to the party, “equity” means everyone gets to contribute to the playlist, and “inclusion” means everyone has the opportunity to dance. To me, the overall concept is never a “one-size fits” approach—it means that we all must not only understand how to define it but also why it is important that each component works together. DEI must be lived values and show up as visible and actionable programs and initiatives that drive the culture and accountability framework of the organization.
What are some of the ways Amazon has helped support women’s equality in the workplace?
One of the biggest and most recent initiatives that Amazon has done is outlining a set of hiring and promotion targets for 2021. This includes increasing the number of women at senior levels in tech and science by 30% year over year and doubling the number of US Black senior leaders. Having the right development funnel to build the next wave of women leaders is a key part in proactively impacting these goals. The company has also committed to more frequent internal reporting on diversity matters, ensuring participation in companywide inclusion training, and inspecting any significant demographic differences in performance reviews and attrition on individual Amazon teams. This is a major win not just for proclaiming the importance of women’s equality but also establishing specific goals to drive accountability for leaders to show progress.
What are some actions that men can take to support women’s rights?
There is no “magic formula” to do this, but there are three key things that men can explore to support women, and those who identify as women.
First, educate yourself. It’s as easy as researching movies, books, or articles that can provide more insights on the history, accomplishments, and challenges concerning women’s rights.
Second, confront your own biases, which sometimes surface in the way that women are described (e.g., “aggressive” or “ambitious”), as opposed to those same attributes from a man (e.g., “confident” or “strong”). Recognize potential biases when you hear them and challenge them.
Third, be an advocate and ally. Give credit and seek to support strong leaders in the organization that could benefit from your collaboration, sponsorship, and network. If you believe in the professional trajectory of a current or up-and-coming woman leader, actively seek to help and support them.
If you have one piece of advice for a woman who’s advocating for her career advancement, negotiating something, or flagging a concern, what would that be?
In general, I apply three basic principles to how I approach professional and personal situations, and it is with 1) integrity, 2) intention, and 3) intensity.
Integrity: What is the right solution and how does it amplify shared values that can become a foundation of the conversation?
Intention: Be clear on why your “ask” is viable and ensure that you can back it up with facts and data where possible.
Intensity: Never allow anyone to control your destiny and what you aspire to accomplish—pursue it through multiple paths and be fearless.
Whether I was negotiating a new job offer or addressing a difficult topic, I typically go back to thinking about them through the lens of integrity, intention, and intensity.
Can you give an example of how you make your team feel a sense of inclusion, belonging, and equity on a daily basis?
A key initiative that I prioritized when joining the Partner Acceleration team was creating a Team Charter. I drove this initiative early in my leadership role to build trust and establish an understanding of the behaviors and strengths of the team, develop our culture, and operationalize the team charter to make our culture a reality.
In addition, I make an effort during on-going one-on-ones to balance business topics with also getting to know each other. Lastly, our weekly team meetings include ice breaker questions at the beginning of the meeting (e.g., “If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?”) to foster ways for the team to build our internal relationships, have fun, and learn about one another. We continue to iterate and be open to new ways to drive a positive environment of inclusion within our team.
Want to find out more about the work Amazon is doing to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace? Visit aboutamazon.com/workplace/diversity-inclusion. You can also follow Amazon Advertising on LinkedIn.
Angela Mitchell-Corbin is the leader of the Partner Acceleration Product Marketing (PAPM) team that drives the creation of educational assets across the Amazon Advertising product suite and provides product marketing expertise to help build and grow our partners. Prior to this role, she was the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) of Woot.com, where she was responsible for traffic, visual and user design experience, content, social media, merchandising/promotional events, and the overall marketing/brand strategy.
Angela has been a Central Penn Business Journal “Forty under 40” recipient, received the Mayor’s Award for Distinguished Service in Pennsylvania, featured in the National Black MBA Association’s Black MBA Magazine, YWCA Women of Distinction Award nominated by The Hershey Company, and Pillsbury USA Golden Doughboy Award winner. In addition, she has held leadership roles as President of the National Black MBA Association - Greater Harrisburg Chapter, and President of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. - Epsilon Sigma Omega Chapter. She holds a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) with concentration in marketing and a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Business Administration from the Sybil C. Mobley School of Business & Industry at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, FL. She’s married to Rahsaan Corbin and proud “Bonus Mom” to Sanai and Rahsaan II.