Creating Inclusive Learning Environments at Work with Katrina Loutzenhiser

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Creating Inclusive Learning Environments at Work with Katrina Loutzenhiser
About The Episode Transcript

In this episode, we chat with Katrina Loutzenhiser, Director of Learning and Development at Oncology Nursing Society, about challenges in providing learning and development to a member organization, motivating people to engage in DEI work, and integrating DEI into the workplace. We also discuss our involvement with ONS as clients and share insights from our recent work together.

 

[00:00:50] Clients as podcast guests.

[00:04:25] Interview with Katrina starts.

[00:06:25] DEI Journey

[00:10:55] Tying bonuses to diversity training.

[00:13:50] Mandatory vs voluntary training.

[00:18:13] Engaging in lunchtime conversations.

[00:21:27] Impact of Five Minute Conversations.

[00:24:06] Importance of post-training work.

[00:28:44] Intersection of L&D and DEI.

[00:32:06] Knowledge checks.

[00:37:10] Future goals and aspirations.

[00:40:44] Meaningful job for women.

Links mentioned:

(00:06 - 00:50) Rachel Murray: Hi, and welcome to the She Geeks Out podcast, where we geek out about workplace inclusion and talk with brilliant humans doing great work, making the world a better and brighter place. I'm Rachel. And I'm Felicia. Are we getting into it right now? No, we are first. I'm going to tell you who we're speaking with before we get into it. In this episode, we got to speak with Katrina Loutzenhiser, Director of Learning and Development at Oncology Nursing Society, aka ONS. And we talked about challenges related to providing L&D, that's learning and development, to a member organization, how to motivate people to join in on DEI work, and how to incorporate DEI into all the things workplace. (00:50 - 03:45) Felicia Jadczak: Yes, everything possible. But before we get into our delightful conversation with Katrina, let's just chat about stuff. So one of the, I think one of the cool things, and this is a mini spoiler alert, but Katrina and ONS are actually our clients. And so we don't always have clients on, but it's really fun when we do have them on the pod because, you know, not that we're trying to be like, doing an infomercial for ourselves, but it's, for me, I really enjoy hearing people who are actually doing the work and also hearing how that work happens. And this particular work that we did with them was in October of last year, so that's 2023. I guess, what is time? But I was actually one of the facilitators and I prepped all the material for it. And we had one of our other lovely contract facilitators, Maya, with us. And this happened to be, I think, one of the very first things that I did right after I came back from sabbatical. Definitely compared to pre-2020, we do most of our stuff virtual, right? ONS was an all-day affair. They're based in Pittsburgh. And they were coming together for the first time since the pandemic had started off. So that was a pretty big deal. And, you know, I think that anytime you have large groups of people coming together for workshops, it just adds an additional layer of complexity, even if you don't even take into account pandemic dynamics and things like that. So, you know, we'll talk more about the specifics because it does come up in our conversation with Katrina. But I will say, like, as a facilitator, what I always really love is just this kind of work and facilitation. It really is a two way street because I can come into a space in a room, you know, a conference ballroom, whatever it is, and I can talk my ear off at you. But if there's if the folks are not giving me anything, it's not fun for anybody. because then my voice will just go, it's boring, whatever. So there has to be some willingness to at least listen, engage to a certain extent. And I think that's really where you see, you know, if you're looking at differences between why one workshop went really great and the other one didn't go so great, a lot of times it's that resistance or that willingness to engage that really makes a difference. And so You know, I definitely still remember pretty vividly the facilitation because there was just a lot of openness to discussion, which is really nice. And as we talked about in the interview, the people were just really, really lovely. And so it's always nice to engage with people where you're not just telling them things and you're saying, yes, yes, yes, of course, of course, of course, but there's actual back and forth. There's engagement, there's questioning, there's thoughtfulness around it. That was a little snippet sneak preview. I'll talk more about that in the interview itself.

(03:46 - 04:06) Rachel Murray: A little sneaky peeky. Well, yeah. And I think in the future episodes, we should dive more into just some of the ways that we approach the work that might be different from the way others do. Because I think that you and the facilitation team do a beautiful job of the work. So but we have we have we have we have an interview to get to.

(04:06 - 04:23) Felicia Jadczak: I know. And we'll talk about all this stuff in the interview. So on to our discussion with Katrina. All right. Hi, Rachel. Hey, Felicia. And hi, Katrina, our guest for today. Hello.

(04:23 - 04:35) Rachel Murray: Thanks for having me. Well, let's get into it. I would love to hear your superpower origin story, basically your background and journey. What led you to your current role? Sure.

(04:35 - 04:51) Katrina Loutzenhiser: I've got kind of two tracks, one on the L and D side, how I got here. Um, I originally thought I was going to be a teacher. Um, and then I decided that a room of 30 children was maybe not where I needed to be.

(04:51 - 04:59) Felicia Jadczak: Uh, and, and not want to be any like specific kind of teacher or just like, you know, like, like middle school, high school, a certain subject.

(04:59 - 07:08) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Sure. Spanish. I thought I was going to teach Spanish. Um, cause I, I. I did a study abroad in Spain, I've been learning Spanish since I was little. So I thought that was where I wanted to be and that turned out to not be true. So then I got into adult learning. So I ended up being a trainer, and then train the trainer and moving there. And then I kind of stumbled into online learning at some point. So instead of in person, and that's how a lot of careers develop, right, you stumble into something, and then it takes you down a path. And then that's been That's been my path ever since. creating online learning and now I'm the Director of Learning and Development, which means I don't actually do a lot of creating anymore, right? I do a lot of meetings and budgets, but I have a team that designs online learning and that's, you know, that's my passion. I love it that we teach adults and then our adults go forth and treat patients. So I feel like I get to have a broader impact with my educational tools because because of that. And then previously I worked at a school of education. So also the same thing, teach teachers who then go out and teach students, right? So it felt like I could have a broader impact without actually being in a classroom. So that's kind of that. And then I wanted to tell you how I kind of got into the DEI stuff. So that, I think that starts really young. I grew up in a military community. um and so you grow up with my dad was military you grow up with these kids who have all sort of backgrounds and who have been all over the world so i feel like it started really young and then when i moved away i realized not everybody had that perspective and we had some work to do um and so that kind of got me into uh everywhere that I've worked, always being involved in trying to get people to understand different perspectives and learn the different places that people come from. So yeah, that's kind of how I got here.

(07:10 - 07:43) Felicia Jadczak: That's so lovely. Thank you for sharing that. I had no idea. Spanish, military, all sorts of stuff. But you mentioned you're currently the director of learning and development at an organization called Oncology Nursing Society, or ONS. We'll shorten it for the sake of all the words. What does learning and development look like in your industry? You mentioned online learning. It seems that that's the primary focus, but oncology nursing society encompasses a lot of populations. So could you talk a little bit more about what that specifically looks like in your current, I guess, industry and role?

(07:43 - 08:43) Katrina Loutzenhiser: So a lot of learning and development departments are employee-based. They train employees to do things and we have a good-sized organization, but it is relatively small. Our department is actually focused on members and customers, so we also have non-member customers. So, that's how it works in the association world is you are training people who don't work for your organization, which is a special challenge right you can't make it required you're relying on other institutions to kind of enforce you can't track people the way you might want to in a traditional L&D. It has its own special challenges, but we can use it, we can leverage it in different ways because they're not our employees. So it does look a little different, but I think that's most of the association world, not just us.

(08:43 - 08:55) Rachel Murray: Yeah, and that leads us sort of to the next question. I'm curious about ONS's DEI journey and what prompted you to reach out to us for some in-person training that we did with you last year.

(08:56 - 10:55) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Sure. As you know, DEI journeys are long and they're never ending, right? There's always more education to do. So ONS has kind of been on this journey for a while. And at some point we created a committee that didn't have enough direction and it was kind of scattered. We didn't know what to do. And it was a miss on our part. We brought in a consultant that helped us do surveys and listing sessions with staff, with members, with customers, with volunteers. They were able to help us create a plan. From there we created another team, right, with a more specific set of direction. And we started requiring online courses, start small, start with modules. And then kind of what happened last year was ONS put its money where its mouth is, which I super appreciate. And I think that took some courage from our leadership. So each year we can earn a bonus and part of earning that bonus is that the whole organization has to do something. And last year that was participate in a couple of online modules and do this workshop and create a departmental action plan. And everybody, 100% has to participate for everybody to get a bonus, right? It's not like, oh, if you do it, you get a bonus. The whole world has to do it, which I appreciate, right? We had a real initiative from leadership that said, this is important. And yes, we'd love everybody to be intrinsically motivated, but that's not always true. And so they kind of put it in, if you want this kind of bonus, then you have to do it. And so, I think that's a great motivator and allowed us to move the whole organization forward.

(10:55 - 12:20) Felicia Jadczak: That's so interesting. I've definitely heard of tying bonuses to doing this kind of work, but I haven't ever actually heard of a company requiring everyone to do it. And I'm curious because I just remember I was flashing back to grad school and it's not quite the same analogy, but At the end of grad school, there's like a capital campaign and you know and so my school, my class rather had tried to get 100% participation, even if it meant donating $1, and we had one student who refused to donate. I think it was more just to be a jerk than anything else, but it was so frustrating. We tried all sorts of things. We were cajoling him. We were like, you got your job out of school because of this place. Why wouldn't you do this? Can we donate on your behalf? He just held out. We were 99.9% close to the way there, but we didn't make it. I'm just curious, did you run into any of that kind of resistance around people not wanting to do it? Because I just feel like, you know, there's always such even in the most, you know, inclusive, progressive, committed organization, there's always going to be some kind of resistance to this work, because that's why we're still doing this work. Right. So just curious, like, how is that? How did that land when, you know, leadership and you and your team first kind of pitched this model to the rest of the organization?

(12:22 - 13:38) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Well, I will say that my organization is fantastic. And I think there was a lot of buy in to start right I think a lot of people are intrinsically motivated to do this work, but for people who aren't right everybody likes money. And so, it, it helped right that's part of the organization's commitments. I don't know that we had a ton of resistance. There was like no one holding out with their $1 donation. So we didn't really have that problem. But there were definitely people in departments who had to carry others, right people had to be responsible for others in their department because they had to be pushed. And I think some of that's good because I've been in so many trainings where I'm probably not like I want to be there. I probably know some of those things and the people who really need to be there don't sign up. And so it's it's important that like those people also get pushed to be involved. And so so we did have some of that, but 100 percent compliance. And that's also why you did the online training, because there were some people who are off on FMLA. Right, that couldn't do it. So we have the in-person workshop, and then we have online that made it more accessible for people who maybe didn't be there.

(13:40 - 14:48) Rachel Murray: That leads me to another question. We've struggled with the idea. I think we've got a little bit back and forth on the idea of mandatory training versus voluntary. You know, I think there's pros and cons to both. But one that you sort of shared was like that whole, like the people who need to be there. That's, I think, the desire for the mandatory training, right? It's like the people who need to be there don't want to be there, so they're not going to show up if it's not mandatory. But then you may get people who are really not wanting to be in that space, finding it to be disruptive or not useful, and you're not really changing any minds. It's more of like an echo chamber, like a disruptive, I don't know, kind of it ends up being maybe a negative thing as opposed to a positive thing. So you sort of go back, but when you make it mandatory, it's also showing that the organization is really committed to this, and it's really important, and that's really the overarching theme that people need to take away from it. Did you find that there was any sort of resistance in that? I know you mentioned there wasn't any resistance, but in the actual space, maybe Felicia, you can speak to this too, since you were part of the training. You facilitated it.

(14:48 - 14:49) Felicia Jadczak: I know, it's like spoiler alert.

(14:52 - 14:59) Rachel Murray: Like, how was that experience given that everyone who could attend in person did attend.

(14:59 - 15:56) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Like, I'll start with it. Sure. Yeah, and I'll jump in from my perspective. That to start your organization did a great job of making it an accepting space and letting people have their space to have their feelings about whatever their perspective was. And the feedback that we've gotten is that the most valuable thing was the interactions like at the tables. So it wasn't pressure of having to learn things or being forced to view certain ways. It was engaging with your colleagues and learning about your colleagues. And it was centered around diversity, but being able to have those conversations ended up being valuable even to people who were kind of like, I don't want to have to be there. So I think from my perspective, it was a win, even though it was mandatory.

(15:58 - 16:02) Rachel Murray: Way to give us a commercial, by the way. Thanks so much, Katrina.

(16:02 - 16:27) Felicia Jadczak: Obviously we had a vested interest in inviting you on our podcast anyway, but I will say, you know, it's, um, I'm like remembering back to, so we, we did this training, gosh, let me know at this point, months ago, last year, uh, last fall. And, you know, I just remember, and correct me if I'm wrong, Katrina, I think this was the first time you all had been back to your physical office location since March, 2020. Is that right?

(16:27 - 16:36) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Yeah. It was the first time we had all gotten together. Some of us have had little things, right. Organization back in the first time. Yeah.

(16:36 - 19:41) Felicia Jadczak: And that was like a huge deal. I mean, I remember actually, I'm laughing now because I was just remembering back to when we were setting up, it took us a little bit of time because the IT guys were like, we haven't even turned on these screens in years. So normally it would be super easy, but we forget how the buttons work. You know, and that's obviously its own challenges that comes into play with the new world that we're living in. But, you know, I think what I remember the most about the training, and I will also say it was a long training, it was an all day training, that it's a lot of time to commit. And I know you've already said that leadership was You know, put their money where their mouth is but time is also really important too. And, you know, as a facilitator and you know coming from our perspective we always obviously appreciate engaging with all of our clients but I think especially recognizing when you're. You're not just saying, you know, give us a one and done. How quick can we do it? How cheap can we do it? It's meaningful because it shows that you're an engaging partner in this work. And right. And it's not about us just telling you what to do. You have to really be open to at least listen and engage and consider. And I think one of the things that stood out the most for me was during the lunch break, we had about an hour, I think, for lunch. and I was going to go find my co-facilitator and just kind of hang out with her and chat a little bit. And then everyone was so kind and just welcoming. And so a few of your colleagues saw me looking for my co-facilitator and were like, oh, come sit with us, which I've been to a lot of in-person trainings and that almost never happens. I usually hole up somewhere by myself and scroll on my phone. And it's not that people don't want to talk to you, but everyone just kind of disperses usually. But a couple of guys actually said, come sit with us. And so we ended up having lunch together and it was so lovely because we were having such an interesting conversation where it wasn't just about, oh, where are you from? How long are you going to be in town for? That kind of thing. But it was just really sort of interrogating some of the concepts that we were talking about from a very thoughtful perspective and I so appreciate that especially when there's privilege involved around identities, I think these were a couple older middle aged, you know. white men. And that's certainly a population which this work can be really meaningful for, challenging for, you know, what have you. And that's something that I just still have, you know, taken away with me from that time was just how even the people who weren't as into it as others, and there are always a handful of them, they were all just there. They were committed to being there. And I think that's really important. And it speaks to, you know, just Honestly, like how the organization approaches the work because you're showcasing it's important. You had your senior leadership there they were right there alongside everybody else they weren't dominating the conversation but they were also asking questions and getting engaged and all that's and I think just really important in this kind of work, it makes a big difference. So, Those are my memories of the day that we spent together.

(19:41 - 19:57) Katrina Loutzenhiser: I love that so much. I didn't know you got invited. Yeah, it was so nice. It was so lovely. Yes, it is a really lovely organization to work for. So I'm so glad that they engaged you even when it was like your off time, although I feel a little bad.

(19:58 - 21:25) Felicia Jadczak: Don't, please don't. That's what I'm there for, honestly. I got to chat with Amaya separately later anyway. And again, like that's important too, because that particular conversation was just more, it was more introspective and kind of just working through some concepts a bit more. But I've also had times similar to this where you know, people have really struggled with concepts, or they push back, or they've been stuck on stuff. And for me, as a facilitator, and as part of the work that we do, that's also just as important as a larger group discussion. Because to your point, you know, the mandatory, not mandatory dynamic is so challenging, and it's complicated. There's pros and cons. But sometimes it's not about the group, it's about the individual person. Because that individual person, like you said earlier, is going to go back into their team. And how the conversation plays out in a time like that is so critical because if it's not productive if it's not supportive. approach or thought or discourse as they would if you, if they had a different kind of experience. So as a facilitator with that hat on, I always think that's just as important. Sometimes even more so to be really honest, like sometimes it's honestly been a five minute conversation after the training happens. That's really made a break, you know, it makes or breaks it as opposed to three hours together. So anyway, that's just my, my little rant on that.

(21:27 - 21:40) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Yes, I agree it, it absolutely has made an impact and then the ability to engage in those five minute conversations since then, as it's made it much more accessible to to those who might find it more challenging.

(21:40 - 22:08) Felicia Jadczak: You touched on this already, Katrina, but one of the sort of outcomes of the work that we did together last year was requiring each department to come up with their specific action plan after the workshop took place. And I know you've shared a little bit with me about sort of outcomes, but could you share with us now and with our listeners what that process was like, how it's going, were there any challenges, were any successes, how did that sort of play out afterwards?

(22:08 - 23:56) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Sure. So everybody's plan was due December 1st. So the training was in October. They had like six weeks to meet with their teams and to say, OK, this is how we're going to apply it. And we did give them a template to make smart goals. They had to tell us what they were going to do, how they were going to measure it, who was going to be the point person. Right. So we did create a template. So we didn't get a who knows what kind of layouts you would get if you just open the door. Right. people were really, really thoughtful about their platform, how it would impact the work that they did. And so I think that was a big success, right? It wasn't generic. It was, this is what we do, and this is the changes we think we will need to make. And then another really big success was that there was a lot of overlap in goals from different departments, things that were either the same or very similar. And so we were able to connect different departments on those same goals. to one, not duplicate work, and then two, to make sure we were consistent in our approach so that everybody was doing the same thing, everybody was speaking the same language, everybody was engaging with staff or with volunteers or with members the same. And then probably a third big win is that in those joint conversations, we've realized that some of those are even bigger than those department goals and they've been elevated. to more senior leadership or a sense of the DEI team. to say, ooh, we actually can't give that to the departments. Like we need to have a more cohesive plan in place for whatever that initiative is. So I think those are three kind of big wins for us.

(23:56 - 24:32) Rachel Murray: I love that. I love hearing wins. It's important too. I mean, we don't usually get to hear, you know, we'll hear about some outcomes, some action going on after, but a lot of the, when we talk about, and we get asked this question a lot too, is, you know, what's the ROI of the training? I'm sure you heard this from Felicia in the training, and we've said it before, the work isn't the workshop. The work really happens after. So it's great to hear that that lives on and that you're doing important work afterward. And that language piece is so important too. Communication is key.

(24:32 - 25:02) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Can I just add that that was a push from the DEI team, right? Because leadership was like, yes, we should have classes. Yes, we should have a workshop. And I was like, well, that's not super useful unless we do something with the information. So there was a lot of like oh let's have a workshop and it was a push from the DEI team to say that's not enough like to do something with it. So there was that perspective that we had to kind of shift views on.

(25:03 - 25:32) Rachel Murray: Kudos, kudos, that is a hard battle, because yes, let's have a workshop, period, or maybe exclamation point. And then as Felicia just visually demonstrated, checkbox, checkmark, done. So with that, I'm curious, you know, you're a member organization, so you have some unique challenges, I'm sure, because you're considering not only staff, but also volunteers and members. Can you just share some of the unique challenges that you've encountered in terms of your DEI work?

(25:32 - 28:21) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Sure. I think I touched on earlier that we don't have any control over members or non member, not the way you would have over employees and making things a requirement so it does affect that. Of course we have control over what we produce. And so we hope that what we produce influences the people who are taking our courses, right? Our courses are inclusive. We're including three-dimensional characters that have lots of characteristics and affect how the nurses in our courses would treat our patients. And we want that to influence then nurses who go forward and treat patients who are three-dimensional people. And then specifically our volunteers help us create learning materials of any kind. And we've had to find ways to engage with them that helps them see how important this work is. So things like creating case studies, we've created a training specifically for volunteers, we've created templates, we've created processes for us to say, okay, you're creating this character in a case study and What is their age? What is their gender? What are their pronouns? What religion do they practice? What's their family history? And even if you don't use it or think it applies in the case study, it changes the conversation in the case study, what the nurse might say to the patient. And so by creating this template, the volunteers have to think about, a full person, which affects how the conversation goes inside the case study. So we've tried to institute processes that kind of create the foundation. And then we have like specific checks inside of developing learning activities that say, okay, everybody stop and look at this from a DEI perspective specifically. And what people really wanted was a checklist, like, okay, DEI team, come in and look. And what we've had to teach is that everybody comes to this work with a different lens. Asking the DEI team to do this work doesn't make any sense. All of you are full people with different backgrounds, and you're going to look at this differently. You need to, everybody needs to engage at this and look at it to find out if it is inclusive and accepting and treating people like full people. And so that's been a huge learning curve for the whole organization has to participate in order for this to be effective.

(28:21 - 28:32) Felicia Jadczak: That's so great. Thank you for sharing that. Yeah, it kind of leads me to my next question, which is what are your thoughts on the intersection between L&D and DEI?

(28:32 - 28:39) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Or do you think there is one? I think there is an intersection with DEI with everything.

(28:42 - 28:44) Felicia Jadczak: We obviously like to hear that.

(28:44 - 29:42) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Definitely. And I think I mentioned earlier, use your platform. It affects everything in this world. Your ability to exist in the world, your ability to engage with people, with your coworkers, with anyone. I think LMD has a special place for it because we are teaching people. And even if we're not teaching people about DEI, what we create affects people. And if it's not inclusive, then people don't feel included when they take that training, or they don't have the perspective of other people who might be affected. in their work after the training. So for L&D, I think we're in a really great spot to influence, and that's in the association world or in traditional L&D, because that's going to affect everybody's view of whatever it is you're teaching.

(29:43 - 29:59) Rachel Murray: This is completely related. So I wanna tie this in. So how do you think, how can you ensure that L&D opportunities are equitable and accessible to all employees regardless of their background or identity?

(29:59 - 31:33) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Sure. So some of it's accessibility, right? And that's important. Visually accessible, auditorily accessible. And some of that's a combination thereof, right? Learning, even for somebody with full eyesight and full hearing, doesn't happen one way or the other, right? That's integrated in people's brains and you have to be able to integrate what they're seeing and what they're hearing in a way that makes it accessible for what's going on in their brain. And some of that is also just pure accessibility, right? Closed captioning, transcripts, visually contrasting perspectives. There's also kind of interactions to learn that people process things differently and we don't subscribe to or believe in like learning styles, right? We're all complex humans with many different ways of learning. And so we create knowledge checks that address different ways of engaging with the information. And so even though you answered something over here that was maybe multiple choice, over here, you're gonna have to do a calculation and over here, you're gonna have to do a hotspot. And by creating different types of knowledge checks, It allows people to engage differently with the information that allows it to better integrate into kind of their mental structure and hang it on things that they already know.

(31:34 - 32:37) Felicia Jadczak: Yeah, that's so interesting because, you know, we definitely sometimes touch on learning styles in our work, even though, you know, again, while there obviously is an intersection, we're not pure L&D per se. But the takeaway I always like to hone in on is that, you know, it's not about just putting yourself in a small box and saying, this is my label and I can only learn in this way or I can only do things in this certain way. recognizing that there's a wide variety and a wide diversity of how we all show up and so there's ways to think about that. So I like the idea or the concept you just mentioned about the knowledge checks. That's really helpful to think about. Let me take a sharp turn, although maybe not so sharp. We've been talking a lot about AI recently, just in all different aspects. I would love to know what you think about AI in the context of the work you're doing and L&D, all this stuff. How does AI or technology play into your work or does it at this point?

(32:39 - 35:06) Katrina Loutzenhiser: or just technology in general, everything is technology, right? Yes, everything is technology. If your IT team doesn't work, then nothing works, right? Even this recording a podcast, all of our training is online. Even our physical books are all created through virtual engagements, right? Everything is done through technology. For us, short of everybody coming into an in-person workshop, right? Everything else. AI specifically, the organization is trying to take a measured approach. We know it's a space we need to be in because it exploded. The whole world is there. And some of it's easy, right? We've used it for We've used it for picture creation, right generation generative AI. We've used it for video creation, we've used it to create characters and horses. Instead of recording people, because it's really hard and time-consuming and expensive to record people, and then if you have to re-record or something like that, it's really hard. So you can use an AI-generated character and feed it a script, and it looks like a person who is speaking. Yes, there are some things that you go, that might not be a real person. But you have to think about it. For the most part, it looks like a real person. So some of this AI stuff is really easy to use generatively. But we don't want to currently put in any of our IP, which there's a lot of great stuff that we do that with courses and with books and journals, but we're not going to like feed our IP into some generic tool. So we have created an AI committee, and we have hired a director of AI to say, What should we be doing? How should we be doing it? How do we protect our hard-earned information that we want to share with the world, but in a way that is appropriate and for us to continue to exist as an organization, but we don't yet technically have an approach. We are working on that.

(35:07 - 35:42) Rachel Murray: I mean, that's huge that you have, you're already putting so much thought into it. And yeah, kudos to you for, for investing in this wild new frontier and recognizing that you don't want to feed the beast. Right, it really is. Curious what advice, so we're going to move off of AI since, you know, we've talked enough about AI, I feel like, in all of our pod, but I'm curious what advice you'd give to other L&D professionals who are considering integrating DEI principles and practices into their work.

(35:42 - 37:01) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Gosh, I feel like We've touched on so many of these, right? The important things are to be thoughtful about what it is that you create, right? Again, it's using your platform, integrating it into your processes and how what you do can make an impact on the people you serve. Yes, you're integrating principles and But it's going to look different for everybody. And so I think that it has to be from a thoughtful, it is not a checkbox, it is a thing you have to work at. It is also important to integrate it into processes. So it's not a one and done, it is. part of your fabric, part of what you do. And then also the DEI landscape changes, right? As we develop new language to better understand people and their dimensions, it's going to change and the language is going to change. And so it has to be part of your process to revisit that and educate yourself and think about it in different ways. So I think that's probably my biggest proponent. I get on a soapbox and tell people that they have to do that, but that's kind of where I come from.

(37:01 - 37:10) Felicia Jadczak: So what's next for you, Katrina? What are your future goals, aspirations, work-related or otherwise?

(37:10 - 38:10) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Well, I will say that I love my job. I love working in online education. So that is my continued path. But I'm also in law school. So that's a big piece of my life right now. And it will be somewhere in civil rights, because this is part of my life. And I don't really want to be a lawyer in any kind of a traditional sense other than having a JD and passing the bar. But I want to use my knowledge to give people a platform, to give people a voice who need a voice. So I don't really expect to change career paths, but I do think that this will affect my work and how I can leverage that knowledge for people. Yeah, it's like I said, DEI is integrated into every piece of my life. So this is just another step on that journey in my personal life.

(38:10 - 38:25) Rachel Murray: I mean, that is huge. Getting a deep understanding of the legal system with regard to this work and then being able to educate people on it is like mind blowing. I'm not only excited for you, but like for everyone that you touch.

(38:26 - 38:46) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Thanks, I appreciate it. I got into it because I was mad at the world, right? I was mad at our legal system. I still am, right? I don't want to pretend like that's fixed. But I was mad. And I felt like I couldn't do anything about it. And I had to learn more to be able to make the impact that I wanted to have. So that's beautiful.

(38:46 - 39:19) Rachel Murray: Well, you know what, I look forward to your future candidacy in running for office to change laws. Just going to put that energy out there. Not sure that's in the future, but. Well, you never know. You never know. Or supporting others. who are, who are aligned. We love to ask this question at the end is what do you geek out about? And it can't be anything work related. So now I'm like, are you going to talk about the law? Or do you want to talk about like, you know, the good wife, which is also related?

(39:21 - 39:53) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Well, unfortunately, between work and school, I also have a four-year-old, which I love, right? It's amazing. And he's actually home from school today, back on the couch. But it occupies most of my life. I don't have much time for other passions. But I graduate December 2025, so there are big things to free up my time. And I'm a salsa dancer. So I'm looking forward to getting back into dancing.

(39:53 - 40:03) Rachel Murray: Oh my goodness. Katrina. That's so many things. You need a time Turner. Yeah. I don't sleep. Right.

(40:03 - 40:07) Katrina Loutzenhiser: That's the moral of the story. Oh my gosh.

(40:07 - 40:24) Felicia Jadczak: Where can people find you if they want to learn more about, gosh, anything that you touched on? Law school, ONS, L&D, your DEI work, salsa dancing. Where can people find more or connect with you? Or do you have anything that you'd like to plug?

(40:24 - 41:10) Katrina Loutzenhiser: Well, the best way to connect with me is my email. If they want to email, that'd be great. I'd love to hear from people and I'd love to answer questions. And in terms of plugging, I feel like I've mentioned that I love my organization. So if a nurse is listening and thinking about doing oncology nursing, it's an amazing group of people. And also, if you're thinking about, you know, a job that is more meaningful. I love working for my organization, it is mostly women, it is run by women. And I got to say, when I started there six years ago now, my imposter syndrome almost entirely disappeared. It's amazing. So like, if you're looking for a job also, I feel like I would plug the organization for that as well.

(41:10 - 41:19) Rachel Murray: I love that. I love that. Yes. Excellent. We will, we probably know some people, so we'll pass it along.

(41:20 - 41:34) Felicia Jadczak: Thank you so much for chatting with us Katrina. Thanks Katrina. Super appreciate it. All right, we hope you enjoyed listening to our interview with Katrina as much as we enjoyed having that follow-up conversation.

(41:34 - 41:52) Rachel Murray: Thank you so much for listening and please don't forget to rate, share and subscribe. It truly makes a massive difference in the reach of this podcast and by extension this work. Visit us on YouTube, Instagram, LinkedIn, sgolearning.com and shegeeksout.com to stay updated on all things SGO.

(41:53 - 42:02) Felicia Jadczak: And if you still want to learn more, sign up for a mailing list and don't forget to grab that free code for one of our many courses. All right. See you later. Bye.