Recap of the Diverse Speaker Training group (#WPDiversity) on April 22, 2020


I got the funding renewal! The new direction for our team for the next while. How the workshops went last week. I need a volunteer to make a notes document about the Online Stage Presence workshop. Upcoming events: Group coaching; All-women train the trainers in Latin America; TBD our group’s workshops & coaching schedule for the next few months


Attended: @jillbinder @cguntur @anyssa


  1. How are you?
  2. New direction
  3. a) How the Diverse Speaker workshops went last week
    b) Online stage presence notes: needs a volunteer
  4. Upcoming events a) Group coaching; b) All-women train the trainers in Latin America; c) TBD our group’s workshops and coaching schedule for the next few months
  5. Open: Reports on what you’ve been doing, thoughts about the new direction, or anything you want to talk about

1. How are you

I was alone at this point in the meeting. I talked to myself about how I’m doing. 🤣

2. New direction

I just got the green light yesterday from Automattic for another year of funding, May 2020 – April 2021! Woohoo!

This is in addition to some funding to support these efforts from GreenGeeks, as well.

Yay to both companies!

My funding from Automattic was based on a new plan to carry out during these COVID-19 times.

As you may recall, we’ve talked about how WordPress event organizers are in no position to be learning a new workshop right now, nor to be thinking about diversifying their speaker lineups.

Individual WordPress community members, however, are looking for things to learn at home. Additionally, speaking at virtual WordPress events presents new challenges that we can help the potential speakers navigate.

The plan is similar to what we tried in April, with a few modifications.

Each month, I will carry out something in 3 categories.

CategoryCategory The 'category' taxonomy lets you group posts / content together that share a common bond. Categories are pre-defined and broad ranging. 1: A workshop:

  • Diverse Speaker workshop (like I did last week), or
  • Creating a Welcoming and Inclusive WordPress event online, or
  • Hold your own Diverse Speaker workshop for meetupsMeetup Meetup groups are locally-organized groups that get together for face-to-face events on a regular basis (commonly once a month). Learn more about Meetups in our Meetup Organizer Handbook. (like our usual work pre-COVID)

Category 2: I will host:

  • Two 1-hour Zoom group speaker coaching sessions (like I’m doing next week), or
  • Two 1-hour SlackSlack Slack is a Collaborative Group Chat Platform The WordPress community has its own Slack Channel at (text) speaker coaching sessions, or
  • Two 1-hour diverse and inclusive events group coaching sessions on Slack (text), or
  • Training and supporting another member of the team to run a second monthly Diverse Speaker workshop

Category 3: Running our #WPDiversity group:

Onboarding and leading our volunteers and having our team carry out initiatives that are still important during these times, such as:

  • Oversight of a 1:1 speaker mentorship program
  • Training material translation efforts
  • Marketing
  • Other initiatives

3 a) How the Diverse Speaker workshops went last week

Last week I did a trial run of doing three 1-hour Diverse Speaker workshops 3 days in a row. They went excellently!

26 people attended
from 21 cities in 6 countries

  • Bulgaria
  • Costa Rica
  • India
  • Italy
  • Nigeria

A special thank you to @cguntur for doing administrative tasks before and during the workshops, and for watching to start learning how to run it in the future.

I also measured self-reported public speaking confidence scores before and after participants attended a workshop. They went up 34%!

We had a pretty good rate of return on the post-workshop follow-up questionnaires as I let them know they would receive our Speaker Mentorship Program & Resources if they sent it in. So about half who attended sent it in!

3. b) Online stage presence notes: needs a volunteer

I’m looking for a volunteer for a task. Does anyone want to get to know the online stage presence material really well?

A participant asked for the notes from the class.

Can someone create a document with a bullet list of the points?

You’ll have access to the slides, my notes to myself, and the recording from the session.

4. Upcoming events

Really cool events coming up being put on by our team (or by me):

a) Next week, I am holding two diverse speaking group coaching sessions on Zoom:

  • Tuesday, April 28 @ 9am Pacific
  • Thursday, April 30 @ 12pm Pacific

More info and registration is here:

All folks who work with WordPress and who identify as being from a marginalized or underrepresented group in tech are welcome.

We already have 8 signed up for Tuesday!
And 1 for Thursday.

(So if you’re not sure which day to attend, I do recommend Thursday.)

b) I am holding a “Hold your own Speaker Diversity Workshop” (aka our Train the Trainers) for women WordPress meetupMeetup Meetup groups are locally-organized groups that get together for face-to-face events on a regular basis (commonly once a month). Learn more about Meetups in our Meetup Organizer Handbook. and WordCampWordCamp WordCamps are casual, locally-organized conferences covering everything related to WordPress. They're one of the places where the WordPress community comes together to teach one another what they’ve learned throughout the year and share the joy. Learn more. organizers of Latin America!

This women empowerment event is being put on by GreenGeeks.

It is on Saturday, July 11.

I posted about it on LinkedIn this morning, and I’ll be posting about it on Twitter later today. I would love the retweets to help us reach the community in Latin America.

It’s a big issue of not having much female representation in the communities in WordPress in Latin America, and GreenGeeks is seeking to change this with the Diverse Speaker workshop so that we can get more of the female talent on (virtual) stages.

@cguntur: Really good news about the women empowerment in Latin America

@jillbinder: Thanks, @cguntur! It’s great news and a really cool initiative, for sure.

@anyssa: This is really nice @jillbinder! A question: what will be the official language of the event?

@jillbinder: Thanks, @anyssa! This one will be in English. We’ll have a translator or two who can help people out, but it’s best if people can follow in English for this one.

@anyssa: OK! I’ll share it when you post it

c) The WordCamp DeputiesDeputy Community Deputies are a team of people all over the world who review WordCamp and Meetup applications, interview lead organizers, and generally keep things moving at WordCamp Central. Find more about deputies in our Community Deputy Handbook. and I are going to work out what will be the workshops and coaching plan for our team for the next few months, now that the funding and contract is being secured. But first we need to finish that paperwork.

@jillbinder: I’m so pleased that our team can still be supporting the WordPress community during this difficult time. There are still WordPress events online, and diverse leadership is always needed, perhaps now more than ever – which is one of the direct results that happens from people who take our workshop – and so our work is still very needed.

5. Open: Reports on what you’ve been doing, thoughts about the new direction, or anything you want to talk about

@jillbinder: @cguntur You’ve been one of the few people who has still been busy on our team during this transition!

@cguntur: I have been monitoring HelpScout

@jillbinder: You have been doing quite a few more things for us, too. You did admin before and during the workshops, you are coordinating the speaker mentorship program, you’re replying to questions on Helpscout…

@cguntur: I actually have a few more things on my mind… would love to talk to you about it @jillbinder

@jillbinder: That sounds great, @cguntur! Let’s schedule a chat.