At Boka Restaurant Group, the work of diversity and community is a humbling journey centered around listening, learning, and taking action. It is not about checking a box, but having ongoing difficult conversations and education to hold ourselves accountable for our teams and our guests with a focus on the BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities. Our pillars of Belong, Reach and Give provide the guiding purpose for this work through the following action goals:
We actively work with all facets within our restaurants to ensure we are providing safe, welcoming and thoughtful spaces for our teams, with a focus on BIPOC and the LGBTQ+ communities to thrive.
We work to implement more recruiting, professional development and career development opportunities for BIPOC and the LGBTQ+ community in all positions, including leadership roles.
We partner with community organizations that support BIPOC and the LGBTQ+ communities for the Boka Gives initiatives to provide financial support and resources
We consciously partner with community organizations that focus on BIPOC and the LGBTQ+ community for our monthly Boka Gives initiatives, where we provide financial support, increase awareness and provide educational material and resources for our teams and guests to continue supporting these special organizations.
Michelle is leading our efforts to assess and improve company practices and policies, ongoing company-wide training, mentorship opportunities, giving initiatives, and internal communications.
Michelle joined BRG in 2011 as Director of Events for Balena. She has since navigated the events world as part of the opening team for Dutch & Doc's and most recently The Hoxton. Before joining BRG, Michelle had an illustrious career including time spent in HR staffing as well as diversity and inclusion training for Limited Brands. Outside of BRG, Michelle spends time as a professional lifestyle coach.
Providing mentorship through authentic conversations, building relationships, providing ongoing professional coaching and resources
Leading conversations with our bipoc/ lgbtq+ community to feel safe and heard within their environments
Working with our leaders to create better work environments, communication and understanding of each other for their teams
Collaborating with the human resources support team on the ongoing development of policies and practices on how they can impact bipoc and the lgbtq+ communities
Establishing a diverse team of human resources and restaurant leadership to lead employee conversations/ investigations when sensitive issues arise
Facilitating exit interviews with employees to candidly share their experiences and acting on their feedback
Working with leaders of the dei field to create custom diversity training for company leaders and company-wide
Ongoing participation in dei programs to further our internal education and professional development
Educating and developing pronoun usage as well as identity training
Leading orientation and trainings for all new brg managers to set the expectations for creating safe, welcoming, and nurturing spaces for our teams
Developing intentional partnerships with schools and community organizations that serve bipoc and the lgbtq+ communities for recruiting and educational partnerships