The Elephant in the Room
Transforming Companies by Eliminating the Taboo
The Elephant in the Room’s dynamic DEI workshops are the perfect addition to Open Eye’s suite of Services
Can one company take over the world? That’s the plan for The Elephant in the Room according to co-founder, Cherena Fox. She may laugh as she says it, but anyone can see how determined Cherena and co-founder, Keionna Baker, are to change the world with their diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) services. And with such an ambitious mission, we at Open Eye are certain that this incredible company will help broaden the positive impact we can have on our clients.
“We chose to become a partner of Open Eye because we fell in love with the people and the mission,” Keionna and Cherena say. “We’re really big on alignment and making sure that we take opportunities that align with who we are as individuals, as well as who we are as a company. With Open Eye, we realized that it’s a company that is dedicated to change, and of course with The Elephant in the Room, cultivating inclusive work cultures is what we do to help businesses get to the next level. Getting businesses and organizations to the next level of success seemed to be the silver lining that really reeled us in and made us excited to jump on board as Open Eye partners.”
A match made in high school, Cherena and Keionna have known each other for years, but co-founded The Elephant in the Room in 2019 after leading a DEI workshop for their employer. They soon realized their lifelong experiences with diversity, equity, and inclusion made them the perfect duo to educate and train companies on those very topics. “Because of the things we have experienced, we are experience-based,” Cherena says. “When you get The Elephant in the Room for a workshop, we’re going to create an experience for you. We’re in the business of not being boring.”
All of our collaborators at Open Eye are incredibly well-versed in their fields of expertise, and The Elephant in the Room is no exception. Rather than leading a typical company workshop or business meeting, Cherena and Keionna use their years of experience to “cultivate culture”, by creating fun and interactive experiences that will stay with their participants. “We help people realize similarities as opposed to just differences,” Keionna says. “The way that we present our workshops allows people to organically let that wall down because it takes the taboo piece out of having this conversation. It’s just storytelling and truth-telling and getting people to understand why talking about DEI is important.”
Providing our clients with the tools they need to be successful is our top priority at Open Eye, and that success often begins with a company’s employees. When a client collaborates with The Elephant in the Room, they’re making a substantial effort to care for the emotional wellbeing of their workers. “When it comes to diversity, equity, and inclusion, it’s not a trend,” Keionna says. “People who are part of these groups live this life every single day. It is important to do DEI on a consistent basis because women, people who are LGBTQ, people who have disabilities, and people of color will walk in this light every single day, not just when the world is talking about it.”
Not only are discussions of diversity, equity, and inclusion crucial for improving the overall lives of a company’s employees, they’re also beneficial to every company’s bottom line. “It’s important that companies invest in diversity, equity, and inclusion so that they can grow, their employees can be happy, and so they can be a pioneer in their industry,” Keionna says. “At the end of the day we want to shift culture, but we also want you to understand why shifting your culture is important so that you can make more money.”
Open Eye Managing Partner, Taylor Tricarico.
At Open Eye, we exclusively collaborate with industry-leading experts whom we truly believe will create the best work possible for our clients. We chose to partner with The Elephant in the Room because every single company, large or small, can benefit from their services. Plus, the energy they bring to every workshop and client can’t be beat.
DEI is for Everyone
“Everybody needs DEI, because it’s universal,” Cherena says. “When we see an all-white company, we automatically know they need us. When we see an all-Black company, they still need us.” But even companies that are already diverse can benefit from their services as well. “When we see a company that’s diverse, they also need us because there are experiences that the people who are part of their company, who are part of marginalized groups, are experiencing within the company that the executive team doesn’t even realize,” Keionna adds.
As for the future of The Elephant in the Room, Cherena and Keionna are definitely still set on taking over the world. “We want to expand our market outside of the local region and continue to saturate the lane that we’re in and be known as the go-to interactive diversity and inclusion company— the company that is very culture-focused when it comes to DEI,” Keionna says.
Open Eye is thrilled to be partnered with The Elephant in the Room’s dynamic and ambitious team, and we cannot wait to see the positive impact they have on our clients with their transformative services.