How I turned my passion for social justice into an effective diversity, equity, and inclusion firm
Construct The Present (CTP) is an effective
DEI consulting firm specializing in all things change & learning. This is Alexis Braly James writing to you and I am the founder. I started CTP as a side-hustle because:
1. I had a need for additional money, my student loan debt was crushing me, and working as a teacher meant living paycheck to paycheck with little savings. I was unable to pay my bills, support my family, and occasionally eat out or attend a concert= all things that bring me joy.
2. I was becoming sad and angry at the school system. I needed a creative outlet to dream of a more hopeful future.
3. I was a workaholic and had no hobbies. In my mind the only thing to do was work more, so what else would I do? Construct The Present started as a side-hustle. I developed an equity assessment tool that focused on action-oriented outcomes using data that could be assessed through interviews, focus groups, and document reviews. I had a background of making data-based decisions for learning from my work as a teacher. As a teacher, I assessed students' knowledge and learning. From those assessments, I built learning plans. I love looking at data and seeing solutions. I believed I could follow a similar process to assess workplaces.
Over the last 7 years, I have expanded my dei solutions services, slowly moved away from teaching and more and more into consulting. Finally, in August 2020 I quit my part-time job and went all-in with Construct the Present as a business. It has grown and expanded in ways I didn’t know were possible. As a result, I have committed to focusing on what it would look like to deepen and expand the work of effective dei by growing CTP's impact.