Jean-Claude Brizard is the President and CEO at Digital Promise, a non-partisan non-profit organization focused on shaping the future of education and advancing equitable education systems by bridging solutions across research, practice, and technology. Jean-Claude was recognized by the Carnegie Corporation of New York as a member of the 2023 Great Immigrants, Great Americans class. Jean-Claude joins Host Anthony Shop to discuss how to create meaningful change inside of a system and the importance of meeting influential community members where they are.
- The keys to making a difference are identifying the key “protagonists” and leaders within a community or group, understanding the different influential nodes within the community where these leaders cross paths, and discovering which specific levers can be used to result in different behavioral outcomes.
- Meet people where they are and communicate to them when and where they're willing to listen. Spend time with them and learn how they view the world from different perspectives.
- Create open communication channels to reach your community and for your community to reach you. Jean-Claude shared a great example of this when he spoke with students who called into his radio show about their bad lunches. Jean-Claude listened to them and showed that he cared by going to the school and testing the food himself. This way he could empathize and work with students to create a new, alternative solution that suited their needs better.
- Engage with people at every level of your organization regularly and listen closely to them. This gives you a better overall understanding of the state of the organization, which levers lead to change at which levels, and where issues could arise in the future.
- One person alone cannot overturn or revolutionize a system immediately by themselves and in opposition to everyone else in the organization. To create meaningful, lasting impact, you need to obtain the buy-in from everyone else. Without being bought into the vision, those within the system or organization won't work to further it.
- Don't back down or shy away from opportunities to have conversations with the people you're trying to help and need to work with. Even if they are upset and that might cause you some temporary discomfort, their ire and discontent can help you uncover problems that are hidden or hard to see from your vantage point.
Quote of the Show:
- “Every child is a work of art, we have to create masterpieces.” - Jean-Claude Brizard
- LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jean-claude-brizard-0080a810/
- Website: https://digitalpromise.org/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/BrizardJC
Creators and Guests
Anthony Shop believes in the power of people-centered branding and marketing to create a bright future. He chairs the National Digital Roundtable, the premier convener of digital innovators, leaders and policy shapers. Anthony also is the Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Social Driver, a digital services firm that helps companies and non-profits establish winning strategies with social media, websites, creative, and advertising. An enthusiastic presenter and teacher, he has led executive-level training for Amazon, PepsiCo, NASA, The British Embassy and the Bipartisan Policy Center. He has been recognized as an “OUTstanding LGBT Role Model” by The Financial Times, “40 Under 40” by The Washington Business Journal, and Business Leader of the Year by the DC Chamber of Commerce. A former newspaper reporter, Anthony was the first new media professional elected to the National Press Club’s Board of Governors. He currently serves on the boards of Leadership Greater Washington and LearnServe International. He earned his MBA from The George Washington University School of Business, where he teaches as an adjunct lecturer.
Jean-Claude Brizard is the President and CEO at Digital Promise, a non-partisan non-profit organization focused on shaping the future of education and advancing equitable education systems by bridging solutions across research, practice, and technology. Jean-Claude was recognized by the Carnegie Corporation of New York as a member of the 2023 Great Immigrants, Great Americans class.
Robert is an Executive Director for The Communications Board, an organization with the mission of providing high-quality professional development for every communicator in every location. He is also the Global Lead for Partnership Communications at Gensler, the world’s largest architecture and design firm. Prior to his current role, he performed executive and CEO communications for Gensler, and was the senior director of public relations and social media at the Urban Land Institute. He obtained an MA in Communications and an MA in History from George Mason University. He did his undergraduate studies at the University of Missouri-Columbia. In addition, Robert has taught communications at universities including George Mason University, West Virginia University, and the University of Florida. Robert currently serves as Immediate-Past President for the Public Relations Society of America’s National Capital Chapter (PRSA-NCC) -- the nonprofit’s largest chapter.