Andy Hinton is a lawyer who has had an expansive career across all facets of law. He was previously the vice president and chief compliance officer at Google Inc. Hinton currently serves as an advisor for #NotMe, a mobile solution company that empowers people to tackle issues of racism, discrimination, and harassment in the workplace. We spoke with Hinton about his role and how #NotMe is shifting the culture in corporate America.
As a member of the #NotMe board, what vision do you have that can help others?
One of the hardest things to do in terms of an enterprise and an institution’s efforts to try and address misconduct, is to encourage people to raise concerns when they see them. It’s simply impossible to guarantee that misconduct will not happen in an institution or an organization. It’s gonna happen, but the trick is how do you make sure that the organization has an opportunity to address and respond to it, which requires people to raise it. #NotMe, is an incredibly powerful tool to reduce the friction that exists in folks raising concerns when they see misconduct. It’s a mobile app designed to be supportive of the folks who are raising concerns, as opposed to other solutions that are much more in-depth toward supporting the organizations and institutions that have to respond to these concerns.
What do you think about the corporations making public statements and writing checks? What do you think we have to do to sustain these movements?
I’m all in favor of folks making new commitments and renewing old commitments to combat racism. I’m not gonna belittle that, and [I’m] even happier when they back those commitments up with their wallets. In terms of making it sustainable and actually genuine, I think you have to look at the nature of the commitments that are being made and the nature of the people who are making those commitments. Are the other folks who make this movement sincere and genuine in their desire to combat racism? One of the ways I can determine that is whether the commitment itself is something that can be measured and something that they can ultimately be held accountable for. I’m not a big fan of commitments that are draped in hyperbole, [because] they are far too susceptible to be spun and rationalized.
How can people use #NotMe?
#NotMe is an easy way to demonstrate to your stakeholders, employees, members of your organization, students, and the folks in your community, that you really want them to raise concerns and that you, in turn, want to make sure that the response to those concerns is fair and effective. One of the ways that #NotMe supports that is it provides the organization, the people who are responding to these concerns with feedback and evaluations based on the perceptions of folks who have raised concerns. If you went to #NotMe to raise a concern regarding a particular corporation, you would be able to see just how that corporation has done in terms of addressing concerns.