Meet Mindbody: Committing to Wellness and Each Other Through Diversity, Equity, Inclusivity, and Belonging
I’ll be quite honest, before coming to Mindbody, I was only aware of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) as an idea woven into everyday life that all people deserve everything equally. It’s a naïve thought, sure, but not without its own truth and simplicity. It wasn’t until I joined the team here and dug in deeper that I fully understood the nuances and immense impact of what DEIB means to individuals, companies, and the world at large.
Welcome to another episode of Meet Mindbody, where we uncover more of what drives the Mindbody team and how they connect personally to the world of wellness. This week, I had the pleasure of speaking with Stephanie Wemusa, our director of DEIB to learn more about what sparks her passion for diverse workplaces, how these efforts strengthen the company, and what lasting impacts they can make on the wellness community at large.
Will Price: Hey Stephanie! It’s always a pleasure. Let’s start at the top: What’s your role at Mindbody?
Stephanie Wemusa: Hi, Will! Thanks for having me. I am the director of DEIB here at Mindbody.
WP: What brought you to Mindbody originally?
SW: Initially, I was hired onto the team to lead all DEIB Initiatives for Mindbody. Immediately, I saw there was a tremendous opportunity to make an impact on the Mindbody journey of diversity and where I could insert my professional and personal experience to broaden outreach and bring it to the world of wellness. Long story short, what brought me here was the incredible opportunity to bring my expertise to the table and truly make a difference in an industry that needs it.
WP:Why are you passionate about DEIB efforts (in the workplace and in the world)?
SW: I'm living it daily as I move through the world. The journey is both disheartening and hopeful, painful, and exhilarating all at the same time—I get to make a difference.
WP: What are the most significant things companies can learn from having DEIB programs and initiatives in-house?
SW: DEIB programs in-house show commitment and investment in moving the inclusion needle forward. Smart businesses know how DEIB contributes to the bottom line. It’s more than a box to check, it’s a true commitment.
WP: What does the DEIB program bring to Mindbody?
SW: This program is an opportunity for us to bring our authentic selves to work, therefore bringing our most productive selves to work, and an opportunity to align business with our quest to serve customers and increase our profitability. It's a win-win all the way around.
WP: What does the DEIB program bring to the world of wellness?
SW: We’re focusing our efforts on internal team members, as well as our external customers. We have an opportunity to walk the walk and talk the talk—truly set an example for how DEIB shows up in our day-to-day across the wellness industry. We engage in deliberate outreach to communities that need wellness—we all need wellness.
WP: What has been the most eye-opening/surprising moment for you so far being at Mindbody?
SW: My best friend actually turned me on to this role. She felt Mindbody would be an ideal spot for me, knowing how much I value a true work-life balance. So coming into Mindbody, I had this expectation that everything would be zen, you know? It’s a wellness company with a strong mission statement and a solid set of core values. But what I quickly realized was that Mindbody, at heart, is a technology company. And the company very much operates that way a majority of the time.
But this is also an opportunity that excites me. Because regardless of being a technology company, I see, day in, day out, just how engaged and committed our team members are to diversity, wellness, and each other. And that overshadows everything.
WP: What has been one of your proudest accomplishments at Mindbody to date?
SW: Good question. Since I started back in early 2021, three accomplishments come to mind:
- Our Employee Resources Group (ERG) Summit that we hosted after the ClassPass acquisition in late 2021. We spent a few days at our HQ in San Luis Obispo, bringing together our ERG leaders for Mindbody and ClassPass with the purpose of integrating their efforts, their groups, and, honestly, just truly enjoying one another while getting the important work done.
- Second, we brought a strong representation of all our ERGs to BOLD in San Diego in 2021. This was, and continues to be, a huge step forward to public-facing ERG involvement. We’re making our DEIB initiatives part of the fabric of Mindbody, not just a nice-to-have.
- Finally, we not only enacted Inclusive Leadership Training and Coaching for our Executive Team, but it was also embraced fully, applied daily, and influences our management teams across the board. This type of training, in my experience, is not typical for an organization, and it shows true commitment by those leading the way at Mindbody to do better.
WP: Mindbody's brand mission is to connect the world to wellness: How do you feel our DEIB efforts most help us accomplish this mission?
SW: Our DEIB efforts are in sync and alignment with our company goals of bringing wellness to all. We are being purposeful with these efforts and how our ERGs slot into our day-to-day. The good thing is, our leaders at Mindbody know that to truly connect the world to wellness, everyone must be able to access wellness. And we have buy-in across the board to do what it takes to connect as many people as possible—DEIB-led product updates, marketing integration, thought-leadership in the press, partnerships, etc.
As I mentioned, DEIB is becoming woven into the fabric of Mindbody one effort at a time.
WP: What does wellness mean to you?
SW: To me, wellness means the total alignment of purpose, effort, and goals personally, professionally, physically, emotionally, and mentally.
WP: In the coming months and years, where is the focus of our DEIB initiatives that will help shape the future of wellness?
SW: How we connect internally with team members to push towards our goals of inclusion and belonging, therefore retaining and engaging talent. Externally, with our customers, displaying how we are better by being inclusive, more engaging, more innovative, and more profitable.
WP: Finally, where can we go to learn more about DEIB? What news sources should we be tapping into to educate ourselves?
SW: I find many resources on LinkedIn (lots of my connections are working in DEIB) but I like to view Sundays with Verna, listen to Torin Ellis: The ROI of D&I Is Greater Humanity, I also recommend reading The 7 Habits of Inclusive Leaders by Melissa Majors, and Diversity in the Workplace by Bari Williams.
If you’d like to learn more about how diversity, equity, inclusivity, and belonging come to life at Mindbody, please visit the DEIB Resource Center.
Join our growing wellness community on Instagram.