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How Sharing Power Builds Power

What is power and how does it show up in our daily lives
as designers? When is it generative? When is it destructive? What happens in organizations when we upend traditional power structures and give away power, instead? What happens when we share power with those who’ve historically been excluded from it? What happens when we center BIPOC power and excellence?

In this honest and energizing conversation, Dianne Que, Timothy Bardlavens, and Charlene Martinez discuss how they experience and share power, and how they show up for their communities in design and higher education.


  • How intersectional identities influence the ways in which we experience power
  • How design thinking, innovation, and tech uphold white supremacy culture
  • What sharing power looks like in practice
  • Timothy Bardlavens and his journey to no longer code-switching in the workplace
  • Charlene Martinez describes the power of storytelling in healing
  • Dianne Que discusses transparency and inclusive hiring practices


  • Native Land Map
  • The Purpose of Power by Alicia Garza
  • White Supremacy Culture by Tema Okun
  • Emergent Strategy by adrienne maree brown
  • Story Circles Toolkit (Oregon State University)
  • &Design
  • Creative Reaction Lab
  • Navigating Whiteness by Timothy Bardlavens
  • Written by Dianne Que, Head of Product Design Operations @ Zendesk
    Photo by Jake Givens on Unsplash

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