William Liao

March 20, 2021

Her.

“Her.”
It wasn’t just one specific aspect of his mother that he felt the absence of, it was the totality of her existence — every exchange, every mannerism, every facet — that is now gone forever.

Think about that for a moment. 

We’re in a remarkably connected world made possible by online networks where we can share with others our adventures, our careers, and any other aspect of life that brings us joy. 

I get it. 

But please understand that humanity is the foundation on top of which any of these vibrant and exciting aspects of our world are possible
: your companies are run by people, it is people who buy your products, it is people who invest in your ideas, it is people who generously share career advice…

My point is this: because everything you cherish is driven by humanity, it is imperative that you give issues that are challenging humanity the same air time at the very least as you do everything else.

London School of Economics Professor Paul Dolan and colleagues published a great paper on how behavior is influenced and there are two points in particular worth highlighting: 

  1. People are heavily influenced by who communicates information to them. 
  2. People are strongly influenced by what others do.

You are on both sides of the equation: you are a recipient of the words and actions of others and you are the giver of words and actions to others.

You’re in a network — a culture of people with evolving values and beliefs that are fundamentally shaped by what actions are taken and what ideas are exchanged. 

So when you act, remember that your actions ripple. 

When you speak, remember that your words ripple. 

Even when you’re silent, that ripples too. 

That’s the kind of power you wield in this world. Your decision to act and speak compassionately is key to nourishing the best possible version of a world where everyone can thrive. 

The message I want to share with you: 

The rise in attacks against Asian-Americans has been on my heart and on the hearts of millions of others in the Asian-American and Pacific Islander community.

Many in the AAPI community are frustrated, angry, sad, and terrified.

Randy Park’s life will never be the same.

Here’s what you can do: you can educate yourself on the history of anti-Asian racism and violence and donate to both the victims of these recent crimes and the institutions established to fight racial inequality. 

Here’s what you can say: let your AAPI friends, family and colleagues know that you hear them  — recognize the presence of human suffering and let them know that they are not invisible. You can also empower others to become more aware and compassionate by letting your clubs, companies, and teams know what’s going on in the AAPI community as well. 

Your voice and actions breed awareness. Awareness breeds compassion. Compassion breeds acceptance, tolerance, and healing. 

See where I’m going with this? 

Thank you.