The Try Guys Try Out Inclusive Leadership during a Crisis


The Try Guys try out inclusive leadership during a crisis

Who are the Try Guys?


When my son sent a family text about the crisis enfolding the “Try Guys,” he was impressed I knew about them. Yes, I'm that hip mom! LOL!


The Try Guys blossomed out of Buzzfeed, where they got famous making videos attempting various activities for the first time. They began with trying on women’s underwear and expanded to things like testing their sperm count, taking care of babies, shaving their legs, nude modeling, wearing drag, makeup tutorials, etc. They are always entertaining!


What’s the crisis?


One of the guys, Ned Fulmer, crafted a reputation as a devoted husband and father. His wife Ariel often appeared with him and also created a spinoff group, the “Try Wives.”


The three other guys learned Ned was having an affair with one of their employees. Eugene Lee Yang, Zach Kornfeld, and Keith Habersberger moved on this immediately and announced that Ned is no longer a part of their company.


It’s clear in the video they did not make this decision lightly, and cutting him out of their videos and promotions will cost them a lot of money and labor.



How is this inclusive leadership?


I applaud the Try Guys for acting immediately on bad behavior and being transparent about it. This is inclusive leadership!


Too often rainmakers or other bigwigs behave badly toward other employees.

It could be sexual misconduct, anger issues, showing bias, or just being disrespectful to their employees. In my experience, most of the offenders are white men.


Why are they usually allowed to get away with this behavior?
  • Protecting the status quo

  • Conflict avoidance

  • Lack of inclusive leadership

  • Most decision makers are other white men

The Center for Creative Leadership says inclusive leaders commit to “ensuring all team members are treated equitably, feel a sense of belonging and value, and have the resources and support they need to achieve their full potential.”


Bravo to the Try Guys for walking their talk and living out their company values by making a difficult decision!

I help professional services firms avoid BORING and boost employee engagement, productivity, and readership. I translate technical, complex, and lackluster language into accessible, dynamic, story-driven text. Get known in your industry through outstanding thought leadership content. Walk your talk through outstanding, effective communications with your employees and clients.

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