Dolly’s first book, The Person You Mean to Be: How Good People Fight Bias (HarperCollins, 2018), received rave praise from Grit author Angela Lee Duckworth, Mindset author Carol Dweck, Give and Take author Adam Grant, Morehouse College President David Thomas and tennis icon and activist Billie Jean King, amongst many others. It has been covered on The TODAY Show, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, the 10% Happier Podcast, NPR, and many other media outlets. Dolly’s related TED Talk was named one of the 25 Most Popular TED Talks of 2018 and currently has more than 4 million views.
Dolly has been named one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics (a list that included Pope Francis, Angelina Jolie, and Bill Gates) by Ethisphere Magazine, a finalist for the Faculty Rising Star Pioneer Award by the Aspen Institute, and the recipient of the prestigious New York University Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Faculty Award (whose past recipients include Bryan Stevenson). As one of the most highly rated business school professors at New York University, she received the 2020 NYU Distinguished Teaching Award and the Stern School of Business Teaching Excellence Award in 2015.
Prior to becoming an academic, Dolly worked at Morgan Stanley, Time Inc., Scholastic, and Merrill Lynch. Dolly received a B.A. from Cornell University, where she earned a double major in Psychology and Economics and served as a two-time co-captain of the Varsity Tennis Team (1990); an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School (1994); and a Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior / Social Psychology from Harvard University (2006)
- The Person You Mean to Be: How Good People Fight Bias
Many of us believe in equality, diversity, and inclusion. But how do we stand up for those values in our turbulent world? The Person You Mean to Be is the smart, "semi-bold" person’s guide to fighting for what you believe in.
Dolly reveals the surprising causes of inequality, grounded in the “psychology of good people.” Using her research findings in unconscious bias as well as work across psychology, sociology, economics, political science, and other disciplines, she offers practical tools to respectfully and effectively talk politics with family, to be a better colleague to people who don’t look like you, and to avoid being a well-intentioned barrier to equality. Being the person we mean to be starts with a look at ourselves.
She argues that the only way to be on the right side of history is to be a good-ish— rather than good—person. Good-ish people are always growing. Second, she helps you find your “ordinary privilege”—the part of your everyday identity you take for granted, such as race for a white person, sexual orientation for a straight person, gender for a man, or education for a college graduate. This part of your identity may bring blind spots, but it is your best tool for influencing change. Third, Dolly introduces the psychological reasons that make it hard for us to see the bias in and around us. She leads you from willful ignorance to willful awareness. Finally, she guides you on how, when, and whom, to engage (and not engage) in your workplaces, homes, and communities. Her science-based approach is a method any of us can put to use in all parts of our life.
Whether you are a long-time activist or new to the fight, you can start from where you are. Through the compelling stories Dolly shares and the surprising science she reports, Dolly guides each of us closer to being the person we mean to be.