CollabTalk Podcast | Episode 45


For Episode 45 of the CollabTalk Podcast, the conversation focused on the need for more focus on digital inclusion, and how individuals and companies can better reach the underserved and underrepresented through community activities. You can listen to the podcast above and follow me using your favorite app, such as Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Soundcloud, or the iHeartRadio app. Be sure to subscribe!

Joining me on this podcast:

  • Dr. Melissa SassiDr. Melissa Sassi (@mentorafrika), Chief Penguin of the Entrepreneur and Student Experience team at IBM, with a PhD in international business where she focused on digital inclusion of underserved & underrepresented communities. [LinkedIn]

A bit more detail on the topics covered in this episode:

  • Melissa shares some of her personal and professional experiences that lead to her current role at IBM [5:36]
  • We discuss her job title, and developing your own job descriptions [10:13]
  • Melissa shares details about her work with startups and entrepreneurs, and does some name dropping of some of the people involved [16:11]
  • We discuss some of the failures of modern education around innovation and critical thinking, and how this impacts digital inclusion [27:33]
  • One common problem is that people don’t know where to go to learn how to build a business, find partners, find funding [37:57]
  • Melissa outlines the entrepreneur and startup profile to be considered for her incubator program, and what is included with the program [46:12]
  • Building a community of entrepreneurs to support cross-collaboration [50:24]

Enjoy this week’s episode, and be sure to subscribe for more content like this every Friday, as well as interviews with Microsoft MVPs and Regional Directors every Monday. Thanks for listening!

Christian Buckley

Christian is a Microsoft Regional Director and M365 Apps & Services MVP, and an award-winning product marketer and technology evangelist, based in Silicon Slopes (Lehi), Utah. He is the Director of North American Partner Management for leading ISV Rencore (, leads content strategy for TekkiGurus, and is an advisor for both revealit.TV and WellnessWits. He hosts the monthly #CollabTalk TweetJam, the weekly #CollabTalk Podcast, and the Microsoft 365 Ask-Me-Anything (#M365AMA) series.