Diversity is a tapestry that can be leveraged to create friendships, business relationships, and positive customer experiences. We are all different, even if we look the same. Diversity however, is analogous to an iceberg. We see part of the individual above the water, their gender, race, ethnicity, then underneath there is an intersectionality of culture, socio-economics, geography, faith, sexual preference, and an amazing number of variables that make us who we are. This whole self is who we bring to work, share with family, and how we interact with friends.
In the recent weeks, we have seen the undercurrent of a nation divided and one that is still a distance from full inclusivity. Many would suggest the division has long since been a part of the American fabric, and now it is simply in the spotlight. Starting conversations around diversity is imperative now, more than ever, as we look to move forward.
As individuals, coaches, and employers it is critical to be the catalyst to start conversations about our diversity. It can be an uncomfortable conversation, and it probably will be, the first time. In order that we may create an inclusive environment, we must lean in and embrace the opportunity to do so.
I acknowledge that Diversity and Inclusion is my wheelhouse and a space I am comfortable communicating in. This was not always the case, I stumbled, I had incorrect assumptions, and even asked questions that I thought were stupid. And, it was all OK, the reason? I was leaning into the conversation, leaving my previous understanding at the door, and opening myself up to new learnings. As each of us look to heal and move forward I invite you to do the same. Understand that there is implicit bias and years of misunderstanding that will be there. I encourage you to enter your conversations with grace and the goal of better understanding.
At Carolina Business Coach, we partner with organizations and individuals to foster conversations and create strategies for a diverse and inclusive workforce. If we can support you or your organization through workshops, crucial conversations, or individual coaching know we are here to offer our full expertise and commitment as you lean into your own journey.