Thank you for attending
Move Your Organization's
Diversity & Inclusion
with Joe Gerstandt
Joe Gerstandt brought his unique style, new clarity and new tools to organizational diversity and inclusion work during this half-day seminar in April 2014.
In case you missed it watch a glimpse here:
Joe was a Democrat and Chronicle Nextpert. See his guest essay here >>
FORWARD! is a workshop designed to equip participants to guide their organization or community forward, built around three interrelated and complimentary themes; authenticity, diversity and inclusion.
A real commitment to diversity and inclusion is rooted in an understanding of and a commitment to authenticity, as that is what we actually want to include in our organizations and communities; authentic, whole, engaged human beings. It is not nearly enough to have some ability to hire people that look, think or live differently than you do, they need to actually be able to be true to who they are at work. Even organizations with increasing diversity in their workforce tend to be very wasteful with this diversity as there is a great deal of unchecked pressure for employees to cover, conform and more quietly fit in.
A recent article in Harvard Business Review summarized research conducted by Kenji Yoshino and Christie Smith which shines some light on the importance of, and lack of, Authenticity in the workplace. Yoshino and Smith surveyed 3,000 employees in 20 large U.S corporations spread across 10 different industries. Every one of the organizations involved had a clearly stated commitment to inclusion. In spite of this, 61% of the employees surveyed reported feeling overt or implicit pressure to “cover,” or to be more like the mainstream (or less authentic). The article goes on to provide some specifics of what this covering looks like as well as its impact on the sense of self and commitment of these employees. Authenticity matters, and it is hard work.
Regardless of who they are, if two people are both willing and able to be authentic with each other, there is going to be difference (or diversity) between them. There is difference and commonality between all people, both of which have unique value to the individuals involved and the groups that they participate in. One of the core characteristics of diversity is that it invites conflict. The greater the diversity involved in a group or conversation, the greater potential there is for conflict. Whether diverse teams perform at higher or lower levels than less diverse teams has a great deal to do with their willingness and ability to have conflict in healthy and functional ways.
Authenticity is the work of being true to who you are, bringing more of your whole self to work and advocating the same for others. This requires you to understand diversity, its characteristics, and the impact that it has on individual, group and organization level interactions. And this enables you to be more inclusive as an individual and to contribute to an increasingly inclusive culture where you work or live.
Authenticity, Diversity and Inclusion…the road FORWARD!
Watch More of Joe's Videos
Intentions and Stereotypes