This is how to shift…DEIB!
Some of yall like metrics so here you go: Forbes reported that, “60% of companies have metrics for DEI?” So what happened with the other 40%? For the record, I have been privy to the 60% group and I am proud at my clients who have stepped up to the plate and embraced DEI+B. If you are a part of the 40% and on the fence, I would like to share just a few recommendations that can shift us to 100%. It begins with a question, answer, action step and what you can do to go the extra mile.
Shift 1. Diversity
Question: Who is always in the room making decisions? Which identities are absent in the room making decisions?
Answer: Ensure African Americans and all identities are represented to and through the board. Diverse representation that reflects the community served in all level
Action step: CEOs take a moment and actually look at the identities of people who hold roles in meetings you are in. Take a closer look at who carries the roles, titles, and positions of people holding the space. You want to have authentic representation for you, your employees and your customers. What is wrong with leveling the playing field for those who have been historically excluded?
Go the extra mile →Replace and recruit board members aligned to antiracism and DEIB efforts. There is more than 1 person with deep pockets. One CEO said, “If they are not on board, they need to go.”
Shift 2. Equity
Question: Who never has to question whether s/he/they have access or opportunity? Who is always empowered? Who is absent from access or opportunity?
Answer: Embed African American and all identities to have access to opportunities and through the board.
Action: Board Members use the time to build connections outside your current network to ask what’s working in DEIB and what’s not in your industry while embracing opportunities to ask what else can be done.
Go the extra mile →Move away from felony and background checks as a part of the application process.
Shift 3. Inclusion
Question: Whose voice is always heard? Whose idea and voices are not always heard? If it’s the same voice then there is your root cause.
Answer: Allowing all identities ideas to share voice and ideas to and through the board.
Action: Managers ensure that the agendas include team KPIs or goals, roles and include protocols. Move away from solo presenting without hearing feedback from individuals on the team.
Go the extra mile → I loved sharing about my trip to Africa, but COOs can use the time to build connections inside your company and ask for and genuinely listen to ideas glows and grows of company culture. The point being it’s not just the People’s Teams job. It’s all of us.
Shift 4. Belonging
Question: Who always feels like they belong? Do people feel excluded or tolerated?
Answer: Encouraging all identities to feel a sense of pride and partnership to and through the board.
Action step: Chief People Officer use the time to shout out an employee who shared an idea, did a thing to build connections or solved a question that aligned to the KPI or goal. It’s that simple.
Go the extra mile →I loved getting a cool jacket, but have opportunities for team members to share about interest to get to know more about them and why they joined your company or organization. Why not do it at the all staff meeting? We did. We call these Chat and Chews or Lunch and Learns.
These are just a few of the recommendations I have provided when I train boards and organizations. They work. This is an effort of everyone including employees. Take the initiative and talk to your leaders-I did all the time. Ultimately, underlying each of these is the principle of how to undo racism at the individual, interpersonal and institutional levels.
I am LaTonya Davis, founder of TonyaDavis.com. I shift people from good intent to exceptional impact through speaking, coaching and training.