No matter where you sit in a company, you can play a role in helping it move forward with its diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) initiatives. We who work in the global mobility and talent management functions in our respective companies could start with getting better educated and more inspired. Per this Worldwide ERC article, we can join in celebrating the "too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans." There is no time like now, in the midst of Black History Month, to get started or move things further ahead by increasing our awareness toward the realities of racism in this country.
The article goes on to suggest that critical conversations need to happen, and that "the toughest conversations bring the biggest breakthroughs." Here at Plus Relocation, our Conversations for Change Wellbeing Committee has the mission to lead respectful and engaging conversations pertaining to the stories and struggles for diverse groups of people, and provide opportunities for participants to learn and make a change. Underlying the committee is the desire to build positive cross-company relationships, raise engagement and elevate health so we can all bring our best to work and take our best back into our personal lives.
Where and how does your corporate DE&I strategy address racial justice? In this Harvard Business Review article, while there is acknowledgment that some progress has been made, there is a suggestion for a better approach for moving toward a racially just workplace. It starts with considering the current reality, which is that "according to both quantitative and qualitative data, working African-Americans — from those laboring in factories and on shop floors to those setting C-suite strategy — still face obstacles to advancement that other minorities and white women don’t. They are less likely than their white peers to be hired, developed, and promoted. And their lived experience at work is demonstrably worse even than that of other people of color." The approach is a four-step strategy to help companies move toward greater and better representation for black leaders.
Here are those four steps, but I encourage you to go to the article to read a more about each of them:
- Shift from an exclusive focus on the business case for racial diversity to embracing the moral one,
- Promote real conversations about race,
- Revamp diversity and inclusion programs,
- Better manage career development at every stage.
Stepping back to the ERC article, I'd advise you to review the suggestions for sharpening DE&I efforts and supporting black employees. Per the article, "Black History month can not only educate, but inspire. Such inspiration can lead to opportunities for employers and leaders to have critical conversations and create well-rounded DE&I strategies that boost Black employees not just during Black history month, but every month of the year."
For additional content on the topics of diversity, equity and inclusion within mobility, check out our latest report: Mobility Strategies for a New Era: Why Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Should Top the List.
Also, check out these other recent posts:
- How can global mobility get started with supporting diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I)?
- Tapping into the power of language to support inclusion
- DE&I is ready for mobility — are we ready for DE&I?
And lastly, if you are looking for some additional reading, try Time's "The 25 Defining Works of the Black Renaissance." Their 10-person panel of some of the era’s most influential figures compiled this list of 25 works that have defined the current Black Renaissance, and they range from art to books to movies to TV shows to music albums or compositions!
February is Black History Month, also known as African American History Month, a time to celebrate the rich, diverse history of Black Americans and their achievements. A month dedicated to the ways Black Americans enrich the country, and the world, with their voices and contributions, is just the beginning. From our schools and our workplaces to our everyday lives, Black History Month is a time to learn, celebrate, and ignite years-long discussions and actions for Black Americans.