Entries by Heather Ishikawa
Historically, it was taboo to discuss politics in the workplace. Instead, Americans would play it safe and discuss sports. The biggest conflict would be which team was favored over the other. It all changed this weekend when football couldn’t be discussed without talking about political positions.
On Friday, during a campaign rally for U.S. Senator Luther Strange President Trump suggested that the NFL should fire players who protest by kneeling during the national anthem.
This caused a tweet storm between players, owners and President Trump and ultimately sparked an increase of protests. The protest spread into the sports of baseball and basketball this weekend for the first time.
Trump suggests that, “this has nothing to do with race…this has to do with respect for our country.” On the other side of the conversation, the athletes feel that they are standing together in non-violent protest about social injustice. Many who knelt say they support the military, consider themselves patriots, and are exercising their right to free speech.
The lack of productive discussion around this topic is building the divide between people and reinforcing us/them thinking. As the conversation spills into our work environments, employers are struggling with how to respond. In general, we have not taught our employees how to talk about differences in a respectful and productive way. We don’t provide many opportunities to share stories and reach understanding which compounds the divide in the workplace.
Now is the time to have productive discussions around the topics of diversity, equity and inclusion. It starts with genuine curiosity and suspension of your own perspective to explore someone else’s.
A few questions to start the conversation:
- What is your response to current events surrounding the athletes’ actions?
- Why do you hold that perspective?
- What experiences have you had in your life that contribute to how you think about this issue?
- How do you feel about what is being said and done by all parties?
- What information would you like to gain to understand the situation better?
Enact Leadership is proud to support the UCSF School of Medicine Differences Matter Initiative. This summer, we worked in partnership with the Dean’s Diversity Leaders to facilitate Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Champion Training to 200 faculty and staff.
Four full-day sessions have been implemented so far, with more in-depth training planned over the coming months to educate participants on creating an equitable and inclusive learning environment. From this group, a subset of faculty will be identified to lead further training. The goal is to enhance individual and group awareness, alignment, action and accountability toward lasting change as part of Differences Matter.
Intelligence Quotient (IQ) has been a measure of cognitive function for over a century. Many organizations assess IQ as one component of their selection process to predict future success in leadership roles, scholastic programs and/or occupational training initiatives. Several gold standard assessments used for measuring IQ dimensions include the Watson Glaser Critical Thinking Appraisal (deductive reasoning), Raven’s Progressive Matrices (inductive reasoning) and Athena Numeric Reasoning Assessment (numeric reasoning).
Recent studies suggest that in addition to IQ, Emotional Quotient (EQ) or Emotional Intelligence (EI) is also a key indicator to predict future job performance. Employees who exhibit emotionally intelligent behaviors, tend to motivate and encourage others and thrive in leadership roles. Advance Systems posted an interesting article on EQ and the Future of Work.
Organizations (especially in High Tech) find that ideal workers have a highly analytical brain but also carry the attributes of an emotionally intelligent person. They are skilled at managing their emotions in stressful situations and can also assess and react to the emotions of others.
Over the past few years Enact Leadership has been engaging in Diversity, Equity & Inclusion consulting, training, and coaching work in a variety of organizations. These organizations span multiple industries/sectors including: healthcare, retail, financial services, consumer product goods and not-for-profits.
As we continue to develop better solutions to this organizational and societal challenge/opportunity, we would like to learn more from an even broader set of organizations.
We are inviting you to participate in a very short survey to share your thoughts and experience in this important work.
In return, we will share our results with you. We look forward to continuing to serve your efforts to create more diverse, equitable, inclusive and successful work environments.
Thank you in advance for taking the time to participate!
Enact Leadership helps organizations and their leaders build diverse, equitable and inclusive cultures. We work with organizations and individuals to move beyond awareness and drive action. Enact has created the 4A’s Model to solve the toughest organizational challenges in this domain.
Self-examination about an individual and organization’s world view. What is the individual’s personal story? How do they see the world? How did this shape their biases and impact micro-aggressive behaviors? What data has the organization gathered? What is the specific context and opportunities do they see?
In this phase, we work to align participants within their specific teams as well as to align to the organization’s larger stated goals. It is not enough to simply state the organization’s goals. Each individual needs to understand his/her role in creating an inclusive work culture.
Diversity and inclusion initiatives require conscious action through courageous conversations. Enact focuses on a variety of hands-on activities, tools and techniques to help individuals take action, engage in courageous conversations, and seek opportunities to be allies for others.
For any initiative to be successful, there must be personal accountability. Our approach teaches leaders how to hold themselves and others accountable, deliver on commitments and address the impact when those commitments aren’t met.
Enact’s 4A’s model is the foundation of our Inclusive Leadership Programs. We offer organizational solutions to meet a variety of diversity, equity and inclusion needs. Whether you want a workshop to introduce the topic of inclusion or you are looking to launch an organization-wide strategy, Enact can help.
Overview of Enact’s Best-Selling Inclusive Leadership Programs
Power of Inclusion:
One to three-day format focused on creating sustainable results on diversity, equity, and inclusion goals. Our program leverages Enact’s Inclusive Leadership Assessment to improve self-awareness, organizational alignment, accountability and tangible actions for ongoing change.
One-day program focused on intercultural sensitivity and how to work across cultures. The Intercultural Development Inventory is incorporated into the program. This workshop is ideal for global teams.
Half-day or one-day workshop focused on generational differences. This program enables individuals to work side-by-side with colleagues from all generations, leveraging the differences to engage values, mindsets, skills and behaviors to ultimately drive results.
Half-day or one-day session about how to lead courageous conversations and create brave spaces in the workplace for diversity, equity, and inclusion topics
In addition to these popular programs, Enact also provides consulting services to help innovative leaders and human resource executives build a strategic roadmap to create a culture that values diversity, equity and inclusion.
Are you interested in learning more? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Corporate culture is one of the top talent challenges facing business leaders. Some organizations in an effort to create an ideal corporate culture, experience unintended consequences caused by hiring a homogenous group of employees.
For example, Brian Scudamore, CEO of 1-800-GOT-JUNK, fired his entire organization in 1994 because he didn’t feel that he had the right people on board. He then implemented a “Beer and Barbeque Test” to hire new employees. He invited candidates to a barbeque so that he could talk casually with them over a beer. His intention was to find ambitious and driven individuals who mirrored his values.
The challenge is that this approach to recruitment creates a ‘similar-to-me’ hiring bias. Did he invite individuals who were completely different than him? Did he spend time working to understand the viewpoints of the candidates who challenged his ideas and thinking? I don’t know the answers to these questions. I do know that it concerns me that other organizations will see this approach as a great recruitment model. This approach can lead to a corporate culture where everyone gets along but there is limited innovation and creativity. Diversity and inclusion efforts within organizations must be intentional or they will be impacted by unconscious biases.
Amy’s Kitchen recognized for having No. 1 Corporate University and included in Winners Circle for Innovation in Deployment of Leadership Programs. Enact Leadership leveraged its best-in-class content to co-design the Amy’s Leadership Academy.
NASHVILLE, Tenn., March 15, 2017—Enact Leadership partner Amy’s Kitchen was honored by the LEAD Awards for having the No. 1 Corporate University and included in the Winners Circle for Innovation in Deployment of Leadership Programs.
The LEAD Awards, formerly known as Leadership Excellence Awards, annually identify and recognize the top leadership programs and organizations and their strategies and solutions.
Enact Leadership has partnered with Amy’s Kitchen for the past 5 years, and co-designed the Amy’s Leadership Academy by leveraging Enact’s best-in-class content.
“When we partnered with Enact, it was important that they truly understood and reflected our strong culture throughout our leadership development program,” said Cindy Gillespie, Amy’s Kitchen vice president of human resources. “Enact proved to not only ‘get it,’ but also provided the insights and flexibility to develop a leadership development program that is fun, engaging, truly exhibits our culture and has helped us to develop a community of leaders. We consider Enact true partners.”
This year’s LEAD Award winners were published in the February edition of the Leadership Excellence Essentials e-publication. Future issues of the Leadership Excellence publication will also feature interviews from select top award winners in each category.
LEAD award recipients were selected based on an application or nomination process, reviewed by HR.com’s expert leadership panel, as well as feedback from the program’s participants.
Amy’s Kitchen has pioneered the organic food movement since its founding in 1987 and remains a privately held, family-owned business committed to offering family recipes, made-by-hand at an accessible price. Amy’s Kitchen offers over 250 varieties of organic frozen and packaged foods, and is proud to offer options across gluten free, vegan, dairy free, lactose free, soy free, tree nut free, corn free, Kosher D, Kosher DE, and light in sodium categories. Amy’s products are widely available in the U.S. as well as more than 25 other countries around the globe. To find Amy’s products near you, please visit our website.
About Enact Leadership
Enact Leadership, Inc. is a women-owned leadership development firm. As proactive partners we unite what’s happening and what’s possible to formulate leadership development strategies with our clients that move beyond ‘fixing leadership problems’ to ‘creating leadership excellence’. We utilize measurable data, proven program content and exemplary facilitation and coaching to generate superior individual, leadership and organizational results. Visit enactleadership.com or email@example.com for more information.
“One of the greatest challenges facing our nation and our institutions is the increasing diversity of our society.” (Sue, Bingham, Porche-Burke & Vasquez, 1999, p. 1062). The workplace is much more complex today than it was five years ago due to globalization, cross-cultural teams, multiple languages, changing demographics and persistent forms of subtle discrimination (micro aggressions). “To choose not to engage in dialogue about diversity in almost any modern organization is just plain dumb.” (Davidson & Ferdman, 2001, p. 36) However, even in the best intentioned learning organizations, led by competent leaders, many diversity initiatives fail to have sustained results. Why?
The most common reasons include:
- Absence of a diversity/multicultural OD framework
- Lack of integrative practices
- Lack of skill and self-awareness by OD practitioners
- Lack of awareness, competency and attitude to confront systems of power and privilege (Rasmussen, 2006; Romney, 2008; Rowe 1990).
At Enact Leadership, we pride ourselves in the extensive research that we have conducted to help organizations embrace diversity, inclusivity and equality. The key to our success is experienced facilitators who possess deep self-awareness and social astuteness. This means that ever Enact facilitator must closely exam their cultural values, biases and assumptions and recognize how these experiences and perceptions shape their world views.
Are you looking to roll out a diversity and inclusion effort at your organization? Let Enact help you. firstname.lastname@example.org
Interested in reading more? Check out:
- Employee Responsibilities and Rights Journal, 3(2), 153-163. Sue, D.W., Bingham, R., Porche-Burke, L., & Vasquez, M. (1999).
- Strategies for Managing Human Resource Diversity: From Resistance to Learning, Academy of Management Executive, 13, p. 69. Davidson, M.N. & Ferdman, B.M. (2001).
Enact Leadership is proud to be a women-owned consulting business. We pride ourselves on hiring the most talented individuals, seeking to leverage differences of race, sexual orientation, religion, age, gender, disability status and other dimensions of diversity. We understand that a truly inclusive culture demands self-awareness, humility, curiosity and openness, and we work hard to bring those values to life every day in service of a better world.
Thank you to all women who have worked hard for diversity, equity and inclusion and the men who have supported their efforts along the way.