What Diversity Means to Us
Diversity, DEI, Inclusion. You can’t overhear a business conversation or read an article about the universe of work without one of those terms popping up. We’ve heard them so much that they’ve almost lost their meaning. It’s far too easy for us to signal we care with words rather than do the hard work to make those values a reality in practice, threaded through our teams, organizations, and communities. The Creative Executive aims to put action behind these words, and the first part of our effort was to define what diversity means to us.
Late in 2021, a Washington Post article detailing the racial gap in corporate America struck a chord. The Creative Executive has always been committed to helping build inclusive and psychologically-safe work cultures that create room for everyone to do great things. But, in 2020, we had to reckon with the fact that our coaching team and staff were almost exclusively white women. We committed to building a coaching collective that better reflects not what exists in corporate America because, frankly, it needs a lot of work, but an aspirational model of what we hope the future of the business landscape will look like. Race and gender are the foundation, but we have found that diversity is so valuable in multiple ways within our coaching team. Diversity manifests in our coaches’ sensibilities and client approach, their industry expertise, the languages they speak, their personal and cultural backgrounds, and their coaching methodologies, frameworks, and specialties.
As organizations built by and sustained by humans, diversity should be innate. We believe that everyone can have a seat at the table. But, our table might need to get bigger, and there might need to be some structure and accountability at the heart of our efforts. Honestly, we might need to throw out the old rule book. There’s no precedent for what we are and will experience as organizations and as a society going forward.
One thing is for certain. Sustained diversity initiatives are good for business, from hiring and retaining talent to leadership succession to financial returns. It’s imperative not to think of diversity initiatives as a line item, but rather as part of the holistic strategy behind your business. We love how Caroline Wanga, CEO of Essence Communications, talked about this at Culturati Summit 2021. Healthy companies don’t have a separate DEI approach, she said. They integrate this philosophy across the business from talent and professional development to the products and services they sell.
Your business’s bottom line, as well as its future growth, depends on your continued dedication and commitment to build meaningful work cultures that are inclusive, provide equity in opportunity, create a sense of belonging, and foster diversity in thinking, backgrounds, experience, and talents.
You’ll be hearing a lot from us this year, and we’re passionate about this subject, as it relates to the running of The Creative Executive as a business, but also in how we coach and support our corporate clients. We’re so proud of The Creative Executive team, and we can’t wait to introduce them to you. Follow us on LinkedIn as we debut our new brand campaign in the coming weeks.