New Thinking

Read, watch, and listen to some of the exciting “new thinking” about Diversity, Equity & Inclusion!

Why the Most Common Diversity Programs Don’t Work

And what to do instead.

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Vernā Myers: How to overcome our biases? Walk boldly toward them

Our biases can be dangerous, even deadly — as we’ve seen in the cases of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner, in Staten Island, New York. Diversity advocate Vernā Myers looks closely at some of the subconscious attitudes we hold toward out-groups. She makes a plea to all people: Acknowledge your biases. Then move toward, not away from, the groups that make you uncomfortable. In a funny, impassioned, important talk, she shows us how.

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How to Promote Racial Equity in the Workplace

Many White people deny the existence of racism against people of color because they assume that racism is defined by deliberate actions motivated by malice and hatred. However, racism can occur without conscious awareness or intent. When defined simply as differential evaluation or treatment based solely on race, regardless of intent, racism occurs far more frequently than most White people suspect. As intractable as it seems, racism in the workplace can be effectively addressed. Because organizations are small, autonomous entities that afford leaders a high level of control over norms and policies, they are ideal sites for promoting racial equity. Companies should move through the five stages of a process called PRESS: (1) Problem awareness, (2) Root-cause analysis, (3) Empathy, or level of concern about the problem and the people it afflicts, (4) Strategies for addressing the problem, and (5) Sacrifice, or willingness to invest the time, energy, and resources necessary for strategy implementation.

How to Effectively — and Legally — Use Racial Data for DEI

After the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling striking against affirmative action in higher education, leaders might be concerned that their DEI initiatives and programs will face additional scrutiny and legal challenge. While reducing liability is a responsible move, the author cautions against letting these efforts lead to a fear-driven abandonment of effective DEI practices. To sustain DEI progress in this time, companies should focus on curtailing the usage of racial data that is the most legally risky, while taking decisive action to continue using racial data to eliminate discrimination, remove bias, and create fairer workplaces. The author illustrates how to curtail this risk, identifies five goals for this data use (to identify disparities, to remove universal barriers, to correct discrimination, to design fair processes, and to demonstrate DEI progress), and offers dos and don’ts for companies hoping to sustain DEI progress.



Michael Kimmel: Why gender equality is good for everyone — men included

Yes, we all know it’s the right thing to do. But Michael Kimmel makes the surprising, funny, practical case for treating men and women equally in the workplace and at home. It’s not a zero-sum game, but a win-win that will result in more opportunity and more happiness for everybody.

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Mellody Hobson: Color blind or color brave?

The subject of race can be very touchy. As finance executive Mellody Hobson says, it’s a “conversational third rail.” But, she says, that’s exactly why we need to start talking about it. In this engaging, persuasive talk, Hobson makes the case that speaking openly about race — and particularly about diversity in hiring — makes for better businesses and a better society.

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How to succeed as an HR leader: forget ‘best practices’ | Workable

Succeeding in a new HR role can be difficult. Former VP of Talent of BCBSMA, Su Joun, advises HR leaders to abandon best practices and standard approaches.

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Susan Colantuono: The career advice you probably didn’t get

You’re doing everything right at work, taking all the right advice, but you’re just not moving up. Why? Susan Colantuono shares a simple, surprising piece of advice you might not have heard before quite so plainly. This talk, while aimed at an audience of women, has universal takeaways — for men and women, new grads and midcareer workers.

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Angela Lee Duckworth: Grit: The power of passion and perseverance

Leaving a high-flying job in consulting, Angela Lee Duckworth took a job teaching math to seventh graders in a New York public school. She quickly realized that IQ wasn’t the only thing separating the successful students from those who struggled. Here, she explains her theory of “grit” as a predictor of success.

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Regina Hartley: Why the best hire might not have the perfect resume

Given the choice between a job candidate with a perfect resume and one who has fought through difficulty, human resources executive Regina Hartley always gives the “Scrapper” a chance. As someone who grew up with adversity, Hartley knows that those who flourish in the darkest of spaces are empowered with the grit to persist in an ever-changing w…

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Can Design Changes Help Eliminate Gender Inequality?

Harvard behavioral economist Iris Bohnet argues that, despite all the effort put into equality training programs, methods to eliminate sexism from the workplace just haven’t worked.