I believe Futurism is the “now what?” for Diversity and Inclusion. (D &I)
After 20 plus years of working with organizations on planning and executing their diversity strategies, we are beginning to see that inclusion has become a primary pillar to many organization’s working cultures.
And I keep hearing a similar statement from those leaders who have fully embraced the concepts of D&I, but are looking to maximize the effectiveness of or expand upon their existing diversity strategies.
Leaders are asking “Now what? “
While I have always been someone to look ahead and plan for tomorrow, it wasn’t until I read Bill Jensen’s Future Strong that I discovered the link between future preparedness, leadership and diversity. His research on the Future of Work reveals five critical choices that make people Future Strong.
Let me connect these choices back to how it links to how leaders might think of Diversity Futurism…
Diversity is a laundry list of demographics that we consider in what makes us unique: race, family, location, faith, ability, gender, shared passion, etc. While making many choices in life, we must consider these demographics to ensure we are making the best possible decision. Large or small, we are faced with choices on a daily basis that will carry an effect on our future. Our decisions, even in the workplace, are generally made based on our own personalized diverse set of considerations.
For example: in order to live tomorrow, I must eat today. So yes, I must choose to eat. But now let’s add another layer: what do I choose to eat, and why do I choose it?
There are multiple factors that come into play in why I may choose one type of food over another:
- What food tastes the best to me?
- Which food will help me live longer?
- Which food is within my price range?
- Which food will also benefit my family?
- Which food might take too much time, and stop me from getting to work on time?
Give or a take a few, these are sample of typical considerations and represent a multitude of other choices each of us make every day at work . Toss in smart-technology and the internet, and we have created a hyper-connected society that is pushing people to their maximum capacity
I’ll ask you to put on your managerial hat for a second.
Imagine you have a workforce of 30 people, and you can almost guarantee that each of those 30 people have a large list of decisions they have to make a daily basis, with a diverse set of personalize considerations, all while being hyper-connected to their decisions, considerations, and endless information.
As a manager who has embraced diversity and inclusion, you know you must understand each of those 30 people’s individual value, choices, and considerations in order to ensure organizational effectiveness. Easy, right? Let me help you get started.
Here are some suggestions:
- Consider approaching inclusivity with a futurist lens. Identify the desired future for each of your individual team members. If they do not have this clear vision for themselves, encourage them to really think about it, and start to build a personalized plan. People feel included when they know that their own personal goals are being considered when decisions are being made.
- Identify how their current working situation will help them attain their desired future. When our daily work is aligned with our personal goals, the quality and care for the end result increases.
- Identify any changes that can be made to their work day that align organizational needs with an individual’s desired future.
Now this is just a place to start. At Global Learning, we have recently introduced the Future Strong Assessment Tool – an assessment tool created to help you identify future readiness on both an individual, as well as organizational level.
We are also in the process of developing further, www.FutureProofing.Today – a catalogue of strategies and solutions that can be used to bring your team and organization from Future Shackled to Future Strong.
Contact us today to learn more.