For me, diversity and inclusion was as much of a foregone conclusion as it is a catharsis.
When you grow up checking the ‘Other’ box because official documents are anything but contemporary, and you see and feel differences in the way people are, you get curious. At least, that’s what happened to me.
So, I took that lifetime of diversity experience into academia… I had to find some authoritative explanation of why people behave as they do about social issues, like race and gender equality. All those issues seemed most prevalent in government and politics, so that’s where I began my search. Political Science, law school, a Master’s… whew, all I wanted was answers to why diversity poses a problem.
Intellectualization, after all, IS a coping mechanism.
Because I couldn’t understand why people fail at inclusion, that is, why they can’t seem to recognize the things they share or how they treat themselves thru how they treat others, or just… how to work together towards the “bigger” values (because you don’t need any label to be honest or kind).
Hence, becoming a diversity and inclusion expert, helping companies make inclusion work. See: Encompassingness. Hence, the concept of Concurrent Good, my way to model how we can work together individually.
At the end of the day, I see a real need for new ways of thinking about our differences. It’s time to innovate inclusion because efforts up til now have created pain and division, and I – with all my Otherness – will try to make that happen.