Over the last few years, I’ve noticed a growing trend of individuals, teams, and even organizations choosing a word or a mantra to focus on for the year. And while I admittedly haven’t chosen one for myself personally, I have figured out the word for organizations committing to continue D.E.I. in 2022.
While an intentional D.E.I. focus is not a new concept to have within an organization (and is arguably the foundation upon which organizations should be building their overall culture), there has been a noticeable uptick in the number of companies who have made a public commitment to doing the work since 2020. This is great.
What’s not so great? The number of companies who have visibly moved from a commitment statement to actually implementing changes that are necessary across their businesses. So, this year, I’m challenging all teams to focus on the 2022 D.E.I. theme, Move.
How can organizations actually Move this year in their D.E.I. journey? 5 places to start:
- Get on the same page. There are many teams who may be running into roadblocks where it feels like they aren’t able to move forward in the work because no one can agree on what the “work” actually is. Getting the team on the same page with how the work is defined and, therefore, the 3–5 priorities to focus on across the business will help you decrease the amount of time spent on trying to figure out what you’re moving on.
- Don’t make education one of your main priorities. This will likely be one where I’ll hear the most debate about, but let’s be honest: If any of you looked at the goals you’ve put into place since 2020, 4 out of 5 of them have primarily focused on education methods, including engaging in training, starting books clubs, collectively reading articles–the list could definitely go on. And while education is important, continuing to have it as a top priority means you will continue to spend your time on learning and not moving into action. This year, try assuming that education will be a sub-action of all of your priorities, but not one of your main priorities, and see how easy (or hard) it is to identify priorities focused on moving into action.
- Replace a focus on recruitment with one on retention. If 4 of your 5 priorities were education, then your 5th one…