The last few years seem to have been challenging for many people, myself included. Last year, I had the privilege to take a bit of a sabbatical. Even though I found it difficult to fully pull myself away from my work, I was removed enough that when Deborah Levine, Editor in Chief for this publication, asked the Advisory Council members to write on upcoming trends, I felt a little out of touch. I decided I needed to catch up a bit, and I started my research. Much to my dismay, I felt like the more things changed, the more they remained the same. I wasn’t seeing much different than what colleagues and I talked about over 20 years ago. People were still focused on hiring and attraction and leadership development. Some spoke of developing business cases and strategies around Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)—or whatever form it’s currently taking.
Frankly, I had hoped we had a lot of this figured out by now.
Continue reading DEI: What’s Old Is New Again – by Susan McCuistion
The Native American community in the United States makes up a mere 3% of the population, yet they have perhaps been one of the most misunderstood and stereotyped groups in the nation. While Blackface has been frowned upon for at least 40 years now, sports mascots and symbology intended to “honor” Native Americans are still considered acceptable by far too many people. Many attempts have been made to erase Native American culture, and their history has been whitewashed.
However, these negative trends have been reversing. As we head into a new year, let’s look at three areas where Native Americans and their stories are headed in a more positive direction.
Continue reading Key Native American Trends for 2022 – by Susan McCuistion
Our approach to Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) is broken. We have done the same thing over and over for years, expecting better representation and more equitable treatment, all to no avail. In fact, many people still don’t know exactly what D&I is.
At every turn, there’s news about people being mistreated, excluded, and harmed. The social and political unrest often seem impossible to escape. Situations arise on a regular basis that create a social media nightmare for organizations resulting in public shaming and forced apologies. The mental, emotional, and physical toll this turmoil takes impacts us all, regardless of our role— victim, perpetrator, or observer.
We can’t fix the mess we’re in with a 2-hour training session. Creating a world that is truly more equitable for everyone is a process. It takes time and practice.
Cultivating compassion can help us nurture more connected communities and workplaces. On the surface, compassion sounds like a soft skill. However, compassion isn’t just about being kind to other people and doing nice things for them. Instead, it’s an active process through which we build skills and knowledge to understand what kind of help is wanted, rather than assuming what is needed.
This article is distilled from my book, “The D Word: 12 Steps to Diversity Recovery,” which is focused on building the skills needed to bring a more humanitarian approach to D&I using compassion and resilience.
Continue reading 12 Steps to Diversity Recovery – by Susan McCuistion