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Memoirs from the OK Society of HR Management Conference held in Tulsa May 7-9 2014.
Published on by CS3 Technology in Blog Posts

 

Session “Diversity and Inclusion 2.0: A 21st Century Approach.” Dr. Steve Robbins.

 

Have you ever felt excluded? Last to be chosen for the team, picked on, bullied, negated, deemed unworthy? The pain of those feelings fires off the same areas of the brain as physical pain. Understanding takes effort and in our encounters with those that are different from us, you have to give yourself a chance.

 

Mental Models are those stereotypes we’ve grown up with; they’ve been ingrained in us over time by their playing over and over in our experience. A quick reaction is not always a good one.

 

People Patterns are repeating messages that developed over time and they create noise over which we can’t hear what someone is telling us. What do you think about people on welfare, people with tattoos, people who are disabled? The noise of their appearance or circumstance distracts us to the worth of who they really are.

 

If you’re an HR professional and two applicants vie for the same job…does the one that is so much like yourself or the one that fits a stereotype you’ve harbored get the job? Diversity exists everywhere – we are all very different people with lots of different stories. As HR professionals, we have to create an environment of inclusion. Yes, it initially requires more energy to overcome the ingrained thinking and closed-mindedness of years but it’s worth it. We gain more in prospective and workplace progress with a united team of diverse but caring individuals. If you’re an “insider”, pull in the “outsiders”. You have the opportunity to tear down or lift up. Be the example and set the tone that you will not tolerate exclusion. Everyone gets a chance to rise or fall based on their performance and nothing else.

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