There are organizations and consulting and training firms out there attempting to dive into the arena of diversity, equity and inclusion to answer the call for diversity and inclusivity. However, most have not realized their true reason for getting into the game. Is it for money or is it truly to making a difference?

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Diversity, equity and inclusion work is not a playing field for the faint of heart; it takes a real commitment and intention to the work to be done, because most of it is about shifting mind-sets, ways of being and how people are treated. To see all people, (race, creed, color, etc.) as human-beings is to see and experience true diversity . So, if you’re that organization that is looking to dive in to do this very important work, where is your heart?  There are some questions that the leaders and people of organizations that want to do this work need to ask themselves to truly make an impact. It starts with the individual.

As a leader of an organization that wants to do this work, are you fostering an environment and culture in your own organization that embraces diverse people, backgrounds and experiences? Are you setting the expectation that the organization is diverse, equitable and inclusive? How do you know that you are being an inclusive leader and setting the example of inclusive leadership in your company? Are you setting the stage for all people to be successful in their careers or just the people that look like you? How are you showing up for people who do not look like you? What questions are you asking within your own organization to create the space for diversity, equity and inclusion?

As an organization, is the organization diverse?  Are there diverse populations of people (old, young, physically challenged, all races, LGBTQ+, etc.)? Where and how are people experiencing equality and inclusion? Is it a natural expression of who we are as an organization?  From the outside looking it, what does it look and feel like to the onlooker; to the client that you want to hire your organization? Are we giving all people a voice and creating a space where they can be seen, heard, acknowledged and appreciated? When or if there is an injustice, are we setting the expectation to truly call it out, investigate and remediate, or are we doing everything that we can to make it go away to save face?

More of the same is what is not needed in this important work. It requires a heart that sees and knows that things haven’t been right for a very long time and we are on a mission to make it right. However, it is not until we reveal our own blind spots in our own organizations that we can actually dive into this work and make a difference. If the heart of the leaders and people of your organization are genuinely about making a difference, the opportunities will reveal themselves and the money will come. Where the heart goes, energy flows!