Guest Post: The Weakening Definition of Diversity

Guest Post: The Weakening Definition of Diversity

What qualifies as a “diverse” workplace? Does it mean that employees are of a variety of different races and genders? Or does it mean they’ve had a variety of life experiences?

This article, written by Gillian B. White – a senior associate editor at The Atlantic – gives an interesting take on the how the evolving view of what diversity means in the workplace is impacting American business. This evolving view comes from the perspective of Millennial’s, and it questions whether this view of diversity meaning more than just demographics benefits those who have been disenfranchised in the business world – such as women and minorities.

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This is a departure from what older generations understand diversity to mean. “Millennials frame diversity as a means to a business outcome, which is in stark contrast to older generations that view diversity through the lens of morality (the right thing to do), compliance, and equality,” the study of more than 3,700 individuals spanning different generations, races, and genders found. According to Christie Smith, one of the study’s authors, this generation is already comfortable with the idea of diversity in a traditional sense and they’re looking to expand the definition, which could be a good thing.

Read the entire article here.

 

A Tribute to Women in Business

A Tribute to Women in Business

I’m just at the cusp of a turning point
Where the sway in my hips is a symbol of strength
And not an act of trying too hard
Physically, a woman is strongest at that point in her body
It is the center of her being, but
We’ve still got our minds and our mouths
And don’t forget our hearts
It is the combination of these aspects of ourselves
That make us feel the most centered
This is the essence of who we are, our beauty
And though the world may put all sorts of labels on us
We are the ones who define our selves
So despite the world’s attempt to limit our abilitiesYSWBX4I5PP
Or more importantly, the belief that we are able
I embrace the labels:

Sexy. Promiscuous. Fat. Quiet. Ambitious. Brave.
Smart. Pretty. Skinny. Black. Loud. Emotional. Tall.
White. Scared. Weak. Healthy. Victim. Unique.
Fabulous. Confusing. Dramatic. Understanding.

Accepting ourselves and living our lives despite our flaws
Is the closest we will get to perfection.

Dear reader,

I hope you enjoyed the writing. I wanted to do an alternative post this week. A tribute to women. Our theme this month is Expression, and my favorite form of this is through poetry. It serves as a reminder that while I’m a business woman who works with other wonderful business women on a daily basis, we are all very multifaceted. To put it plainly, there’s levels to being phenomenal. Being in business means connecting with people from different backgrounds and different perspectives.

Yet, I don’t think we operate at our full potential until we master our own self. That means owning up to and improving our shortcomings, and perfecting our strengths. As a woman, it means triumphing over the stereotypes and realizing that women are the most untapped resource in the world.

Earlier this year it was revealed that the United States is the top country for women entreprenuers. You can read more on the article here. While that is wonderful news, the article admits that there is still much room for development in that there needs to be equitable access to resources for women to pursue entrepreneurial ventures, starting with education.

So I challenge women to take on the challenge of uplifting, accepting, and motivating each to charter the path of change.

Source: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/247767

Saying NO to Starting a Business.

Saying NO to Starting a Business.

So here’s the story: A few weeks back, Craig calls me. I was busy at the time but eventually got to return his call.

He lost his job and as a solution to ease his stress he wanted to know if he should start a business. If you’ve ever started a business or knows someone who has, you’ll find this comical to say the least. Collect yourself.

Any who, he calls, but I ignore it.

I’m usually busy throughout the day and if I talk to someone at certain times I can easily do that thing where you mentally rush a person off of the phone. Even though it is mostly in my head, it’s rude so I just don’t answer the phone.

It is why taking time off is important. It can be damn hard to “take off” when you do what you love, but it is important.

I mean really important. You can’t just take off a day here and there either. I mean really take the time to not do anything.

So here’s the thing: It has taken me years to get the benefit of it. When you feel called to something, you are driven by it. Some of this is ego, mind you. I don’t necessarily believe it is always a good or bad thing, but it can prevent you from thinking straight.

What I mean by “straight” is when it comes to your work, pick a lane. PICK A LANE. When you drive in too many lanes you may end up doing one or more of the following three things:

  1. Piss off your colleagues, team and powers that be (i.e. clients)
  2. Stop yourself from being good at one or two things, if you’re trying to be good at 5 or 6 things. We gettttt it! You’re impactful. You’re very accomplished. You’re smart and witty. You’re still just the one person who, despite how hard you’ve tried, is really only really good at the one or two things.  
  3. You’re avoiding a hard truth that I learned the hard way: Having your hand in 101 things (on the board of this, volunteer for that, attending 10 networking events in a 7 day span) will not necessarily mean you’ll be able to accomplish it all, see it all, fulfill it all or be it all to everyone. In short, trust that your lane is enough to make the impact it’s meant to make. Doing more than that means you’re really not accomplishing anything.

And when you have your car in different lanes, you take yourself too seriously. You fancy yourself more important than you actually are.

Anywho, Craig called and wanted to know if he should start a business.

I laughed. The answer is hell no. Hell. No. Hells No. Hellllllll NO!

Hell no. I didn’t say it this way, of course. What do you take me for? I’m no ass hole.

We all have that one friend or cousin who right after college said, “I should be a teacher!” It was determined right after school when said person did not get into the program they wanted or could not land the job they wanted to land.

I did it and was awful at it, but thought it was a good idea, because “Hey! Ebonni loves the kids.” I also am pretty good at English and how hard is it to teach someone? (I was 22. Give me a break, will you?!)

Anywho, the lesson here is… you guessed it… a good teacher is a great teacher because of the focus they devote to their craft. They learn it. They practice it. They work to improve it. For some, they are called and it is kind of disrespectful to blurt out “Let me try this on forsayingnotobusiness size!” on a whim. If you’re going to pick up a new trade or vocation, respect the industry enough to do something. Ask yourself, “If I knew I would question myself, my skill, my bank account – would I still want to do/be a {insert dream/business/idea}?”

If your answer is no or you’re wavering, you’ll want to ask yourself some more clarifying questions. We’ll get to them later.

Craig’s answer was no and my answer was good. Stay in your lane. It saves people, clients, family, friends and most importantly….you, time, money and sanity.

Guest Blog: The New Face of Corporate Activism

Guest Blog: The New Face of Corporate Activism

While we like the sound of our own voice here at The Idea Inc, every week we want to showcase the voices of other bloggers or articles we think do a good job of conveying an important message to business. We are a company that loves to work with businesses that have a purpose and much of the time that means some sort of social activism may come into play. This article looks at the face of corporate activism, and shares some interesting points on how that face is changing and how corporations can use it to their advantage. It is a very interesting read, and definitely worth your time.

The New Face of Corporate Activism (link to full article below):

Illustration by Mike Reddy

Illustration by Mike Reddy

From the Arab Spring to the protests in Baltimore, social movements have become a pervasive feature of contemporary society. Moreover, activists are increasingly targeting companies and even nonprofits. Although this environment creates new challenges for business, it also presents an opportunity for social intrapreneurs to change their companies for the better, from the inside out. – See more at: http://ssir.org/articles/entry/the_new_face_of_corporate_activism#sthash.VXQtl5aU.dpuf