Back a few weeks ago I had the opportunity to speak at the SHRM Talent Management Conference and Exposition on the subject of diversity. Now let me make something very clear – I am not considered diverse. I am a middle aged, balding, caucasian male who happens to see companies regularly screw up their diversity initiatives.
What makes me qualified to speak on the subject? This is probably the same question the audience had in their minds when I walked up to the front of the room. Based on the replies I received after the session, I also believe most understand the value of my perspective.
My point? Companies focus on diversity as a color and forget that real diversity stems from diversity in culture. We spend so much time trying to explain how similar we are from culture to culture – lets quit the charade and embrace the fact that we are different. I do not have the same experiences as you, nor should I expect you to have the same experiences as me!