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The Takeaway: A Discussion Guide on DE&I Progress

If you were asked to lead a conversation about driving progress around diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging in your organization, what would be the most impactful themes to explore to generate actionable insights? Here are the critical questions at the core of key articles in the Spring 2023 issue of People + Strategy journal:

Promises Kept: Anti-Racist Leadership  

by James White, former CEO of Jamba Juice, and entrepreneur Krista White

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  1. Does the CEO of your company fully own the responsibility for setting a clear tone of "anti-racist leadership?" Or is it delegated to others?
  2. Do diversity reports across your workforce lump together "women and minorities" as one group, an approach that, as the authors say, "tends to erase women of color?" 
  3. Is your organization taking a "less is more" approach to show meaningful progress on a few key priorities?
  4. What initiatives have you created for people to share their stories and have conversations about race to encourage empathy and compassion?
  5. Do you track participation of lower-level managers and employees in career development programs?

Black Representation in the C-suite and Boards 

Screen Shot 2023-01-03 at 104336 AM.png
    by Ron Williams, former CEO of Aetna 

    1. Does your company have a program to ensure that up-and-coming leaders from underrepresented
        groups are rotated through different assignments to expose them to new experiences, so that they can build track records of performance?
      1. In your organization, do Black executives and leaders from other minority groups work primarily in staff functions? Are they being given similar opportunities as others to run a business unit or division?
      2. Is the level of commitment in your organization to DE&I waning as new crises and disruptions have emerged? Do your actions still match the pledges made in 2020?
      3. When recruiting and promoting leaders, to what degree is the person's track record of building diverse teams a factor in whether they are given a senior role?

      Leadership Training & Onboarding

      by Amber Guild, CEO of McCann New York advertising agency Screen Shot 2023-01-03 at 104336 AM.png

        1. Does the responsibility of advancing DE&I in your organization fall mostly on the shoulders of junior employees from underrepresented groups, or is it owned more broadly by the entire leadership team? 
        2. What does Amber’s phrase—“leading through the lens of inclusion”—mean within your organization? 
        3. Does your company have a foundational development program for the pillars of good management, including goal-setting and providing candid and constructive feedback?
        4. Do your employee engagement surveys include getting a clear picture of whether every employee is getting the feedback they need to improve?
        5. Does your onboarding program include advice on how new employees can succeed within the culture?


        ​An organization run by AI is not a futuristic concept. Such technology is already a part of many workplaces and will continue to shape the labor market and HR. Here's how employers and employees can successfully manage generative AI and other AI-powered systems.