You are currently browsing the Talking Cultural Diversity blog archives for April, 2011.

Someone Like Me

By Kimberly Lord - 04.06.2011

Most people I talk with would agree that it’s human nature to be drawn to someone like yourself.

Simply walk past the American Girl store on Michigan Avenue to see little girls stream out carrying dolls that mimic their hair, skin and eye color dressed in identical outfits.

When I worked at JPMorgan Chase, I recall hearing our CEO Jamie Dimon, acknowledge this idea with his trademark candor and then segue into the topic of attracting a diverse workforce and customer base.

Pat Harris, Global Chief Diversity officer at McDonald’s, documents her company’s diversity path in her book, None of Us is as Good as All of Us.

Harris writes of McDonald’s early expansion in the 1960s, “We needed to change the complexion of our company to survive in a society that was dramatically changing all around us.  If we were to continue to grow and expand, we needed to recognize the new realities of the world in which we operated and change our approach.”

So how do we change our approach when our default is programmed to gravitate toward someone like us?

I was reminded of the answer just yesterday in a follow-up training session with a group who had recently taken KMA’s web-based diversity series:

What you do is change the definition of “like.” Read more »

Here We Go Again

By Tatyana Fertelmeyster - 04.03.2011

Once in a while History gets bored of moving straight ahead and starts running around in circles.

All of it had happened already and here we go again.

Inquisitors believed in legitimacy of their courts and did not hesitate much to burn screaming fires all over Europe.

Hitler did not bother much with courts. He burned books and then decided that burning readers and writers can be much more effective.

Stalin packed gulag camps with people who wrote, or were possibly thinking about writing, a “wrong” book and who were literate enough to possibly read something and get an unauthorized thought in their head.

Old-girl History has seen plenty of those who illuminated their righteousness by feeding books and human lives to fires.

And here we go again. Read more »