I admit the title of this post was a bit over the top (okay, way over the top).
I feel like when most people hear the word “diversity,” they think, Oh god, he’s not going to rant about white privilege, being nicer to disabled people, or rave about some new religious animal-worshiping cult… is he? SO uncomfortable.
Well, the answer is “hell, no,” I am not going to talk about any of that stuff. But I’ve been researching the b’jesus out of “diversity,” because of the new direction of The i'Mpossible Project (not to mention our new book with 50 “diverse” stories), and because I’ve been traveling a lot the past four years to 41 U.S. states, Canada, Mexico, Australia, and England. I’ve had conversations with thousands of different people, with diverse backgrounds, religions, accents, skin colors, genders, sexual orientations, and even colloquialisms (it’s not just po-TAY-toe vs. po-TAH-toe anymore, baby). It’s pretty incredible how many great people live in this world… and how crap-tastic we are at communicating with one another. Petty disagreements over parenting styles or freedom of some kind of choice turn into icy cold shoulders and even war when an “agree to disagree” would do just fine.
But the fact is: diversity makes us more innovative and better innovators. There is a world of information from people we’ve never met on new parenting techniques, how to get your spouse to try spicy food, how to make a thirty year marriage fire on all cylinders, or how to reintegrate rehabilitated ex-convicts into society and the workplace.
How do we make diversity a priority?
At home we can work as a family to learn a new language.
At work we can create coalitions to give a voice to whatever *minority exists in the workplace *think outside the box here. If I was the only straight guy working in sales for a gay cruise company, then I would be the minority.
In our community we can work to make sure everyone’s views are taken into consideration and everyone has a seat at the table for block parties, local politics, and suburban rezoning policies.
How do you do diversity? Leave a reply…. I’d love to learn about it!