04 Mar

Today is the last day of Black History month.

The month means different things to people of all colors - celebration, education, remembering the past, resilience to the future, human contributions, expectations of change and better days. And for others, heartache, unforgiveness, anger and hate.

Hopefully, during the last 28 days something you learned, read, saw or heard has expanded your thinking, perspective, understanding. If not, that may privide some evidence of the condition of your heart.

Every human (every color and hue) wants to be treated well, be educated, provide for themselves and their families, be accepted and included within society, their workplaces and the like.

I spend quite a bit of time having “teachable moments” explaining the many structural, economic and discriminatory obstacles that face Black and brown women developers. The first response is shock and disbelief because that is not their experience. See many of us assume if it’s not happening to me then it’s not happening. And this is where “empathy” steps in, humbling yourself to listen and learn from someone’s experience, and do something for the good, the better.

What that looks like for (Black, Brown people and women)

1. Diversifying leadership
2. Hiring, promoting more middle and senior leadership positions (Black, Brown, Women)
3. HR responding appropriately to discrimination and bullying complaints in the workplace
4. Paying market wages

You don’t need another press release, report, study, committee, initiative, or panel discussion- just search LinkedIn and you will find the Black and Brown people and women you need to diversify.

Black and Brown people are leaving the workplace because inspite of their education and experience, they are overlooked, underpaid, devalued and often spoke down to and treated poorly.

Hopefully, after reading this post, you will allow yourself to lead your business, organization or department with humility and as the occasions arise, walk in someone else’s Black and Brown shoes (empathy).

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