1. Your own White privilege has contributed to your success. While it may be a difficult reality to face, understanding the ways in which your identity as a White person has influenced your own life outcomes and experiences is critical to your own development as well as your capacity to model effective leadership in promoting racial diversity, equity and inclusion in your business.
  2. Acknowledging and challenging the reality of White dominant culture is a central component of any racial diversity, equity and inclusion goal for your organization. While many organizational leaders are unaware of the impact of their behaviors and practices, and more specifically how they reflect and communicate dominance, power and privilege – whether implicitly or explicitly – such actions can impede the potential of staff of color and advantage White employees as well as contribute to unhealthy and uneven workplace dynamics which advantage White employees.
  3. Expect that there will likely be internal and external resistance to any organizational agenda to prioritize racial diversity, equity and inclusion. Committing to racial diversity, equity and inclusion goals means accepting the likelihood that there will be internal and external stakeholders who are not supportive of your decision to lead in this way.  Thus, it is important to commit to such goals despite any opposition to this urgent work.
  4. You must be willing to take a close look at your organizational policies and practices to determine where there can be better alignment with racial equity goals. Since the infrastructure of many organization’s rest upon and are informed by biased systems, processes and practices, promoting racial diversity, equity and inclusion with intention necessitates a review of all policies guiding and governing your business practices to determine where and/or how they may be disadvantaging staff of color and/or perpetuating inequitable outcomes in experiences and processes.
  5. Promoting racial equity is most effective when focusing on both internal and external business practices. Ensuring that your organization is modeling its commitment to racial diversity, equity and inclusion for the benefit of your workforce as well as the external communities/customers you serve and support reflects a credible approach to this urgent work.

For White organizational leaders, prioritizing racial diversity, equity and inclusion means developing an awareness for the ways in which your role and identity as such have the potential to influence any progress your organization plans to make.

How much and where are you willing to invest to realize racial diversity, equity and inclusion goals within your organization?