I’ll be totally honest. I’ve been hesitant to make a big statement about what I’m doing in my biz to be anti-racist. Why?
(Hint. It’s not because I’m not committed to it.)
On the one hand, I didn’t want it to look like I was just jumping on the anti-racism bandwagon as of a month ago… like I hadn’t ever thought of this or done anything about it before.
And on the other hand, it’s hardly like I’ve got this all figured out.
As you may or may not know… this work takes TIME.
- It takes time to deconstruct our minds and our organizations.
- It takes time to learn new ways to operate.
- It takes time to make plans and implement them.
- It takes time for actual change to happen.
- And then it all just keeps going.
But as I sat with it, I decided I’d like to share very honestly about what I have done, what I’m currently doing, and what I’m committed to doing in my business (and life) in the future.
I’ll share where I’ve made some progress, and where there is still much more to be done.
But here’s an important message for you before I do this…
While I can share with you what I’ve done and hopefully set a good example, I am not a diversity trainer. If you want to make your business a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive place to be, you’ll have to do the deep work yourself WITH a trained professional.
This work is NOT just about slapping a diversity statement on your website and creating a scholarship program. In fact, it’s dangerous to do those things if you haven’t done the work of dismantling your privilege (I’m speaking to the white folks right now).
I mean, imagine getting a whole bunch of different kinds of people enrolled in your program and then having NO IDEA how to deal with a racially charged issue that comes up.
It does real damage. People get hurt. And it will suck for you too.
So in your desire to do the right thing, please don’t be hasty and try to do things you’re not equipped to do.
But also, do not hesitate to do the work so that you ultimately can do those things. Get the education. Take action. Make mistakes. And be patient. (This is lifelong work).
So yeah. I didn’t just pull the stuff I’m about to share out of thin air. It’s a result of study, training, and experimentation (and screwing up). My main teachers in this work have been Trudi Lebron and Weeze Doran, but there are many others I continue to learn from as well (if you haven’t heard me talk about it yet, check out their podcast, That’s Not How That Works).
So here’s what I’m up to related to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) in my business, along with where I’m at on each piece:
- Scholarships in place for Black, Indigenous, and Women of Color (BIWOC) in my group programs (Check! However, I would like to expand my reach to find more applicants of diverse backgrounds).
- Community standards and a commitment to uphold them in order to create a truly safe space for BIWOC in my groups (Check! And this is a living, evolutionary process).
- My continued work to unpack my own privilege and dismantle white supremacy through books and trainings, in particular so that I can hold a safe space for BIWOC in my groups (Ongoing. Always).
- Conversations about race and equity in my programs are welcomed and engaged (Check! And more is possible).
- Curated DEI resources provided to all my clients and referrals to DEI trainers and coaches (Check! And always adding more).
- 30% of budget to Black-owned businesses and contractors (New commitment. Not remotely there).
- At least 1% of all profits to organizations supporting BIPOC (Check! With a commitment to grow this % as my profits grow).
- At least half the coaches and guest teachers in my programs are BIWOC (Happening, but more needed).
I’m forming this into a statement that will appear on my website in the coming weeks.
If you have any thoughts, concerns or questions, I’m very open to hearing them.