In September, our principal, Anne Gloger, had the opportunity to chat with a team at Deloitte in Toronto about diversity and inclusion at their Open Dialogue Speaker series. While many may think that that the management consulting and grassroots worlds are very different, there are more commonalities than meets the eye. Anne shared her three-pronged approach to leading and activating diverse teams:
Understand the common purpose
When tackling a problem with diverse stakeholders, start with Why instead of What, and ensure that the collective Whys are complementary.
Create a space where there is freedom to experiment
Ensure that the people are given the agency to change. This is biggest difference between human-centered design and the Connected Community Approach. In the former, information comes from the people to feed solutions, whereas in the latter, the people are the actual agents of change.
Return knowledge to the system
Understand that the system you’re venturing into is an ecosystem unto itself and know that understanding all realities can bridge almost anything. The ecosystem is a living system that has to be willing to change to fit its participants, otherwise it is not truly inclusive.
It was truly an inspiring conversation as much of this already resonated with those in the room, because at the end of the day, we are all working with people. “It’s about how we can collectively ensure that we are actively seeking to be brought into their reality and not focused on bringing them into ours.” – Celia Beketa, Deloitte. Only then can we truly build an inclusive environment.