Third Thursday Re-Cap: Thinking about Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Our Third Thursday conversation today focused on the connections and potential of Strategic Doing with the topics of diversity, inclusion and equity. Flint leader Kenyetta Dotson shared her experiences using Strategic Doing principles in that community, where SD has become not so much a methodology as a “way of being. Strategic Doing Fellow Michon Hicks explored how the idea of “creating space for deep and focused conversations” (Rule 1 of Strategic Doing) is more generally applicable to our time and how we might have those conversations. And SD newcomer Fay Horwitt of Forward Cities introduced us to the equity work she does and the connections she sees with Strategic Doing. We’ll have excerpts from the conversation available on our social media channels over coming days.

Meanwhile, as in all of Strategic Doing, we try to focus on doing, not just acting. With that in mind, if you’re wondering how you might contribute to using the principles and practice Strategic Doing to further equity, here are a few ideas:

  • If you’d like help thinking about what a community-based initiative might look like where you live, both Michon and Kenyetta are happy to talk with you (the links will open up your email to send them a message).
  • If you’ve been to training…one thing we are thinking about for the Strategic Doing community as a whole is fostering a more diverse group of Certified Workshop Leaders. Whether for you or a colleague, a certification class starts in just a few weeks.
  • The idea of “safe spaces for deep and focused conversations” is something you can put into practice right now. If you’ve been to a training, pull out your Field Guide.
  • If you haven’t been to training, the Strategic Doing book released last year has an entire chapter on this concept.
  • When we talk about “who needs to be at the table,” we often use the word “stakeholders,” which encourages a mentality of checking off boxes: as long as there is one person there from a particular group, the box is checked – not a useful way to ensure equity. In Strategic Doing, we encourage the use of the word “shareholders” – who is willing to invest with us in a different future? Investment means a whole range of assets, far beyond the traditional definition of money. Thinking about the conversation in this way can broaden your ideas of who should join in. If your own networks aren’t particularly diverse, ask others to help you identify a more diverse group of shareholders.

What other ideas do you have for working toward inclusion and equity?


Photo credit:  @liwordson from nappy.co


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Liz Nilsen