Carla Henison shares her perspective
What inclusion means to me
30 Aug 2021 - Estimated reading time: 2 minutes
Diversity and inclusion to me is about self-awareness and curiosity.
Self-awareness of our learned behaviours, automatic judgments and unconscious bias’. The power of pause and practicing the ability to catch and challenge our thoughts regularly really helps challenge automatic judgments and unconscious bias’. It does take practice but like anything, the more you do it, it then becomes a habit. It’s actually quite fun challenging your thoughts and being curious as to where they may have stemmed from!
Curiosity to show an interest to know more about someone different to you. Taking the time to ask questions as part of your conversation with someone, whether at work or socially. I do wonder, myself included, if we’re all in such a rush these days that conversations with people we don’t know that well are rushed, with us not fully present, as we’re thinking of the next thing we’ve to do. Another thing I try and do regularly is join webinars on topics I’d like to understand better. Our diversity dialogues are also great for this.
No one has a choice as to how they’re born into this world; the colour of our skin, gender, sexuality, neurotypical or neurodivergent, family circumstances etc are all mapped out for us from day 1. The age old saying of treating someone how you’d wish to be treated is so apt with inclusion. Feeling excluded no matter how subtle or blatant doesn’t feel nice. So self-awareness, curiosity and calling out inappropriate behaviours are key steps to being inclusive, something in which we have committed ourselves to throughout our 100th birthday year.