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Coping with Diversity Fatigue

April 5, 2013

The following is an excerpt from a story that recently ran in the Canadian Huffington Post  by Linkage Institute for Leading Diversity & Inclusion faculty member Trevor Wilson.—Ed.

“A few years ago, I was meeting with two dozen seasoned diversity and inclusion practitioners from leading organizations to identify some of the toughest challenges they are facing within their respective organizations. Among the usual responses of leadership buy-in, effective outreach strategies and empowering employee network groups, came a new theme. It was a theme that seemed to dominate the entire discussion. None of us could put our finger on it until someone finally named it. As they so poignantly described it ‘Our organization is facing diversity fatigue.'”

“What, you may ask is diversity fatigue? It is the Herculean effort required by diversity practitioners to keep the momentum going through the toughest economic crisis since the depression. It is trying to sell and re-package a business case for diversity by showing specific return of investments at a time of limited dollars for any corporate imperative.

“It is figuring out how to creatively communicate diversity in an extremely time scarce environment when people struggle to do more with less. It is maintaining the gains with front line managers (the so-called frozen middle) who ask ‘When will this diversity thing end?’”

Click here to read the full story.

Have you encountered “diversity fatigue” and what are you doing to overcome it?

More about Trevor

Trevor Wilson is a speaker and strategist on issues of equity in the workplace. He’s also the author of Diversity at Work: The Business Case for Equity and a faculty member at Linkage’s Institute for Leading Diversity & Inclusion.

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