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Futurist Oshoke Abalu Shares 4 Things You Can Do Right Now to Make the Future of Work (and Life) More Inclusive

March 2, 2021 Oshoke Abalu

Earlier this month, Linkage announced the launch of Redesigning Inclusion: Superpowers & Symphony. Presented in partnership with architect and futurist Oshoke Abalu, this new Signature Solution is an invitation to belong, where we recognize and cultivate each individual’s uniqueness as “Superpowers,” thereby unlocking Symphony, our greatest resource to achieve true inclusion in the workplace. In this article, originally published by Fast Company, Oshoke explains what makes Superpowers & Symphony so transformativeand invites you to a new future of diversity and inclusion in the workplace.  

Just as our broader society is beginning to awaken to the significant systemic changes needed to advance inclusion and equity, our businesses are also realizing that to contribute to a more equitable paradigm, our existing organizational cultures and systems will require a dramatic recalibration, beginning with our shared vision and perception of inclusion. 

In our evolving realitywhere our world is faced with crises of health, economics, environment and social justiceour organizations are called to act on a new paradigm of metrics that serve our human growth. These metrics move far beyond traditional objectives and key results of financial goals and productivity targets. 

“Superpowers and Symphony” is an invitation to create a new story of human connection and organizational unity that embodies our collective intention for the future of inclusion. It is the reperception of our people (our employees) as equal and unique expressions (Superpowers) of humanity in cooperation for the connectivity of our whole (Symphony). 

This timely recalibration requires a mindful refocus away from organizations’ obligatory meeting of diversity targets and toward the conscious design of a new system that includes everyone. It will inspire innovation, model resilience, and engage the collective intelligence of your organization to amplify the potential of your most valuable resource—your beloved employees—to deliver your organizational growth. 

Superpowers and Symphony serves as the resuscitation of your individual and organizational latent superpowers. Your unique composition, experience, complexity, perspective and idiosyncrasies will be your greatest resource to thrive in an uncertain future. 

Our journey to organizational Symphony starts with reperception and uses these four strategies to reach our future state:

1. RE-LANGUAGE: NAVIGATE YOUR FUTURE WITH A NEW STORY OF INCLUSION 

Our inclusion story is our invitation to belong and our most powerful force to make a difference to systemic inequity and inequality. Our inclusion story demands our attention over our afterthoughts, our empathy over our assumptions, and a dignified reperception of one another as equal and unique expressions of humanity with one-of-a-kind gifts to bring to the world, coming together in unity as a whole. 

To inclusively innovate, we have the privilege of replacing our failed story with an authentic new story of our own greatest collective intention. As investigative journalist George Monbiot puts it in his TED Talk:

“Without that new story, we are stuck with the old, failed story that keeps on failing. When we have no story that explains the present and describes the future, hope evaporates.” 

2. RE-CALIBRATE: AWAKEN TO INCLUSION AS A NECESSARY ACTION, NOT AFFIRMATIVE ACTION 

Recalibrating is not a process of becoming the hero of the challenge of inclusion, but about learning where you are, as an individual and as an organization, and to see yourself as a part of the existing system, so that you can be in service of the bigger questions, solutions and our collective growth. 

We are all a result of the society we are trying to change, and by discovering where you stand today on the subject of inclusion, you seek the truth of your current reality to unlearn stale patterns, confront limited narratives, and not add to the problems of inequity and inequality.

3. RE-FOCUS: CLAIM YOUR OWN SUPERPOWERS TO ACCESS A NEW PATH FORWARD 

Our privilege to shift our focus from what separates us to what connects us is the future of inclusion. As King T’Challa said in the film Black Panther, “Now more than ever, the illusions of our division threaten our very existence.” 

Refocusing on the cultivation of your employees’ uniqueness as superpowers and your greatest resource to meeting your unmet needs transforms your business. This relevant new paradigm manages all your people through curiosity, cooperation and culture, in a baseline of effectiveness and humanity that supports your organization’s unity and growth. 

4. RE-UNITE: CHAMPION A “WE” AGENDA 

The world is changing rapidly with strong evidence that we need to rethink human cooperation in the corporation. Our diversity and inclusion solutions have an unprecedented opportunity to champion a “we” agenda and serve the reunion of humanity. If we do not act with intention, we may compromise the future. 

To reunite is to champion an inclusive consciousness by evolving the age-old questions of “What job do you have?” and “What position do you fill?” to the self and organizational inquiry of “What is your superpower?” and “What problem do you solve with it?” as our new story and bequeathment of inclusion and symphony. 

As we reunite, we commit to take action as individuals and organizations in creating and sustaining a new restoration story that results in the amplification of our superpowers for our collective symphony. 

Now is the time for a new vision for inclusion in the workplace. Learn more about Linkage’s Redesigning Inclusion: Superpowers and Symphony, and learn how you can bring this transformative solution to your organization.

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