After three months of coronavirus fear, job uncertainty, and quarantine stress, the explosion of social unrest in the United States around the issue of structural racism has placed yet another emotional and psychological burden on countless people. For instance, recent research shows that African Americans, Asian Americans, and women are notably more tense, worried, and uncomfortable with returning to the work environment they knew before—and that includes the meetings environment.
This article in SmartBrief on Leadership provides five questions that both meeting managers and their bosses must ask of minority and female coworkers—and event attendees, too—to gain the best understanding of their prior experiences in the organization, their desired experiences, and what they feel stands in the way of the latter. Action that comes from their answers will make people more comfortable and trusting, and thus more open to communicating, networking, and bonding with colleagues and managers at meetings in particular.
The present moment is an inflection point for every organization—one that planners and their bosses cannot afford to squander through insufficient or misdirected action. For further assistance with developing effective initiatives on this issue, planners can check out the Social Justice Training Institute. SJTI offers education through its own conferences as well as presenters for corporate and association meetings on how to build workplace diversity, equality, and justice.