Over the past few years, organizations around the world have invested in diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives with varying results. But to achieve lasting change, they'll need to commit to that work for much longer, says Ella Washington, organizational psychologist and professor at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business. Her research shows that companies move toward DEI maturity in five stages (aware, compliant, tactical, integrated, and sustainable) and each takes time to work through. She explains why some organizations get stuck, and how to overcome those challenges. Washington is author of "The Necessary Journey: Making Real Progress on Equity and Inclusion" and the HBR article "The Five Stages of DEI Maturity."
The Growing “Do Good” Economy
From corporate social responsibility to ESG to “doing well by doing good,” an increasing number of organizations are pursuing positive social impact, and it’s not just nonprofits and government agencies. But incorporating social impact into a for-profit business raises all kinds of system dilemmas, says Jacob Harold, a cofounder of the philanthropy data platform Candid and the former CEO of GuideStar. He explains a bundle of tools that can be used together to create meaningful change. Harold wrote the new book “The Toolbox: Strategies for Crafting Social Impact.”
Let’s Protect Our Frontline Workers from Rude Customers
From videos of drunk and disorderly airline passengers to stories of hospital visitors angrily refusing to wear masks, customer-facing work seems to have gotten a lot more difficult – even dangerous -- over the past few years. It's important that organizations understand the experience of frontline workers now, and help to better protect their employees, says Christine Porath, professor of management at Georgetown University. She's studied incivility for 20 years, and has spoken to workers in many industries in the last few years about what it's like working with customers today - with stress, anger, and incivility seemingly on the rise. And she has advice for managers and leaders. Porath is the author of the HBR Big Idea article "Frontline Work When Everyone Is Angry."
What We Still Misunderstand About Mentorship and Sponsorship
Companies offer sponsorship programs to help a more diverse group of high performers and future leaders advance. But the efforts can often misfire. Herminia Ibarra, professor at London Business School, says that’s because these arranged developmental relationships can lack authenticity and meaningful paths for action. She explains the key distinctions of mentorship and sponsorship and recommends that companies focus on two vital qualities: public advocacy and relational authenticity. Ibarra wrote the HBR article “How to Do Sponsorship Right.”
Grit Is Good. But Quitting Can Be, Too.
From politics to sports to business, we tend to glorify those who persevere, show grit, never give up. But former professional poker player and consultant Annie Duke argues that there is also great value in quitting — whether it’s a project, job, career, or company. She walks us through the biases that keep us stuck in the status quo even when other paths would be more fruitful and explains how to make better decisions. Duke is the author of "Quit: The Power of Knowing When to Walk Away.”