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Does your organization have any of these 7 symptoms of a mono-cultural mindset?
If women have survived by pretending to be someone else in order to be heard and recognized, organizations are missing out on a lot of talent, which means missing opportunity for innovation, productivity and profit that is already present in the talent pool and just waiting to be tapped. Organizations that cultivate cultural intelligence enable people to navigate conversations across differences of identity and culture including those of gender. This increases employee safety and belonging as the means to an end for more productivity, innovation and profit in every business. Ironically, what gets in the way of that diversity-fueling success is a well-intentioned desire to be fair. We want equality and fairness, and we often think this is best achieved by treating everyone essentially the same at work. We do this because people in the developmental stage of Minimization – who actually represent the majority of the US population – tend to assume we all have the same experience. We don’t realize that two-thirds of people who take the Intercultural Development Inventory® world-wide are unknowingly stuck in this middle stage of cultural development.(8).
And because we don’t want to go against cultural norms and upset a status quo that favors male voices, leaders inadvertently silence and sideline dissenting opinions and different perspectives, including women’s. As a result, we’re often blind to the cultural systems in our organizations that keep women feeling left out or pushed out. This is opposite of cultural intelligence.
Cultural intelligence is the ability to shift perspective and adapt behavior to successfully navigate conversations across cultural differences, such as gender, so that each of us feels valued and heard. In a previous blog (What’s a Guy to Do? written in light of the #metoo movement), we explained how men can use their cultural intelligence to help women not only share their opinions and perspectives but also get ahead in an organization. So, what can women do?
Dr. Amy Narishkin
Qualified Administrator for the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI)
About Dr. Amy Narishkin
“Leaders need to create a culture of safety and belonging for everyone to live their best and most productive life,” says Dr. Amy S. Narishkin. With a PhD in Adult Education and 25+ years of teaching, researching and mentoring, Amy works with CEO’s, management teams and those who take the lead in organizations to effectively implement the tools for cultural intelligence.
Her consulting and workshops help leaders and organizations develop the capacity to value, include and engage the unique strengths present in your workforce to deliver on the high performance promises of diversity.
In addition to her work in corporations, non-profits, schools and churches Amy is also an advocate for cultural intelligence at home with her international CEO husband, four thriving high school to adult children and her passion for church and community volunteering.
To jump start your cultural intelligence check out Amy’s book Awoke in Progress: An Interactive Journal for Developing Intercultural Consciousness.