Courtney Vinopal, Jun 5, 2020 11:33 AM EDT
The death of George Floyd and the protests that have followed sparked a national dialogue about race in America. For many, discussions about race and the reality of living in America as a black person happen daily. But many households, communities and workplaces are having these conversations for the first time. How can employers and colleagues better support employees of color? What is the most productive way to talk about race in the workplace?
Raël Nelson James, the director of diversity, equity and inclusion at The Bridgespan Group and the PBS NewsHour’s Stephanie Sy took viewer questions on navigating discussions of race at work.
The traumatic events of the past few weeks can be a “catalyst” to kick off discussions about race, diversity and inclusion in the workplace, James said, but cautioned that employees should be sensitive about how they approach it.
James stressed that “allyship is not a destination,” and employers will have to put in the work to learn and think deeply about how they can reform their workplace dynamics to better advocate for and uplift diverse talent within their workplaces, as well as commit to pursuing racial equity.
Here is some advice from James about how employees can start to think and act on this in the coming days and weeks.