One of the WorkHuman sessions that stood out was David Lapin’s session, “The Missing Piece in the Diversity and Inclusion Puzzle.” Mr. Lapin is the Founder & CEO of Lapin Consulting International and author of Lead by Greatness, which I purchased and look forward to reading. He is a South African scholar, corporate advisor, and rabbi. He collaborated with Nelson Mandela’s government and influential business leaders during the turbulent post-Apartheid period in his native South Africa. Nelson Mandela expressed to Lapin how one should always treat others with dignity.
Inclusion is key. Rabbi Lapin points out that organizations with inclusive cultures are: 2X as likely to meet or exceed financial targets, 3X as likely to be high-performing, 6X more likely to be innovative and agile, and 8X more likely to achieve better business outcomes. Additionally, the value of diversity of thinking is essential. When there is a value of diversity in thinking, there is +20% innovation with a -30% risk for not having diversity.
The objective of inclusion and diversity are improved collaboration between people of different perspectives and backgrounds. However, Rabbi Lapin’s research indicates that I&D often triggers defensiveness in participants resulting in less collaboration, not more. One of the missing pieces, according to Lapin, is to treat people with the same levels of dignity and inclusiveness you are asking them to treat others with in life and the workplace.
Three key inclusion and diversity key ideas include values to launch a journey of growth and development, prepare individuals with self-awareness and honesty, and not to force change in people’s minds but facilitate their choice to expand their perspectives. Lapin indicates to “prepare people with self-awareness and for the honesty and depth of the conversations needed.”
A French-American author, Anais Nin stated, “We don’t see things as they are; we see them as we are.” It is important for people to expand their perspectives. This really stands out because it is 100% true. It is imperative for us, as humans, to expand different perspectives and learn about our diverse backgrounds.
This was my first time attending WorkHuman and it was fantastic. Everything was great, between the diverse breakout sessions, the various keynote speakers (George Clooney who I met backstage - see picture below, Geena Davis, Viola Davis, and many more), WorkHuman Central where attendees were able to appreciate the impact of gratitude and understand the importance of human connection. I highly recommend attending this conference in the near future. I’m looking forward to attending next year in Denver!