Excerpt…In order for an organization to be successful in creating a diverse and inclusive environment, some of the onus is on the managers to understand what diversity is and is not. Even further, organizations must ensure managers understand their roles in serving as gatekeepers of the process. A critical part of diversity is creating access and opportunities for minorities to compete on a level playing field. But they have to be given the chance. The push is not towards hiring droves of minorities, establishing quotas, or inviting minorities to participate simply because of their minority status.

If we don’t raise the level of consciousness of those in positions to directly shape lives and change communities, we don’t generate the impact we are seeking. Resultantly, diversity and inclusiveness becomes nothing more than a slogan and minorities are once again denied equality of opportunity.

We used to call it the good ol’ boys club. We knew who was invited and who was not. It was just the way things were done.

The challenge today is that the same practices that excluded minorities are still prevalent, but we don’t have a name for it. As diversity and inclusiveness have become ubiquitous buzzwords, I wonder: Is it really possible to create a playing field that gives everyone a fair chance?

Read the column at UCF Forum