The extraordinary sadness, anger, and hunger for immediate change expressed by millions of Americans in the streets, online, and in living rooms has deeply challenged even the most progressive boardroom thinking about racial diversity and the actions needed to accelerate equality.
There is no magic button anyone can press to resolve hundreds of years of disparities, no matter how strong the will. That does not free us from the obligation to act immediately but instead reminds us we will have to act repeatedly.
Our strategic approach considers what we can accomplish today, in the months ahead and in the years to come. In the past several weeks, we acted alongside a number of our small business peers to rush employee and company contributions to more than 20 organizations with missions to advance racial equality. We did so quickly because we know the power of individual actions to bind together, demonstrate solidarity and influence public opinion. We wanted to help inspire our personal and professional networks, who may have been initially uncertain of how or when to step up.
To achieve more meaningful and directed impact, our next focus includes re-tooling our approach to recruiting from the ground up. We accept that this is not as simple as setting a headcount or proportionality goal. We must think deeply about how candidates will find us, how we will find them and whether our pre-requisites are justifiable given the disadvantages many have faced by the time they enter the job market.
Strategizing even further into the future breeds impatience when the urgency is so great. Nonetheless, we are committed to learning, listening and being a part of lasting change — however long it might take. We have the opportunity to be creative and to try some things maybe no one else has considered. We are fortunate to have our own independent firm with which we are free to innovate.
No one has yet found the end of the road to equality. If your business is on the same journey, we encourage you to act immediately — and repeatedly — to stay true to the mission. It’s the mileposts that lead to the destination.
RH Strategic is a Seattle and D.C.-based communications firm with a nationwide presence and additional global reach via membership in the Worldcom Public Relations Group. We provide strategic public relations for innovators in the technology, government and healthcare markets.