Talking business and entrepreneurship without discussing people of color is avoiding the new majority. As I’ve shared before, growth in diverse companies is happening with or without your business (as Facebook and other tech giants are discovering) and those that serve the diverse markets will succeed in the future.
That said, a good, small step you can take at this very second to better understand what I’m talking about is to watch a few TED Talks. It sounds simple, but there are many brilliant talks you may have missed to inform your thinking on this important conversation.
Here, a few to check out:
Bryan Stevenson, We Need to Talk About an Injustice
I was in the crowd at my first TED when I watched the now-legendary civil rights lawyer Bryan Stevenson break down how the justice system had failed. Many of us were crying. All of us were breathless. “I represent children,” Stevenson said. “A lot of my clients are very young. The United States is the only country in the world where we sentence 13-year-old children to die in prison.”
On Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI)
Mellody Hobson, Color Blind or Color Brave?
Financial icon Mellody Hobson breaks down why diversity programs aren’t working. She shares why color blindness is dangerous, explaining it means we’re ignoring the problem. Instead of avoiding race, Hobson tells us that the really smart corporations actually deal with it head on.
Ron Finley, A Guerilla Gardener in South Central LA
How do you feed your community? Ron Finley’s short, smart talk shows how he brought organic farming to a part of L.A and was almost stopped by political forces. It reveals how even the best efforts can be muffled by an inequitable system.
Titus Kaphar, Can Art Amend History?
To paraphrase a Toni Morrison quote, the main purpose of racism is distraction. Artist and historian Titus Kaphar shows onstage– literally with a paint brush– how African diaspora has been twisted and erased. It’s jaw dropping to see in person, and just as stunning on video.
On the Future
Jacqueline Woodson, What Reading Slowly Taught Me
When it comes to equity, diversity and systems, we often worry about the past more than building the future we want. Popular childrens book author Jacqueline Woodson reminds us how we are now creating the world we’ll have in two decades.
On Your Power
Damon Brown, How to Build Power Wherever You Are
Based on my new book Build From Now, I explain how the systems that stifle us have helped develop the skills we need to change them. But first, we have to recognize our own strength.