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Five Steps to Close the Equity Gap Through Storytelling

Mike Rabin September 08, 2020
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Tackling the deeply rooted challenges of racial inequities in your organization is a call for both action and innovation. Our unique, yet proven approach around storytelling reaches the necessary depths to reveal these issues, and then seeds the initiatives that your organization can take to close its equity gaps.

Storytelling is a timeless form of human connection. Everyone has stories to share, and every story we seek to understand is an opportunity to gain empathy beyond our own life experiences. The depth and authenticity of stories far exceeds what can be revealed from traditional forms of market research, such as surveys and focus groups.

We reach insights by incorporating Watson AI technology, our own algorithms, and a proprietary methodology into the study of these stories. This data-based approach is crucial to translating our study into organizational changes. Altogether, we walk you and your leading stakeholders through these five steps to translate a storytelling approach into culture and brand impacts:

Step 1: Open your mind and heart to what might be going on in your organization.

Your leadership role is a position of privilege and power. No matter your background, your position in the hierarchical structure is blinding to inequities. We ask that you embrace the fact that you don’t know as much as you’d like to or should about these issues.

Our storytelling solution is called SEEQ (Stories to Engage, Explore, and Question). It kicks off with setting a shared intention and gaining buy-in for this effort. We’ll set clear objectives, parameters, and milestones for the study, we’ll help you recruit its participants, and we’ll set up the digital or virtual space to conduct the storytelling sessions.

Step 2: Experience empathy with the stories of your key stakeholders.

By being engaged in the storytelling experience, you will gain empathy that can heighten your intuition as a leader in the solutioning process.

On the back end, we’ll begin processing the stories through our machine learning methodology, which scores the stories within categories such as emotions, needs, and values expressed. It then identifies the correlations in the data that ground our insights for organizational impact.

Step 3: Allow space for personal and collective reflection.

You’ll have the opportunity to reflect on what these stories mean to you, and you may feel vulnerable doing so.

Our solution guides a roundtable of your leading stakeholders through collaborative workshops. Its environment of thoughtfulness and collective vulnerability fosters revelations around the policies, actions, and practices in your organization that need to be reconciled to close the equity gap.

Step 4: Take enlightened action.

A paradox of heightening your awareness is the obligation to take action. Embrace it. By this stage, you’re much better prepared to conduct yourself as an enlightened leader. As a leadership team aligned in this process, you can take actions that enlighten the entire organization.

Our solution guides you all the way through the creation of strategic recommendations and the implementation of an action plan. We also extend our on-going counsel and project management support to help ensure that your objectives are achieved.

Step 5: Expand your impact.

Whether it’s a livelier culture, the expanded reach of your brand, or access to new collaborative partnerships, the groundwork you’ve laid will empower your stakeholders to drive positive changes and new opportunities for your organization. Carry this momentum forward by continuously seeking out people who have had different lived experiences than you.

If you’re interested in exploring how Share More Stories can help you root out inequities in your organization, and take enlightened action towards a more cohesive culture and brand, let’s start the conversation at mike@sharemorestories.com.

Further Reading

Stories
It’s Time to Think Differently About Equity
I am Uncorked
Combat Hate with Love
A Week in My Skin
Shopping While Black

Articles
Tackling Racism As Accountable Business Leaders, by Anthea Kelsick, Co-CEO B Lab U.S. & Canada
Is This the Beginning of the End of American Racism?, by Ibram Kendi, The Atlantic
How to Promote Racial Equity in the Workplace, by Robert Livingston, Harvard Business Review

Cases
Virginia Tourism Corporation: An on-going and multifaceted project focused on connecting out-of-state African American tourists with Virginia historical sites.
Fortune 200 CPG Company: Empowering African American and Asian American employee resource groups to impact the larger organization.
Review a summary of our organizational diversity & inclusion cases here.

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