In a POC sharing session I ran at the end of the last year, one of the participants said ‘why don’t we hear anything good about us?’
The media does a terrible job of polarising and reinforcing unhelpful stereotypes and of giving a vocal discriminatory minority a voice that makes it easy to mistake it for the majority. But we also have to own our part in the story telling that keeps a negative tone to all things race related.
We choose to tell the story of fear and difficulty in talking about racism, rather than the one which could be about the liberation and freedom that comes from being able to speak openly and honestly about any challenge in our business. We choose to tell the story of ‘there’s no racism here’, rather than accepting the truth that British society is steeped in it and we are committed to unlearning and relearning together with our whole business. We choose to tell the story of ‘diversity hires’ and of quotas, rather than the championing the dynamic, rich and positive representation of Britain that exists in our business. These narratives are a choice.
In 2021 we can all invest in being a more active participant in creating a counter narrative. New stories are essential to inspiring new action and creating new possibilities.