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A Thousand Words: Unspoken Diversity and Inclusion Fails

Read this insightful blog post from 2018 JIE joint-presenter Glen Guyton

I recently had the pleasure of staying at a lovely hotel property near Universal Studios in California. Let me say, the hotel chain was terrific. I was well treated, and, overall, the customer service was top notch. There was both racial and gender diversity among the frontline staff, and it is clear that the brand is working hard to train its staff and work at issues of diversity and inclusion. But something about the hotel décor stood out to me.

Because the hotel is in Hollywood, California, the lobby area is decorated with pictures of movie and entertainment stars. There were four groupings of images. Three of the sections included no people of color in the posted images, save one actress of Asian descent, Nancy Kwan. Nancy was the only person of color I noticed among the thirty-one photos prominently hung on the display wall at the lobby entrance. Tucked away in a quiet corner of the lobby there was another wall of stars. This wall of sixteen images featured, Sammy Davis Jr., Diana Ross, James Earl Jones and Gladys Knight. Out of the four display walls, one wall held four out of the five people of color I was able to identify. Noble effort right? I guess if segregation is the primary desire of your diversity and inclusion efforts.

I wondered if the era was the primary factor used to segregate the walls. Even that is no excuse. It may have taken some effort, but there are images of famous people of color available from past eras. Successfully achieving your diversity and inclusion goals will take a bit of an effort. What is the takeaway that you can glean from the images I encountered in Universal City?

Please select this link to read the complete blog post from Glen Guyton, who presented at the OSAE, MPI Ohio Chapter, PCMA Power Chapter 2018 Joint Industry Event held on Sept. 24, 2018 at the Hilton Columbus at Easton.

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