Cliques-R-Us

separated_from_group_400_clr_9554I was an overweight, shy, only-child who moved every other year. I attended 11 schools from K through 12; tough to build friendships.  In college, I made a very deliberate decision to change who I was, I lost weight, found a sorority with like-minded sisters, and learned social skills I’d not learned before. I then was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the U. S. Marine Corps, and left that sad child behind. I don’t get intimidated often, but when I do, it is usually the “mean girls” from high school that flip my trigger.

What do I mean by “mean girls?” Well, hopefully the Rachel McAdams stereotype has grown up to be less overt, and more caring. Honestly, if she didn’t I think she will struggle in today’s workforce. (more…)

When “T” and “F” Collide

tfI am a fan of Myers Briggs Type Indicator, above all the other instruments available to spark insight into differences within a team.  One of the reasons I like the MBTI is because you can break down where the conflict might be occurring to more granular, more understandable differences.  Unlike DiSC or others where you “are a letter,” MBTI provides insight into four very specific areas where differences can occur, and when you are aware of the origin of the difference, you stand a better chance of resolving it.

I have come to the conclusion that the one area that is most difficult to identify, and possibly resolve is the “Thinking” vs “Feeling” dichotomy. (more…)

Roosevelt Thomas’ Legacy

In 1994, I took on the challenge of introducing the concept of diversity in business to my bank’s leadership.  Banks were coming under fire for their apparent discriminatory lending practices, and were struggling to figure out how to make the necessary changes in a way that honored the business strategy.

Enter Dr. R. Roosevelt Thomas, whose books still sit on my shelf, and I refer to them yet today.  Dr. Thomas passed away earlier this month at a very young age, and with the exception of a small article in “Diversity Executive” which made its way to LinkedIn, I couldn’t find any other information.  So I thought I would pay tribute here to an individual who influenced my path through the broader  discipline of human resources by heightening my personal sensitivity to the importance of diversity of thought. (more…)