Traditional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts have focused heavily on recruitment and retention, totally missing the bigger picture issues that have kept either from having deep impact or being sustainable. The emphasis has been on “diversity hires'': Where are they? How do we get our position descriptions to them? How do we convey a compelling story about our organization that will draw them to want to work for us?
We create targeted lists of places we think all the “diverse candidates” will be: HBCUs, community and activism focused groups, specified professional organizations. We send our one recruiter who seems to be either a member of the target community or comfortable in intercultural interactions as the spokesperson. And we aren’t successful.
It’s been a bit of a dog chasing its tail story for decades. In 2022, traditional focus on recruitment and retention won’t help us build a diverse and competitive organization.