As companies celebrate Black History Month and the contributions African Americans have made to the overall history of this great country, there is a difference between remembering and honoring. This difference requires individuals to move from mere knowledge to action. Our CEO, Doug Harris, sees honoring as an action that transforms facts and past experiences into change and possibility. In this series, Doug asserts that to really honor the contributions of African Americans is to maximize all that history teaches as well as the action it requires.
In this third vignette, Doug addresses individual representation in the workplace. Most people have questions and concerns about being more effective in the workplace but many times those questions revolve around what others have been or should be doing. Here, Doug continues on the path of individual responsibility and accountability. He challenges us to ask ourselves “how can I influence my company to honor the future of Black history” versus “How can my company better honor the future of Black History”. Both questions are important yet the latter gives more weight to the challenges whereas the former focuses on our ability to overcome them.
While this series was borne out of a celebration of Black History, Doug believes the universal concepts are relevant to people of all races, backgrounds, and genders. Let’s maximize our history by going beyond the celebration to individual contributions with a focus on collaboration. Unity is more than a concept but a way of being.