Diversity and inclusion: how freeing is your feed?
In a world where connectivity is championed, and opinions (like this) can be shared in a matter of clicks, we should be athletes in expression and communication, right? We should be waving our rainbow flags at any given opportunity and speaking in team huddles on the importance of inclusion?
We’re the ‘connected generation’, yet data shows that meaningful conversation and cultural connectivity is at an all-time low. We are now lonelier than ever before; everyone has felt the impact of the global pandemic and it can sometimes feel like diversity and inclusion (D&I) is now even harder to facilitate.
When considering D&I in a business setting, it’s easy to think your first step should be about self-promotion externally, but in reality we should be internally reviewing and checking ourselves and our business culture. What are we doing well? What are we doing wrong? How do I educate and inspire? Who do I need to talk to?
Simple stuff, right?
TAKING THE FIRST STEP
Go on a course? Google an article? Or perhaps pay for someone to speak to your colleagues about the topic? Easy, right – you’ve done your bit. Taking the first step into being truly serious about D&I is super simple and easy, and it starts with you.
Here’s a quick exercise: open your Instagram and review your own followers and feed. What do you see? A bright, rich diverse colourful content feed full of differing opinions and expression, or a bland, self-deprecating, repetitive feed that’s completely uninspiring?
The content you absorb every day influences the decisions you make and your social activities – the wallpaper colour you choose, that new outfit you’ve seen on Molly-Mae, or the way you decide to approach day-to-day scenarios. You manifest and outwardly project the culture from your social feed on a daily basis without even realising – from the way you talk to your children to the way you make fundamental decisions at work. As a species, humans are lazy; if we allow ourselves, we slowly become what the social algorithm wants us to be. We actively choose to follow, to idolise ‘that’ list of similar influencers our friends talk about, and our social feeds take full advantage of this.
Have you ever looked up from your phone and realised you’ve just wasted an hour of your life, without any real cultural take-out? Me too. We’re all guilty of it, and we should take full responsibility for our feed and how this is externally promoted – Instagram arrives to us as a blank canvas, and we populate it with the diverse content that we choose.
BREAK THE ALGORITHM
If I were to provide one piece of advice to anyone looking to be more conscious of D&I, the easiest step to becoming more aware of it is to audit your socials and take back control of your feed.
Widen your interests and feed to different types of content. Follow a Gen-Z YouTuber who uses phrases like ‘wig snatched’ and ‘tweakin’, and absorb a different POV on your commute. By breaking your algorithm you’ll find yourself being served rich, diverse content that helps widen your perspective. This in turn will shape the decisions you make moving forward, without even having to pay a penny. It’ll provide you daily with diverse struggles from different communities and the opinions of other cultures/ethnicities, and open your world to a completely different point of view.
To take the first step into better understanding D&I is to realise that perhaps you and your current social feeds could be the problem.
You can thank me later for reinvigorating your old social consumption while you still continue to ignore your other half…
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