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It will take over 200 years to reach gender equality at our current pace. Nicole shared that, although things are continuously improving, we have to expedite the process and start making significant changes. Many of our organizations don’t make movements because we don’t know what to do.
We are frequently relying on, or hoping that people will simply make unbiased decisions. The challenge is that all of us have un-realized biases. To see significant change we have to examine our systems, measure them, and make changes to the systems. We can’t simply rely on good people. Nicole shared that as we dig into our internal systems, we discover that great people with good intentions, can’t always overcome the systems in place. Things like how we find and recruit for new positions, how we hire, internal policies, etc. It’s so important to take a critical look at our policies and practices and pair this with listening to our staff and teams to find out what is and is not working for them.
It sounds so basic but it doesn’t always happen. If we want to understand the experience of others, we have to ask and listen. One of the best things, as Jeff and David from Cincinnati zoo shared, is to connect with organizations that are not zoos. They discovered that all companies are facing similar challenges and no one knows the perfect solution. Everyone is in this together striving to create a better, more equitable experience for their staff, guests, volunteers, and partners. One of the best steps you can take is to connect with other local organizations and their HR teams to simply start talking and brainstorming.
Everyone’s context is different. The process or asking, listening, and testing ideas is essential. Queen City Certified’s process uses this systems-based, data-driven, listening and ideation process at it’s core. Here are just some of the ideas we discussed on the call:
Each month, ECHO Digital is hosted to create opportunities for passionate zoo professionals to connect with innovative ideas from outside the zoo field as well as with other zoo colleagues around the country. To join the next ECHO Digital, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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