Being deeply moved and motivated by the pervasive racial unrest recently witnessed in communities throughout the United States and within our local community, Kaiser Consulting announces our firm’s Advocacy + Inclusion Initiative.
As we contemplate and confront issues that will move us towards a more just future, we strive to eliminate inequities tied to diversity within society and transform the status quo for underrepresented individuals into meaningful action and sustainable change.
We are steadfastly committed to implementing immediate, near-term, and long-term steps to achieve a strong diversity, advocacy and inclusion program within our firm and lasting change in the communities we serve. We believe taking consistent and actionable steps in the right direction will help us achieve our goals.
Our Path Forward
Our journey began in mid-2020 when we joined local Columbus (Ohio) business leaders to publicly raise awareness about racial injustice by acknowledging that persistent and systemic racism exists and committing to promote solutions to eradicate inequities.
Simultaneously, we formed an internal five-person committee comprised of shareholders and employees volunteering their time and talent to focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion issues.
Meeting weekly, the committee began defining initiatives in support of our firm’s commitment, steering tasks to be performed, and communicating progress to our team members. The committee evolved into the Advocacy + Inclusion Committee with a mission of focusing on three core areas to strengthen Kaiser Consulting’s social responsibility of eradicating racial inequities:
- Service Opportunities
At the Forefront
Our firm's initial focus would be on the structural racism experienced by Black Americans in the United States. In the Fall of 2020, the A+I Committee held three educational sessions for all team members to learn more about the structural racism Black Americans have historically faced and still encounter today.
- During the first session, the A+I Committee shared information committee members had learned on their self-education journey through fact-based presentations, high-quality videos, and interactive polling questions.
- In the second session, Driven to Succeed founder and CEO Kristin Harper and market researcher Kaylie Dugan presented “Business Professionals on Race.” The presentation summarized the results of in-depth research regarding black and white business professionals' different experiences and perspectives regarding race.
- Following the second session, the A+I Committee asked all team members to complete an anonymous company-wide survey to solicit candid feedback on a multitude of diversity, advocacy, and inclusion topics and ideas for areas of improvement. The survey insights served two purposes. First, to establish a baseline measurement of the inclusive culture at Kaiser Consulting, and second, to inform the continuing vision, goals, and action plans for the A+I Committee.
- In the final session, the survey results, including key takeaways from the above presentation, feelings about race in America, and our firm's current state as a diverse and inclusive organization, were shared with our team members. We also discussed our team members’ recommendations to increase racial and ethnic diversity at Kaiser Consulting, identify targeted engagement opportunities with diverse populations, and improve client and supplier diversity.
Change Through Action
While Kaiser Consulting's initial focus is on raising awareness and eliminating racial injustice for Black Americans, we support racial justice for all. As such, our A+I Committee has recently undertaken the following internal and external activities to encourage our team members, as well as community members, to lead lives of reflection, kindness, and enlightened action:
- Sharing “50 Ways to Be a More Inclusive Leader”
- Curating a reading list of 10 critically acclaimed pieces of journalism for those interested in learning more about racial injustice and gaining a better understanding of the lives of Black Americans
- Encouraging the support of Black-owned independent bookstores
- Commemorating Black History Month by recognizing the accomplishments of several Black Americans and encouraging people to learn more about Black History as American History
- Boosting support for women-owned businesses during National Women's Small Business Month
- Partnering with the Kaiser Consulting Book Club members to read Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson, founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative, to raise awareness about systemic racism and social injustice
- Promoting the support of Central Ohio Black-owned businesses with a curated list of local businesses
- Recognizing diversity by celebrating Women's History Month, International Women's Day, International Transgender Day of Visibility, and Diversity Month
At Kaiser Consulting, we are committed to strengthening our culture of diversity, advocacy and inclusion through education, recruiting, and service opportunities. We encourage and value the diversity of thought, courageous communication, and honest dialogue as we move towards achieving a more just future for all.
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