Where Are They?


I work in government. I wrote script for a public-facing video. Another team was supposed to create the video. They did not have people of color (black, brown, dark white, nothing) in the video.

I was nervous about bringing it up because when I'd done so in the past, it seemed like I was just complaining.

This time... I roleplayed the conversation even though I was hesitant and said something.

The director of the video producer rolled her eyes.

How do I bring this up to my upline who is her peer and seemingly friend?


Thank you for this question because more folx are finding themselves in situations where lack of inclusion is a glaring problem but aren’t sure how to address their concerns. As more business stakeholders shift towards “inclusion” as foundational to business success, an essential component towards profitability, homogeneity is no longer seen as the safest or wisest path forward.

In fact, the “status quo of assimilation” is increasingly becoming a direct threat to organizational leaders’ ability to innovate, differentiate, and grab the attention of the 21st-century consumer and workforce who expect to see their lived experiences reflected in their work or the products and services they buy. And if they don’t see it, they expect it won’t be ignored/erased. The problem is that very few folx have the experience to manage such expectations in ways that don’t counter their goal(s).

Much of business still operates in very segmented, isolated, and non-collaborative ways, and government is no different. One team works on one part of the project while other teams work on other parts. When project goals are agreed upon without execution, this leads teams to develop their benchmark for success. As a result, folx spend time, at the end, working to make a complete picture out of “somewhat” connected pieces.

This not only wastes time but is also not an effective and efficient use of other organizational resources. Far too often, folx get to the end of such a project having had a less than ideal experience due to lack of inter-team communication and collaboration, which causes tension that’s then rarely addressed.

As I see it, at a very high level, you have a few issues happening here that need to be addressed: