MEN AT THE FOREFRONT OF CHANGE

02/08-2012

Blogpost introducing video interview with Michael Welp and Jo Ann Morris, co-founders of White Men as Full Diversity Partners

One of the men of the Sandpoint Men’s Group 2.0 is the co-founder of White Men as Full Diversity Partners, and he is aware of the two different kinds of contexts in which to work on oneself as a man.

Men’s groups are about working with oneself; realize things that might have been hidden, challenge beliefs around oneself and others, focus on feelings, treating oneself and others fair and equal.

Diversity labs coach employees to engage in group-based dialog and get a better understanding of current diversity dynamics that will ultimately lead to improved equality on the workplace.

In the men’s group, each man is working on completely personal issues, ideas and beliefs, and in a company everybody is learning to confront behaviors that are limiting for one’s coworkers and oneself. Are those two contexts really that different from each other? In the men’s group there is really no distinction between personal life issues and carrier issues -in both contexts the men learn to respond to their inner feelings and realize how those are a result of one’s relationships.

As the interview will address, maybe it is not that easy to distinguish between the impact of a men’s group and the impact of corporation’s diversity work -they share the same goal -but a difference is that a men’s group depends on voluntary membership whereas the employees are part of it because of an obligatory protocol.

Through Michael’s work he balances it out -at work, summits and conferences the diversity discussion leads, and in the men’s group the personal feeling leads. The result is improving the culture you are a part of and making sure that it is inclusive.

As this interview touches upon, it is relevant to discuss men’s groups’ diversity characteristics and whether the men’s group’s closed doors make the group all-inclusive. Unfortunately that is a discussion for further research and is not part of this specific documentary film.

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