It’s not about Equality it is about Fair Treatment… An excerpt from my book

The constant flow of news coverage of gender integration issues at work and in politics does not seem to slow down nor go away, and that is a good thing.

Today I want to share my thoughts about one key factor I feel has been overlooked and in my estimation is a fundamental issue to review. The choice we made of using the word equal instead of fair, when seeking gender parity and inclusive environments.

“For both women and minorities, trying to be equal to — in the sense of being the same as — white men has rarely paid off in either career success or personal fulfillment. This approach has also constrained the growth and success of businesses and organizations by eliminating or muting the different attributes and qualities that make women and minorities complementary, strategic partners.

To unlock the potential of both individuals and organizations, I believe we must shift our paradigm from equality and sameness to fairness. A simple definition of fairness is “the ability to make judgment free from discrimination or dishonesty.” Applying that standard, rather than mere appearances of “equality,” demands the development of a work environment that:

  • Supports the exchange of ideas in a context of respect and interest in others
  • Celebrates the value of diverse backgrounds and cultural contexts
  • Encourages individuals to use and develop inherent qualities and abilities rather than trying to assimilate
  • Promotes inclusive thinking and behaviors
  • Focuses on measuring, encouraging and rewarding real talent and performance
  • Eliminates the quota mentality and demoralizing role of women and minorities as token figures”.