It took me 20 years to finally feel this way…

Not many people know because it was a long time ago, but I spent a year teaching English and studying Korean in South Korea when I deferred a year before entering Georgetown University Law Center.

There is one memory I will never forget. I had been there for several months and my friends from UVA who had visited over the summer were long gone, back to school or their first jobs.

I was waiting at a busy bus stop, just watching all the people and it suddenly dawned on me…everybody — here — looks — like me.

I’m the majority!


DIVERSITY DISCOURSE SERIES

Confidence — the surprising relevance of the Six Degrees of Executive Presence to your Diversity program

Image by Please Don’t sell My Artwork AS IS

What it Means

Confidence. In “The Confidence Code,” by Katty Kay & Claire Shipman, confidence is defined as “the purity of action produced by a mind free of doubt.”

It doesn’t mean you are the best or think you are the best. It means you are performing at “your” best because your actions are not compromised by anxiety, doubts, and insecurity.

When an endeavor is daunting, people look to leadership that will bring their best despite the enormity of the task. This inspires their own confidence and the belief that the goal is attainable.

Things to Consider

For DEI programs, it’s not just what you are…


DIVERSITY DISCOURSE SERIES

Engaged — the surprising relevance of the Six Degrees of Executive Presence to your Diversity program

Image by Please Don’t sell My Artwork AS IS

What it Means

Engaged. This is when you are giving attention to something.

You know what is going on and are there to respond as needed.

When the level of difficulty is high, people look to leadersship that cares and knows what is going on. This encourages people to provide input, raise issues, and keep pushing.

Things to Consider

For DEI programs, who and what are you engaging with? For example, if turnout is low to diversity events, ask yourself what might get people more engaged? Or you could ask the opposite question. Why are some people disengaged or even hostile toward your efforts?

When it…


THIS IS HAPPENING

If this post makes you feel something, it is doing its job

I’m just as guilty as the next person who likes to accentuate the uplifting parts of life. If you are always pointing out problems, people tend to not want to be around you much.

There’s a catch, though. If you ignore or don’t point out a problem, it persists. So though it may be a bitter pill to swallow, if there is something you want to change, the very first step is you have to acknowledge what is happening.

So this series of posts will acknowledge things I’d like to change. …


DIVERSITY DISCOURSE SERIES

Stillness — the surprising relevance of the Six Degrees of Executive Presence to your Diversity program

Image by Please Don’t sell My Artwork AS IS

What it Means

Stillness. This is a state of freedom from storm or disturbance.

You only move when it is time to move — no earlier and no later. Your lack of extraneous movement allows you to see things that others miss.

When a lot of activity is going on, seemingly all at once, people look to leadership that will not get lost in thoughtless activity.

Things to Consider

For DEI programs, what time do you spend not doing, but simply reflecting, appreciating, or resting? The enemy of creativity is tension and you can’t relax when you constantly on the go. …


THIS IS HAPPENING

If this post makes you feel something, it is doing its job

I’m just as guilty as the next person who likes to accentuate the uplifting parts of life. If you are always pointing out problems, people tend to not want to be around you much.

There’s a catch, though. If you ignore or don’t point out a problem, it persists. So though it may be a bitter pill to swallow, if there is something you want to change, the very first step is you have to acknowledge what is happening.

So this series of posts will acknowledge things I’d like to change. …


DIVERSITY DISCOURSE SERIES

Equanimity — the surprising relevance of the Six Degrees of Executive Presence to your Diversity program

Image by Please Don’t sell My Artwork AS IS

What it Means

Equanimity. This describes an evenness of mind, especially under stress.

No matter what unexpected thing happens, you will keep your cool.

When all hell breaks loose, people look to leadership that is able to maintain poise while deciding what to do. When you remain calm, you act as a sort of buoy that helps other stay calm.

Things to Consider

For DEI programs, what is your reaction when things don’t go according to plan or a huge, unexpected problem pops up? Do you run around in circles without fixing a thing? …


Really appreciated the personal and detailed perspective. It made me realize that there is so much that so many people cannot know in a personal way because they will never experience it, but when you tell the story it comes close and that is a good thing. What especially resonated with me was the skewed perspectives from people in power as to what is fair and equitable. As long as that continues to be the norm, and I've been asking myself a lot lately how we can impact this, it will be a challenge for anyone who is not considered a part of the dominant class in society. Thanks so much for sharing and good luck to you son! Such a great time in life.


THIS IS HAPPENING

If this post makes you feel something, it is doing its job

I’m just as guilty as the next person who likes to accentuate the uplifting parts of life. If you are always pointing out problems, people tend to not want to be around you much.

There’s a catch, though. If you ignore or don’t point out a problem, it persists. So though it may be a bitter pill to swallow, if there is something you want to change, the very first step is you have to acknowledge what is happening.

So this series of posts will acknowledge things I’d like to change. …


THIS IS HAPPENING

If this post makes you feel something, it is doing its job

I’m just as guilty as the next person who likes to accentuate the uplifting parts of life. If you are always pointing out problems, people tend to not want to be around you much.

There’s a catch, though. If you ignore or don’t point out a problem, it persists. So though it may be a bitter pill to swallow, if there is something you want to change, the very first step is you have to acknowledge what is happening.

So this series of posts will acknowledge things I’d like to change. …

Joe Kwon

Keynote speaker on Leadership and Executive Presence, with a heart for promoting diversity

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