GUEST POST from Arlen Meyers, M.D.
A competency is the ability to do something successfully. There are many entrepreneurial competencies. One of them is interdisciplinary teamwork and collaboration i.e. the ability of individuals to form partnerships with a team of professionally diverse individuals in a participatory, collaborative, and coordinated approach to share decision making around issues as the means to achieving improved health outcomes .
In the public health world, D & I means dissemination and implementation i.e. how does a intervention come into common use or become the standard of care. Here is what you need to know about it.
In the education and student success world, D, E & I means diversity, equity and inclusion. Here is the case for it.
In the entrepreneurial world, D, E & I is even more expansive and is measured by:
- Your ability to lead high performance teams both face to face and virtually
- How you create psychological safety – Here are four ways to boost psychological safety.
- The composition of your teams
- International representation
- Demographic representation
- Functional representation (marketing, engineering, finance, etc)
- Persona representation: coaches, teachers, cynics, mentors, etc
- Listening to both good rebels and bad rebels
- The people on your leadership team, advisory board and board of directors
- How you incorporate ideas from industries outside of your own. Sickcare cannot be fixed from inside.
- How you avoid bias and noise to influence outcomes and variability in decision making.
- How you avoid colorism in your sales and marketing approach.
- Ownership, not just fairness
- Improving your emotional intelligence along the narcissistic-empathy spectrum
Are you ready to innovate?
I’m a privileged, old white guy who won the ovary lottery. My child of immigrant, first generation to college father got an advanced degrees. Consequently, I was able to grow up in the right ZIP code and take advantage of the opportunities afforded to me by sheer dumb luck. As a result, I wound up being an academic surgeon and worked at the same place for 40 years until I retired as an emeritus professor to pursue my next encore side gig, including working with several non-profits that sit at the intersection of sick care, higher education, biomedical and clinical entrepreneurship and diversity, equity and inclusion.
What are the barriers to leading DEI?
Rather than making leaders solely responsible for their own effectiveness, these researchers allow a balance between managerial competences and the many constraints that limit leaders. With bounded leadership, they look past the leader’s characteristics and consider the many constraints they encounter at the individual, team, organizational and stakeholder levels.
In bounded leadership, there are five distinct abilities leaders require to be effective:
- Anticipation competence: The ability to predict market patterns and conditions, which are essential to the organization, such as future trends or customer needs
- Mobilization competence: The ability to inspire employees to put an extraordinary effort into their work
- Self-reflection competence: The ability to analyze past experiences and draw useful conclusions
- Values-creation competence: The ability to promote a leader’s values in the organization
- Visionary competence: The ability to create an attractive vision of the organization, communicate this vision to followers and empower them to implement it
Each of these competencies presents several hurdles: cultural (difficulties in changing values and norms), emotional (strong negative emotions that prevent rational behavior), entitlement (formalized organizational responsibilities and hierarchy), ethical (leaders’ dilemmas), informational (difficulties in processing or collecting data), motivational (problems with inspiring others) and political (office politics and power plays).
Competencies are measured by entrustable professional activities defined by a performance rubric. Creating diverse, equitable, inclusive teams that deliver expected results is one of them. But, getting from said to done takes more than education, training and policy changes.
Being DEI competent is not about changing your mind. It requires changing your mindset.
Image credit: Pixabay
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