Let’s get a bit real. Chances are, if you are white in the workplace, you think you are an ally. For example, approximately 75 percent of white employees believe that they are allies to women of colour. However, when do you recall DOING something in support of someone with a marginalized identity?
Allies take action, and this was a key point in this interview with Emily Williams of Forward Ever Global. Emily is a diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) expert and coach to women of colour. She helps women of colour prepare themselves to address microaggressions and other common workplace challenges.
Acts of allyship may make you uncomfortable like when you call out bias, or perhaps, you name a microaggression in a high-stake setting. Maybe you reduce your own opportunity in favour of someone who is overlooked because of their identity. These are the actions, however, of a true ally.
There is so much overlooked talent because someone doesn’t come in the desired package. True allies are going to help by giving that talent a chance to be seen for their strength and perform. It’s also the right thing to do and HR can play a role through individual action and DEI programs.