A friend of mine on the faculty at the London Business School professes the need for managers and leaders to embrace cultural intelligence to be successful. This approach known at CQ moves beyond a cultural awareness approach to diversity to instead gaining direct knowledge of interpersonal interactions that allow us to better learn and analyze new situations and cultures and to act accordingly. This requires us to enhance our ability to adapt while discovering new ways to relate to others. CQ focuses on thinking, learning, and strategizing and depends on confidence, persistence, value congruence, and interest in new cultures. CQ requires that we all mimic the social behaviors we see in cultures different than our own and that we create a broad repertoire of behaviors to call upon in a variety of cultural situations. I’ve found the cultural intelligence concept very helpful as I think about Extension’s current and future work. For example, since 2000 there has been an 84% increase in Latinos, a 44% increase in African-Americans, and a 50% increase in Asians residing in Iowa. What does this mean for the development of our CQ as we work with these audiences. Clearly, each of needs to continue to engage with people of all backgrounds to enhance our CQ.
Thanks to all of you for embracing diversity as part of our work. In 2010 the ISUE leadership team created and adopted a diversity plan (see: http://www.extension.iastate.edu/NR/rdonlyres/710A5A22-AD2E-4710-A769-9CC1B9332DF5/136278/Diversity_Plan0710.pdf) The plan requires an annual report from each Extension unit. Thanks to those of you who shared shared diversity efforts for the ISE Extension to Families 2010 Diversity Report
We’ve documented a great variety of diversity efforts. Be sure to start documenting your diversity work for 2011. Hats off to you!
If you’re on campus the evening of Thursday, October 21, feel free to join me in Howe Hall at 6:00 pm to hear Dr. Scott Page speak. He will share his thoughts on diversity based on his book, “The Difference: How the Power of Diversity Creates Better Groups, Firms, Schools, and Societies.” He uses mathematical modeling and case studies to show how variety in staffing produces organizational strength. If you’ve been searching for a way to expand your thinking about diversity, this may be an opportunity to do so.
Join experts who work with youth and families for three days of engaging presentations and insightful dialogue on emerging issues and evidence-based strategies in the 1) growing up poor, 2) economic stress for youth and families, and 3) inclusive programming. Research and resources and program registration are on line at http://www.cyfernet.org/vs2010 Participation in this NIFA/4-H National Headquarters/CYFAR sponsored program is free.
The ISU Extension leadership team has developed a diversity plan for the organization. You can find it at: http://www.extension.iastate.edu/NR/rdonlyres/710A5A22-AD2E-4710-A769-9CC1B9332DF5/129527/ISUEDiversityPlan.pdf Please note that we all need to include at least one diversity goal in our annual performance goals. Questions on the diversity plan can be directed to Don Broshar.