Monday, May 13, 2013

Diversity expert speaks at University of Chicago to fight discrimination

Tim Wise, a renowned writer, educator and anti-discrimination advocate, was at the University of Chicago on May 6 to raise students’ awareness about race and gender inequality in the U.S. Wise also told students how they can become part of the solution to end racism and gender discrimination in the country. 

In his talk entitled, “Affirmative Action, a Post-Racial Society, and White Privilege,” Wise pointed out that the ignorance of dominant social groups in our society is a persistent problem, which contributes to educational disparity in the U.S. Being part of a dominant social group means “knowing that what else others of our race do, we will not have to answer for them,” he said.

Wise, who is known for his strong anti-racism stance, also touched on the subject of gender discrimination during his talk. He encouraged his listeners to widen their view and understanding about race, sexuality and gender in order to reduce the problem of discrimination in the country.

Wise also dealt with a recent instance of racial discrimination in the University of Chicago, which involved posting of offensive contents on the Internet.

“If you think it’s OK to post anonymous homophobic, racist, sexist things…. You are not qualified to attend a university in the United States of America, especially this one,” he said in reaction to the incident.

After his talk, students said they gained new understanding of the issue of race and gender.

Wise is just among the many faces that combat discrimination and promote diversity in society and in the workplace. If you’re interested to find out more about this subject, visit diversityworking.com and see how companies and other groups promote diversity

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Phillips 66 reports strong Q1 earnings

Phillips 66 announced this week that the company's earnings for the first fiscal quarter have more than doubled this year amid the persistently low prices of U.S. shale oil and natural gas.

The company's first quarter earnings jumped from $636 million last year to $1.4 billion this year, according to the report. Phillips 66 Chairman and CEO Greg Garland said this strong growth resulted from favorable refining and chemical margins.

"We also are investing in the continued growth of our business. Our plans for a new natural gas liquids fractionator on the Gulf Coast reinforce our commitment to the American energy landscape and highlight our unique opportunities across the downstream value chain," Garland said.

The company has stakes in 15 refineries. It also operates other businesses including Chevron Phillips and DCP Midstream.

Phillips 66 is one of the companies that support and implement workplace diversity initiatives. As a member of DiversityWorking, Phillips 66 ensures that its employees in all its facilities enjoy equal benefits and privileges in the workplace. Find out more about what Phillips 66 is doing to tout workplace diversity and inclusion by clicking through this link.

What diversity really means



The push for workplace diversity and inclusion has been going on for decades, not just in the U.S. but all across the globe. While most people think that the concept of workplace diversity is chiefly about creating an inclusive workplace for people from different cultural backgrounds, the idea is actually bigger than the issue of race and racial discrimination.

Workplace diversity means recognizing and respecting individual differences. These differences include several dimensions such as race, age, gender, sexual preference, ethnicity, religion, social status and even political beliefs.

But diversity goes way beyond these dimensions. It also means being open to people with different experiences, personalities, communication styles, physical appearance and level of comprehension or learning.

Diversity yields significant benefits to people, businesses and communities. Among many others, diversity allows a person to explore new cultures and backgrounds, which can be essential in his or her personal development. This cultural awareness gives people a deeper level of understanding about the world. It also helps people understand themselves and enables them to relate with others more effectively.
Several factors are important in achieving diversity, not just in the workplace but even in businesses, schools and communities.

The first step to achieving diversity is knowing a person’s traits, both the visible and the invisible. We must be very careful not to pass judgment on a person based on superficial traits such as a person’s clothing or even a person’s hairstyle. Judging others based on their outward traits creates a gap that could prevent people from creating bonds, business relationships or friendships. Thus, it is important that we get to know the person deeper before passing judgment.

After knowing the person, the next step is to welcome him or her into the community. Once we get past the person’s traits, we can freely interact with that person regardless of his or her cultural background, sexual orientation or appearance.

All in all, respect and acceptance are the foundations of diversity. To know more about this topic, visit diversityworking.com and see how U.S. companies and the government work hand in hand in promoting workplace diversity across the country.