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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Kemp

Inclusion is not enough.

Living in a world that discredits, shame, and devalues who you are from birth creates a psychological deficit that impacts how you navigate and exist in the world, as well as how you love yourself. You are constantly working twice as hard to prove your significance. It is difficult to acknowledge how I’ve conformed my identities in order to be seen and included in dominant culture. Many times I’ve rejected my full self to be accepted and make others comfortable. These behaviors included straightening my hair to be viewed as ‘presentable’ instead of  ‘unkempt’, adjusting my tone and choice of words when speaking in white spaces to sound ‘articulate’ and friendly, and investing in ‘elite’ brands to be classified as sophisticated. The list could go on, but this is just a small taste of what it’s like to live as a person of color, specifically as a Black woman, in America—a place that is grounded by structural racism to maintain inequalities.

The ‘Black Experience’ is what inspired me to start MK Consulting Group. We help organizations move away from creating solely inclusive spaces, to creating spaces that authentically accept individuals for who they are and their talents. It’s not about “fitting in,” it’s about being a culture add. Our culture and identities are a part of our superpowers that creates value through diversity of experience and perspective, that will challenge and inspire people and organizations to propel.

MK Consulting Group supports organizations in this  shift by 

  • designing recruit-to-hire strategies that not only identify and evaluate competencies that align with their core values, but also reflect the people they serve for a successful hiring process. This includes establishing accountability partners and protocols to name implicit biases that generalize and distract us from recognizing exceptional talent.

  • building expansive work cultures to retain diverse talent. Through a detailed organizational audit, we propose strategies and performance-based incentives that will engage and motivate employees to not only meet targeted goals, but collectively empower each other.

  • finding brilliant leaders from diverse networks to drive an organization’s movement through a comprehensive interview process (specifically, in the education and non-profit sectors). We aid organizations in meeting their diversity (people) goals that bring value to their stakeholders.

If you acknowledge and embrace discomfort, then there is opportunity for growth that will change people and systems. This is why we are here. #RepresentationMatters.

Also published on LinkedIn.

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