Things have been getting spicy on several ERE Groups. For instance, there?s been a wonderfully intelligent discussion in Carl Braun?s Diversity Recruiting group ? one of my favorites as a lurker – where one can read (followed by my thoughts):
I don?t know of any recruiter who seeks to discriminate; perhaps but I don?t know many recruiters who?ll volunteer to their customer that their requirements are discriminatory and/or downright stupid.
Bottom line?diversity will work itself out naturally for most companies.; hmmm, imagine how long the Civil Rights movement would have taken if progress were left to natural selection?
Without a concentrated diversity recruiting effort the market effectively ?conspired? against them through sheer numbers. I suppose a market forces model can be used to describe discrimination but it misses the sociological element.
I doubt a white woman would discriminate against you because you were white. No, but it might occur because many men are jerks and believe that women have no business in the Board room and have no compunction against saying this aloud.
Just because an institution is headed up by people of color, don’t ever assume they have folks of there own color best interests in mind. Same color does not always equate to same mentality. Some, certainly not all have reached an acme of socio-economic status and may not wish to rock the boat, because the man may be watching. Some of my best friends are Black, but not all of them are…sometimes I have to watch my BLACK… Wow, did this ever take my breath away!
Solving discrimination will never be done at the corporate level or within the workplace for that matter. It is a socio-economic and education issue that needs to be dealt with in elementary and high school, and in the community, and in the home. It is a parental issue. As with any problem, I think the focus should be on fixing the problem at the root, rather than the symptom. Workplace discrimination is the by product, if you want corporate America to make an impact on discrimination, ask them to donate money or support community initiatives that promote multiculturalism. Eureka! But we can still examine where barriers have been created within organizations because no diversity effort will be successful if barriers to personal and professional growth exist. No barrier is a good barrier.
Bravo to Carl and the group ? this is great stuff that for many isn?t easy to discuss privately let alone in a public forum. This is just one of the strategic issues that is necessary to continue to mold recruiting and it?s especially challenging when so many others are concerned with the more tactical elements of our craft.
Which brings me to my point. I truly enjoyed reading Jeremy Eskenazi?s article on the marriage of HR and recruiting. In it he offered So that’s why I can’t decide if the relationship between recruiter and HR generalist is like husband and wife or brother and sister. Either way, it’s all in the same family, and as we know from Darwin and Tony Soprano, it’s all about “the survival of the family. I couldn?t help thinking the adage that incest is only relative ? you know what this can bring. As far as the Mafia connection, I can?t help but think of bloody horses heads. I certainly don?t want to be a part of this! Personally, I believe we?re a different family.
Whereas HR is like a trip to the zoo ? a place for everything, everything in its place – no entropy allowed, recruiting is more like a Galapagos expedition in search of Organizational Darwinism where recruiters are Organizational Anthropologists and Geneticists (I suppose this makes HR folks zookeepers). We go by the names Watson and Crick (perhaps Adler, Crispin, Sullivan, and Wheeler can fight over who plays Linus Pauling and Louis Leakey) and our plans, techniques, and tools are accountable for uncovering the triggering mechanisms that enable the organizational entropy that is required for ongoing growth and productivity. The HR programs are great but it is talent that drives everything. We need to intimately understand what the organization?s current DNA looks like in order to effectively search for new material that is to be combined into the new double helix.
Realistically, it isn?t easy being HR especially when they are rightly concerned about escalating benefit costs, SOX 404, violence in the workplace, executive compensation, and ongoing government intervention in ? well, heck, everything. But with so many heads of HR still believing that cost-per-hire is the ultimate recruiting metric, it has become apparent that recruiters need to separate themselves from the family they were once comfortably part of and take a different approach.
I know HR wants to be a strategic business partner in business (every Conference Board survey for the past umpteen years says this); it?s time that recruiters show that they already are strategic business partners. Are you?