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October 2, 2023

What Percentage of Straight White Businessmen Don’t Give a Crap About Diversity and Inclusion?

In the year of our COVID Lord 2020, it’s a shame that nearly six in 10 straight white dudes who are college-educated professionals still don’t really give a damn about their employer’s diversity and inclusion efforts.

From a survey recently conducted by the Center for Talent Innovation:

Majority men are defined as white straight cis-gender (cis) men (95% of the group) and nonwhite straight cis men (5% of the group) who are in the majority race/ethnicity of most people around them at work. Based on respondents’ answers to the question “How important is D&I to you at work?,” majority men were categorized into three archetypes: Detractors, Persuadables, and True Believers. Detractors (10% of the sample), were those who said D&I was not at all important. Persuadables (48% of the sample) said D&I is “not very” or “somewhat” important. True Believers (42% of the sample) said D&I is very or extremely important—and were the most likely of the three groups to report being involved in D&I efforts.

Now, the Center for Talent Innovation, which used results from the survey (EY was one of the research sponsors) for its report, “What Majority Men Really Think About Diversity and Inclusion (And How to Engage Them in It),” want you to believe that nine in 10 (90%) straight white businessmen place at least a little value in D&I efforts by including the 48% of “persuadables” with the 42% of “true believers.”

But maybe Adrienne’s cynicism has started to rub off on me these past two years because I would put that 48% who CTI believes could be persuaded with the 10% of “detractors.” To me, saying “not very” or “somewhat” has more of a negative connotation than a positive one. If you ask someone, “How much do you like McDonald’s?” and he or she answers, “Meh, not very much” or “I guess somewhat,” you’re going to another fast-food joint to eat.

Our hope is that accounting professionals nowadays are among the 42%, not the 58%.

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