Finalizing Your Blueprint

This is a critical step in the inclusiveness initiative. Once you assemble all of the components of the inclusiveness blueprint in one place, an individual or a group of individuals who oversees or manages most or all of an organization's work (such as senior management, the CEO/executive director, and/or the chair of your board of directors) should review the whole inclusiveness blueprint. At this stage, the blueprint should be assessed for:

Overall Feasibility:  A critical step in the review process is assessing whether the organization has collectively taken on an appropriate amount of work to become more inclusive. It is easy to get too ambitious in this process and to take on more than your organization can accomplish in a finite period of time. Whoever is responsible for reviewing the final inclusiveness blueprint should give serious consideration to whether your organization's systems and people can absorb the amount of change suggested in the combined action plans.

Detail Feasibility: As in any good planning process, it is important to challenge yourselves to make a substantial impact with the inclusiveness initiative, yet you don't want to set goals that are unrealistic and end up discouraging people because they aren't able to meet expectations.

 

For example, it may not be realistic to include a fundraising goal to increase contributions from people of color by $100,000/year in the next two years when contributions by people of color haven't ever surpassed the $10,000 level.

Potential Overlap of Activities: Since you don't want to duplicate efforts, make sure that people are clear about their responsibilities and that responsibilities do not overlap unnecessarily.

Continuity and Consistency: If different people write different sections of the blueprint, there likely will be inconsistencies in writing, presentation, and style. Look for inconsistencies in terms of goals/values, the level of detail provided, the amount of time that people anticipate certain tasks taking, and in language and tone.

Gaps: Even though you've been through this relatively comprehensive planning process, it is possible that you will find things that should be done but that have not been included in the blueprint. This is the time to identify those gaps and develop additional strategies, if necessary.

The entire Inclusiveness Committee should also review the inclusiveness blueprint to ensure that they understand the content and that it accurately summarizes the work that has been done. At this stage, senior management should take the ultimate responsibility for ensuring that the final product is consistent with the organization's overall strategic goals.

 

Can you imagine if this country were not so afflicted with racism? Can you imagine what it would be like if the vitality, humor and resilience of the black American were infused throughout this country?     
     Maya Angelou

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