In recent months societies magnifying glass has been held over the existence of systemic racial inequality. It shouldn’t be surprising then, that that conversation can easily be carried on into the agriculture industry. Bryana Clover advocates for racial equality in the workplace as a consultant to companies. Bryana is biracial and through her experiences in agribusiness has found an “intense passion for creating brave spaces to have tough conversations around race in the workplace.”
“I truly believe that our future depends on us bringing that lens into our diversity inclusion initiatives and really better understanding what we can do as organizations to create inclusive environments for black people and people of color.” - Bryana Clover
Bryana helps identify what systemic racism may look like in both agribusiness and agriculture production. She highlights the lack of diversity at the CEO level in the vast majority of companies. She offers these tips towards addressing what an individual can do to combat racism and microaggressions in their workplace:
Education involves understanding and identifying the dynamics of racial inequality in current events. “There is a structural dynamic that’s going on that impacts every aspect of our life. And I think that understanding that is the first step.”
Reflecting on “racial identity and how that impacts you personally and then how that impacts the spaces that you're in” allows you to identify how you fit in the corporate culture and how that environment may be contributing to a lack of equality.
Call attention to your discoveries and observations. Be an advocate for someone who might be disenfranchised. Training at a corporate level can “facilitate conversations around this.” Bryana also suggests contributing to organizations that are supporting and promoting racial equality.
On a more corporate level, Bryana calls companies to put real effort and work behind the many statements that have been issued supporting racial equality. Financially supporting organizations that have the expertise and focus in creating racial equality is a great first step. Committing time and money to making sure the workplace is a safe and supported environment for all employees is needed. “This is a journey, not a destination.” Bryana has created six modules for executives and a tool kit for employees for more internal change within a business culture. Bryana’s consultancy provides assessments, plans, tools and follow up to allow companies to follow through with their commitments and initiatives.
“We cannot afford as individuals or as a society to do nothing anymore.…..Activism looks different for all of us. Just do the next right thing.” - Bryana Clover
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