Help For Executives Who Don't Get It
Invitation to Participate in -- "THE
MOMENT" -- Dr. Freeman's Latest Book Project
|By LINDA WALLACE
Joel A. Freeman, President of The
Freeman Institute, Severn, MD and former
chaplain of the Washington Wizards basketball team
('79-'98), is a motivational speaker and corporate change
agent. But lately he’s been spending more of his time with
a new gig: cultural coaching.
"I encourage those who are Caucasian to take a few
weekends out of their lives to watch some videos or read
some books and try to understand what life is like for
people from other cultures," said Freeman.
Freeman, who is white, said the diversity
sessions he conducts are
designed to build respect among employees, which, in turn,
facilitates good communication, enhanced creativity and
whole idea is to build mutual respect, and just to begin to
reach out to someone different," he said. "Out of
that respect, comes communication. If there is dialogue
without the foundation of respect, that just serves to drive
a deeper wedge into the relationship."
and simple, diversity is good business," said Freeman.
"Companies who are genuinely serious about diversity
will be far more competitive and cutting edge than those who
maintain the status quo. And this kind of stuff must start
with the organization's leadership. Sometimes I'll ask
leaders to take a snapshot of their board. It is important
for that picture to contain women and minorities. They will
provide an expanded perspective of the marketplace like no
one else on the board can. Why not have qualified
representatives who are entrusted with the same executive
decision-making capability as everyone else?"
Financial-services companies are joining the legions of
firms that are investing in America’s most valued
asset: the workforce. Industry heavy-hitters such as Merrill
Lynch and UBS PaineWebber are meshing diversity together
with executive training, with the hopes of getting higher
profits in return.
In 1997, the UBS PaineWebber Diversity Council was
established to facilitate "cultural change, with
an emphasis on inclusion in recruiting, retention, and
promotion, and to expand the firm's presence among a more
diverse group of clients," the company said in its
diversity mission statement. "At UBS PaineWebber, we
define diversity as everything that makes us unique as
individuals. Managing diversity is diversity is about
creating an environment that leverages employees' unique
characteristics, allowing everyone an equal opportunity to
With corporations trying to hold down spending, mentoring
and other programs provide an alluring economic incentive as
well, said Kevin Carter, director of diversity at Cleveland,
Ohio-based National City Bank. National City has been
reviewing mentoring concepts and initiatives, and is
considering implementation of a mentoring program.
"Mentoring has always been an important tool,"
Carter said. "Because of the tight labor market and the
increasing concern with retaining employees and lowering
turnover, more and more companies are including
professionals in the middle of the executive ranks in these
concept of cultural enrichment is less threatening and more
comfortable for employees than traditional diversity
programs, where an instructor teaches and the employees
learn, said Freeman, who co-authored a book, "Return
To Glory: The Powerful Stirring of the Black Man"
with an African-American colleague, Don Griffin and who also
facilitates the presentations, "A
White Man’s Journey Into Black History"
The Value of Mutual Respect".
"I am passionate about demonstrating the positive
benefits of diversity," Freeman said. "When there
is give and take, I don’t call it questions and answers. I
call it questions and discussions."
As America advances deeper into the knowledge-based economy,
corporate diversity programs have begun broadening their
reach and shifting the mindset to change the culture,
"treat" bias, and share cultural insights into the
organization with multiethnic and female executives.
These trends reflect a recognition that training and
development have risen to the top among the most important
benefits organizations must offer to attract and retain
talented employees, according to the American Society for
Training & Development (ASTD), a professional
association specializing in workplace learning and
"Training and development are not the only options that
keep employees loyal, but they are considered to be an
integral part of why employees go to and stay at
organizations," said Stacey Wagner, director of a
recent study on the issue...
Would you like to see a stunning
"Night At Earth" image?
...Joe DeAngelis, vice president
and practice leader for an executive coaching and training
firm, said the use of executive coaches is gaining in
popularity, as corporations seek to avoid the costly search
process. An executive coach usually can be hired at a rate
that is between 15 percent and 20 percent of an
executive’s base salary, he said.
"Coaches work with people right in their
environment," DeAngelis said. "There is no vanilla
formula. Coaching is culturally specific. You cannot coach
someone in a vacuum. You have to understand the vision, the
value of the culture in which they compete, and then develop
a learning plan based on that environment."
DeAngelis said coaches and mentors enable companies to help
people align their goals and values with those in the
culture, and, thus, become more efficient and more
influential. This is a departure from early strategies where
multiethnic executives were paired with colleagues of the
same race, he said.
"Historically, corporations have brought multiethnic
executives into the business and then they tried to pair
them off with someone of the same race or put them in with
other diverse individuals. That only breeds more of the
same. Instead, you have to help them learn the culture of
the business, and what the values are, and to find the
1. All-Day "Diversity Seminar" Program --
2. "Diversity Day" Presentation or Keynote Address --
3. "Black History Month" Presentation --
4. Dr. Freeman's African American History Collection --
5. Preview Online Diversity Course --
Flash Player needed to Preview Courses -- Download
6. Critical Incident Debriefing --
7. Symbols that Address Cultural Awareness --
8. Employee Assistant Seminars in DC Region --
White Man's Journey Into Black History
Check out this unique video and half-day presentation.
When we deal
specifically with Cultural Awareness,
we address eleven
Symbols that impact every organization.
A success coach is kind of like your
secret business partner who is totally dedicated to your success --
and you get to keep the profits. Click Click
here to read more about Dr. Joel Freeman's approach to executive
want you to know how pleased we were with your
presentation, Diversity: The Value of Mutual
Respect, which was presented at our
Multicultural Training Observance in Dallas, Texas
on May 22, 2002.
who participated in both sessions of your
presentation were nearly unanimous in their
assessment of its relevance and value. Your approach
to viewing diversity as a multi-layer phenomenon was
unique. And your ability to relate to a
multi-racial, multi-cultural and multi-generational
audience, and keep the participants attentive
throughout your presentation was a major contributor
to your success. A major benefit of your
presentation is it offered to those in attendance a
unique framework for assessing their basic beliefs
about living and working in a multicultural society,
and provided us a point of departure for additional
discussions about the benefits of mutual respect in
the workplace and the larger community.
am happy we were able to bring you to Dallas as a
part of our Multicultural Training effort. Your
presentation was the "meat and potatoes"
of what we regarded as a very successful training.
Civil Rights and Equal Opportunity Manager
learn more about seminar -- Diversity: The Value of Mutual
Schedule Dr. Freeman for a Diversity Presentation
To View More References:
George's County Public Schools Equity Assurance Office
Seattle Port Authority
Los Alamos National Laboratory
WFO Eastern North
Dakota Connects to NOAA Diversity Lecture Series
As part of the
Monthly Diversity Lecture Series, a group of WFO Eastern
North Dakota personnel participated in a talk on by Joel
Freeman entitled "Dealing with People Who Drive You
The talk took place live in Washington, D.C., for NOAA
Headquarters personnel and was viewed live over the Internet
via Real Player on the PDW in the Training Room. The voice
quality ranged from good most of the time to a bit
fuzzy at other times.
The talk was quite interesting, as the expert (Dr. Joel
Freeman) spoke about various personality types that must
interact in the work setting. We all realize some of us are
more "doers than thinkers" and vice-versa. The
point is that each of us brings value into the workforce,
although each in a different way and further understanding
of these personality variables will increase each person's
and then the overall offices functioning.
He also spoke about differences relating to gender,
religious and ethnic backgrounds, age and others. Again,
further understanding of these differences in the workplace
will enable all of us to improve our work place
relationships and could all make us "feel better"
about our contributions to the office and agency mission.
SUCCEEDING IN YOUR ORGANIZATION WITH A DISABILITY
Competency Program Specifically designed for Mental Health
2 New Resources!
--The 4-CD Audio Book version of Return
--140-Minute Video: A White Man's Journey Into Black History
Satisfaction Guaranteed. Period.
Streaming Video Clip of Dr. Freeman
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out the Cultural Diversity Links
Native American Indians
Latinos / Chicanos / Hispanics
Asians and Asian Americans African
European Americans Multiracial and
With People Who Drive You Crazy!"®
Box 305, Gambrills, Maryland 21054
TEL 410-729-7800 FAX