Want to attract top talent to your rural community? Be inclusive!

One of the big impacts of the Great Recession – as with many disruptive economic events – was the relocation of many young people away from rural communities and small towns to large cities. After all, this is where businesses are. The result is that businesses located in smaller cities and towns and rural areas are finding themselves faced with an aging workforce and fewer and fewer workers in their prime or formative years. As David Harrison and Shayndi Raice write for the Wall Street Journal, this dilemma has led to many less-populated areas offering interesting perks to younger potential residents. “Relocate to Hamilton [Ohio] and the city promises $5,000 to help pay student loans,” they

Taking ACT!ON to Stem Unconscious Bias in the Workplace

Unconscious bias is increasingly in the news lately. Whether it’s the arrest of two innocent young black men for “trespassing” at a Philadelphia Starbucks or police being called on a black Yale graduate student seen napping in a common room, the nation’s attention has recently and frequently been turned toward the ways we often judge each other based simply on appearance, whether we realize it or not. The “whether we realize it or not” part is precisely why unconscious bias is so difficult to tackle. Most of us aren’t blatantly and consciously bigoted. We’d recoil at the very notion. But at some level, beneath our own awareness, we all have some biases. And if we can’t identify them, how can

Amazon's Board Hiring Policy: Appropriate or Short-Sighted?

In an article for Harvard Business Review, Stefanie K. Johnson discusses a recent decision by Amazon to not update its board hiring processes for board of director positions to formally require the consideration of women and minority candidates. What would prompt such a move? Johnson makes two interesting points, backed up by research from herself and colleagues on diversity hiring. One Is Not Enough Johnson compares the rejected shareholder proposal to the so-called “Rooney Rule” in the NFL, a policy implemented in 2003 that required every team to interview at least one minority for open head coach or general manager positions. Johnson points to data showing that while the Rooney Rule had s

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