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Inclusion on Purpose summary

Ruchika Tulshyan

An Intersectional Approach to Creating a Culture of Belonging at Work

4.1 (33 ratings)
17 mins

Brief summary

Inclusion on Purpose by Ruchika Tulshyan is a practical guide for companies to implement diversity and inclusion strategies. It provides actionable steps for companies to improve their culture and create inclusive environments for all employees.

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    Inclusion on Purpose
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    Start building an inclusive company culture.

    One day, not long after starting a new role at a fast-growing startup, Jodi-Ann Burey received an unexpected call. It was her manager.

    Could she please attend a meeting in one hour? Oh, and could she present something to the company’s management team on her work? Jodi-Ann immediately realized her inclusion in the meeting was an afterthought. But she knew she had to jump at the chance to impress the higher-ups. Fortunately, she had a presentation all ready to go.

    So up she got, in front of the company’s most senior team, to explain what she was doing.

    The CEO, though, began to look increasingly concerned. After a while, she angrily commented that Jodi-Ann’s work wasn’t relevant – and spent a full half-hour asking her combative, uncomfortable questions.

    The CEO was clearly out of line – but not a single other person in the room spoke up for Jodi-Ann. You’ve probably guessed that she was the only woman of color in the room. But have you also guessed what her job was?

    She was the lead on diversity, equity, and inclusion.

    As if the CEO’s behavior wasn’t racist enough on its own, that was the work she was claiming was irrelevant to the company. She was wrong. For any company to thrive, this work should be at the heart of what it does.

    Over the next few sections, we’ll explore a few of the steps that companies can take to help foster a purposefully inclusive culture. But before we do that, here are a few extra pointers that’ll help you, as an individual, become part of the solution, not the problem.

    The first is to think about inclusion issues intersectionally. This simply means understanding that there are multiple factors that condition someone’s level of privilege – white women, for example, tend to have very different workplace experiences than Black women. Women from Asian backgrounds, like the author Ruchika Tulshyan, face a different range of issues again.

    The second is to recognize that whatever privileges you have yourself, it’s worth remembering that the very idea that you can go through life “not seeing color,” like so many claim, is a surefire sign of privilege. People of color have no choice but to see color because their own color affects their whole experience of the world.

    And the third is to use your own privilege, however it manifests, for good. Don’t be like those silent onlookers in the meeting with Jodi-Ann and the CEO – speak out. If you’re white, say, you’ll likely face fewer negative consequences if you stick your neck out compared to a person of color. So be an ally and get involved.

    The final point for now? Understand that not being racist isn’t enough. You have to go beyond that – you have to be antiracist. That means you don’t just treat people of color fairly yourself but you also understand how racism benefits you personally, speak out when you encounter racism from other people, educate the people around you, and even get out of the way, when you can, to let people of color take the lead.

    Because inclusion on its own isn’t enough. You have to be inclusive on purpose. And so does your company – which is what we’ll look at next.

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    What is Inclusion on Purpose about?

    Inclusion on Purpose (2022) shows leaders how to foster a culture of inclusion, diversity, and equity in the workplace. Putting the experiences of women of color front and center, it provides impactful inclusion strategies which don’t only benefit the marginalized but every employee in the organization.

    Inclusion on Purpose Review

    Inclusion on Purpose (2021) is a thought-provoking book that explores the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace, offering valuable insights and strategies. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • It provides a practical framework for creating an inclusive culture, offering actionable steps that businesses can take to foster diversity and promote belonging.
    • Through compelling case studies and real-life examples, the book highlights the benefits of inclusion, showing how diversity leads to increased innovation and productivity.
    • With its engaging storytelling and relatable anecdotes, the book keeps readers captivated, ensuring that the topic of inclusion remains intriguing and relevant throughout.

    Who should read Inclusion on Purpose?

    • Those wanting to use their privilege for good
    • Leaders of team and organizations
    • HR professionals

    About the Author

    Ruchika Tulshyan is a best-selling author and journalist whose work focuses on diversity, inclusion, and leadership. Her writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine, and Forbes. Inclusion on Purpose is her second book after The Diversity Advantage.

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    Inclusion on Purpose FAQs 

    What is the main message of Inclusion on Purpose?

    Inclusion on Purpose encourages organizations to embrace diversity and create inclusive cultures.

    How long does it take to read Inclusion on Purpose?

    The reading time for Inclusion on Purpose varies depending on the reader's speed. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Inclusion on Purpose a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Inclusion on Purpose is worth reading for its insights on fostering inclusivity and fostering belonging in the workplace.

    Who is the author of Inclusion on Purpose?

    Ruchika Tulshyan is the author of Inclusion on Purpose.

    What to read after Inclusion on Purpose?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Inclusion on Purpose, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • The Greater Freedom by Alya Mooro
    • Tribal Leadership by Dave Logan
    • Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari
    • How to Talk to Anyone by Leil Lowndes
    • Reset by Ellen Pao
    • Building an Inclusive Organization by Stephen Frost and Raafi-Karim Alidina
    • Finding Clarity by Marc Lesser
    • Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell
    • The Person You Mean to Be by Dolly Chugh
    • The Creative Act by Rick Rubin