William Heard Included In Aspen Institute’s 2021 Predictions For Business & Society

William Heard, together with other thought leaders, shared his thoughts on the trends within business that he foresees as a result of the crises revealed in 2020.

William’s contribution can be found below, and the full article is available here.

Progress on racial justice will be determined by intentional and rigorous assessment

2020 brought a necessary awakening to injustices faced by Black and Brown individuals in civic, personal, and business spheres. Rising expectations among stakeholders, backed by research linking workplace diversity with performance measures, led many organizations to adopt new or more ambitious policies and initiatives. As the commitments of 2020 approach their first anniversaries, how will we know if actions have kept pace with words, and whether policies and initiatives are working as intended?

Accountability is a prerequisite to progress. As an investor, the “say-to-do” ratio is key to our assessment of management teams. Similarly, stakeholders in 2021 will demand organizations transparently report performance against their diversity and inclusion promises of 2020. The best will modify their initiatives based on learnings, evaluations of effectiveness, and evolutions in the landscape. Ultimately, the pace of progress will depend on consumers, the media, and influencer institutions bringing critical analysis to headline announcements and rewarding organizations that are transparent and effective.

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