Dr. Karen Townsend helps professionals live and lead…confidently! She’s an experienced thought leader and subject matter expert with a demonstrated history of working in the professional training and coaching industry. Clients include Fortune 500 companies, Government Agencies, Educational Institutions and Nonprofit Organizations. Strong business development professional skilled in Leadership Development, Diversity Education, Coaching and Mentoring and Development of Staff at all levels.
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- What are common mistakes interviewers make when interviewing you? “They assume I have ALWAYS been Dr. Townsend and they don’t know my journey. Today, I am a person who many might consider a “success.” I am an award-winning speaker, a best-selling author and my business has been recognized in the category of “Woman-owned Business of the Year” (by the Dayton Business Journal). But what they don’t know is that I started off as a poor black girl, raised by a single parent, in government housing, receiving welfare. Typically, a person with that “resume” is not expected to achieve. But here I am. And that journey frames the way I see the world and is the foundation for the work I do. People/Children with backgrounds similar to my own are often overlooked. Expectations are low. They are labeled as at-risk. They are excluded. In all the work I do, I want leaders to recognize the POTENTIAL of all people.”
- Juneteenth – in 1865 (June 19th) , enslaved African Americans were notified of their freedom by Union troops in Galveston Bay, TX—two years after the Emancipation Proclamation was issued.
- Discrimination in the workplace — Research from Harvard Business School states that companies are more than twice as likely to call minority applicants for interviews if they submit “whitened” resumes than candidates who reveal their race—and this discriminatory practice is just as strong for businesses that claim to value diversity as those that don’t.
- How do we solve this problem?
- President Obama on cancel culture –“One danger I see among young people, particularly on college campuses—and this is accelerated by social media—there is this sense sometimes the way of me making change is to be as judgmental as possible about other people and that’s enough. . . . Like, if I tweet or hashtag about how you didn’t do something right, or use the wrong verb, then I can sit back and feel pretty good about myself. ‘Cuz man, did you see how woke I was? I called you out! This idea of purity, and you’re never compromised, and you’re politically woke, and all that stuff — you should get over that quickly. . . . The world is messy. There are ambiguities. People who do really good stuff have flaws.”
- “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” ― Edmund Burke
- Why should we not begin with training when it comes to diversity and inclusion? “We train dogs, we educate people.” We need to start with education.
- Ask people, “How are you feeling?” Dr. Townsend – “I’m emotionally exhausted and intellectually spent.”
- What can we do? “Seek first to understand before seeking to be understood. Suspend judgement.”
- “If you see something, say something.”
- Read: Can We Talk?
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Be part of “Mindful Monday” — Text LEARNERS to 44222