By Michelle Duke, chief diversity officer, NAB, and president, NAB Leadership Foundation

In today’s climate of a pandemic, racial tensions and more, building a diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) strategy for your station can be overwhelming and, at times, intimidating. Team members are working from home, and as leaders, we are continually grappling with growing a business, serving our audiences and our own professional and personal lives.

While you may be taking action within your organization, it’s important to recognize that this DE&I work is not something that will produce results overnight. It is work that needs to be ingrained into your business strategy with the flexibility to evolve, shift and grow continually. Before you jump into the action phase, it’s important to assess where your organization stands in the process. Recently, I moderated two panels that will be available during the NAB’s Sales and Management Television Exchange and the Radio Show, respectively.

Both panels feature brilliant minds that offered wise counsel. They offered insights into  assessing your organization, developing a strategy and taking action on executing a DE&I strategy, but the jewels from both conversations came from the advice on how to begin the journey.

We didn’t get to where we are as a country or an industry in one day, and we won’t get to where we strive to be instantly. Working in the fast-paced broadcast industry might make one impatient for results. As you seek to represent the voices of your local communities better and diversify the broadcasting workforce, it’s important to remember that these things take time. Building a sustainable plan will yield action items that become the critical building blocks of your company culture.

To assist you in this process, the NAB Leadership Foundation recently launched the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Resource Center. This tool provides you and your team with a list of resources, training options and experts to assist you with creating an inclusive and equitable culture. This center is a safe place to gather data as you figure out your starting point.

As NAB’s chief diversity officer and president of the NAB Leadership Foundation, my goal is to ensure that you and your team have the tools, resources and expertise to build a more diverse workforce and represent the varying communities you serve. Whether you are looking to partner with an organization for hiring needs or consult an expert to train your staff to make systemic changes, I am here to help you unlearn, learn, grow and lead your organization to ultimate success.

The NAB Leadership Foundation Diversity Equity and Inclusion Resource Center is an evolving tool. We will continue to add information that will assist you in finding the best approach to take as a team and organization. Just remember, it’s one step at a time, over time.  

If you would like to schedule a time to talk or have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me via email at mduke@nab.org.