The Chicago Tribune has a nice interview this morning with Mary Beth West, Kraft Foods’ chief marketing officer, who describes herself as “three-quarters black and one-quarter Polish, light-skinned, with white brothers and white sisters,” and who says that this makeup “makes me sensitive to people who look and act different. It gives me a perspective on diversity and the power diversity can bring to the workplace, to innovation and, ultimately, to grow businesses. The more different perspectives in the room, the better endpoint you'll get to -- richer, deeper, more compelling."
- KC's View:
- This ability to look beyond one’s own prejudices and perspectives is incredibly important and is, I think, and enormous asset for West and Kraft.
We’ve long said around here that liberals should spend at least a few minutes each day listening to Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity, and that conservatives should try to watch a little bit of Keith Olbermann or Rachel Maddow. Either may make you want to drive your car into a bridge abutment, but it is worth doing…if only because it gives you exposure to the other side.
That’s also why business needs to listen more to the younger generation of workers, because they will reflect more accurately the attitudes of the younger generation of shoppers, who may have priorities that only slightly resemble those of their elders.