Beware the Echo Chamber

Michael Benning, IpX Executive Director, True North Enterprise Calibration

Creating diverse and equitable communities and workplaces begins with listening to one another. I’m white; I’m male, and I’m old enough to remember the evening news with Walter Cronkite. I’m isolated too – I live in Pleasantville, USA, in a subdivision with a gate. I didn’t set out to avoid people who don’t think like me – it just happened.

I’m in an echo chamber: to Walter’s dismay, I like getting my news from the small number of sources who ‘tell it like it is’ (that’s code for news that reinforces what I already believe). I interact with people every day with similar (or nearly identical) life experiences. Listening to alternate viewpoints doesn’t just happen. I believe social injustice in any form is absolutely wrong and completely unacceptable – but I can’t recall the last time I had a real conversation with someone dealing with it.

Creating diverse and equitable communities and workplaces does indeed begin with listening to one another – we have to be willing to exit our echo chambers.

But in the end, only doing counts. Build a bridge. If you’re ready to build, you might be interested in the following: