Embrace Different in the Month of Pride

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Do unto Others as You would Have Them Do unto You

When I was a teenager, I took a trip to the United Nations for a week-long course on diplomatic relations. The program made a lasting impression on me because I decided to pursue my undergraduate studies in foreign service. The most salient and lasting memory was turning the corner down a majestic, carpeted hallway to encounter Norman Rockwell’s mural of the Golden Rule. The half-ton mosaic depicts 65 people of different ages and cultural backgrounds standing together with the words “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” inscribed in sparkly lettering.

The Golden Rule by Norman Rockwell

Most religious and cultural traditions have some form of the golden rule. The words may differ, but the sentiment is the same. People deserve respect—it is human nature no matter where you are born and raised—and the world is a better place when we treat one another with dignity. Being of mixed race, I am keenly aware of how perceived differences can create barriers to understanding and acceptance. Sometimes it is clear to me that people are making assumptions based on the way I look. It sometimes catches me by surprise. If it opens a pathway to exchange ideas and learn something, I am delighted. I’m a curious person, so I pursue opportunities to meet people of backgrounds different from mine. I don’t simply tolerate difference—I embrace it.

Happy to be the Global D&I Board Sponsor of the Schneider LGBT+ and Allies

Even before there were mountains of research proving the creative and productivity benefits of diversity and inclusion, I was on board – perhaps because my biological makeup didn’t leave me with much of a choice. For that, I’m grateful. I have benefited from exposure to people who are different from me in my personal and work life. That’s why I am so happy to be a part of Schneider Electric and to serve as the Global D&I Board Sponsor of the Schneider LGBT+ and Allies network. Living up to the diversity and inclusion values of Schneider is essential as the world needs more organizations than the UN to meet the complex challenges before us.

Rockwell conceived of the piece for the United Nations in early 1950s while he said he was, “waiting for the delegates to straighten out the world…” Instead of leaving it all up to the UN, I am filled with conviction that we will accomplish amazing things at Schneider when we each bring our whole selves to work.

Join me in embracing different this month and every month as we celebrate Pride. #EmbraceDifferent #IamMe #IamUnique #IamSchneider

Rebecca Edwards speaking on a globally broadcast panel at BP about bias.


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