About a month ago, I had the opportunity to interview Gregory Haile, president of Broward College in Florida, in the United States. Greg has an amazing story and is a classic disruptor, and I’ve been excited to bring you this episode to illustrate the power of embracing constraints and doubling down on strengths to help us grow.
However, at the time of our airing this episode, racial tension in the United States is exploding. We didn’t plan it this way, but I’m grateful you will be hearing this episode for the first time right now.
One of the most potent derailers of disruption is entitlement. We must battle our entitlement if we want to grow and disrupt. There are a few different types of entitlement, as I outline in Disrupt Yourself, but they all stem from seeing people as “other.” Making them objects instead of individuals. One of the ways we combat our own entitlement is by learning about and being in proximity to people who don’t look or think as we do. Listening to their stories and experiences, building relationships that will help us see them for who they are.
Being in community and conversation with people who are not like us takes work. Our biases from our own lives jump to the surface. We hear things that surprise us and seem unbelievable, but when we dig deeper, we realize they’re things we just take for granted based on our own experiences – like Greg coming from a family of 130 cousins and being the first one to go to college. Or that in order for a building to be safe, it needed to have metal detectors.
There are advantages that come because of who we are, where we were born, and what we look like, and there are barriers in place that come because of who we are, where we were born, and what we look like. Part of battling our entitlement is to show gratitude for the things we didn’t earn by being in proximity to others who got things they didn’t deserve.
We need to listen to each other’s experiences and stories.
We need to invest in each other’s lives.
I’m thinking deeply about what that looks like for me.
I hope you’ll think about what that looks like for you.
Links Mentioned in this Episode: